If you bought your first home this past summer and it has rain gutters installed along the roofline, then it's very important you understand their function and know how to properly care for them. 

The Purpose of Your Home's Rain Gutter System

While it may be obvious that your home's rain gutters serve the purpose of directing the water away from your roof to areas where it can safely drain away, it may be less-obvious that they actually serve many other purposes as well, including: 

  • keeping water away from the foundation
  • keeping water away from exterior siding
  • preventing soil erosion
  • preventing water intrusion in the basement
  • protecting landscaping

In addition, homeowners sometimes use their rain gutter system's downspouts to collect stormwater for storage or gardening.

The Importance of Regular Rain Gutter Cleaning

Since your new home's rain gutters serve so many different purposes, they need to be kept clean and in good repair. If the gutter system becomes clogged with leaves or malfunctions due to damage, then you will have problems such as:

  • excessive weight pulling on the edge of the roof
  • water wicking under roofing shingles
  • water pouring over the edge of the rain gutters
  • mud splashing on landscaping and siding
  • ice dam formation during winter

In addition, where the gutters are not working correctly, you will also have issues with puddles forming on the ground.

To prevent these issues, you need to clean the gutters at least twice each year. Clean once in the late spring and then again just before winter after all of the leaves have fallen from the trees. 

If you do not feel comfortable cleaning the gutters yourself, then you can always have them cleaned by a professional gutter service. Additionally, you can also have leaf guards installed over the gutters and this will eliminate the need for regular cleanings. 

The Importance of Regular Inspections and Maintenance

Rain gutters don't just need to be cleaned each fall, but they also need to be regularly inspected and maintained.

To inspect the gutter system on your new home, walk the perimeter of your house and look at each area where the gutters are attached and where individual sections are joined together. Since the rain gutters can carry a heavy load when they are full of water, snow, or fallen leaves, they periodically need to be re-secured to your home or have sections pushed back together that have shaken loose. Contact a service, like Hogan  Roofing, for more help.

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