When you discover that your gutters are leaking, this home improvement project might be at the bottom of your priority list. While leaky gutters might not seem like an urgent project to tackle, the truth is that leaky gutters can cause a lot of trouble for homeowners.

However, gutter problems aren’t one to ignore. They can result in very costly foundational damage to your Orange County home. The good news is that a little bit of time and attention can save you a lot of money and headaches in the long run. This summer guide to gutter maintenance in Orange County will show you how to tend to your gutters this season.

But first, let’s talk about why gutter maintenance is so important. Below, we’ll discuss some of the most common problems that are caused by old and neglected gutters.

Damage to Your Roof and Fascia

The condition of your gutters can play a large role in the state of your roof and fascia. In the case of leaky gutters, you’re looking at water damage at the very least. This can cause poor-quality siding to stain or even lose its vibrancy. You may also discover water damage if your gutters continue to leak for an extended period.

When it comes to your roof, leaky gutters can become so damaged that they begin to pull away from your roof. If the gutter hangers break away, this can cause the gutter to pull some of the shingles right off of your roof.

Pooling Water in the Gutter System

If your gutters aren’t draining properly due to clogs and leaks, you might notice water backing up and even overflowing. The excessive amount of weight places stress on the gutter system and circles back to the gutters detaching it from your home.

Standing Water Around Your Foundation

Speaking of pooling water, you might also find even more pooling water around your foundation. This pooling can spell big trouble for your home, resulting in issues such as erosion, cracks in the foundational walls, and even flooded basements (for those who have one!)

Damaged Landscaping

You work hard to keep your home maintained and looking as beautiful as possible. If you’ve spent a lot of time tending to your landscaping, leaky gutters can wash your prized plants and flowers right down the drain.

This is yet another result of standing water around your foundation. If the water makes its way to the nearest flowerbed, it can easily flood the area and kill off your plants.

Now that you know the common problems that clogged gutters cause, here is how you can maintain your gutters to prevent future headaches.

Spend Time Cleaning Debris

Unfortunately, the only way to de-clog your gutters from summertime debris is to clean it out by hand. Put on some thick gloves and scoop out all the debris and sticks. Any small leftover debris can be flushed out with a hose. Keep in mind that you’ll need a ladder, so be sure to use basic ladder safety rules before getting to work.

You can clean your gutter system with the following advice:

  • Use a stable ladder to climb up to the gutter system. If you feel unsafe, have a friend hold the ladder stable for you.
  • Wear protective eyewear and gloves. Gutters are full of debris that can easily poke, scratch, and cause minor (if not serious) injuries.
  • If your gutters are very clogged, you may need to begin removing the debris by hand.
  • Small debris can be flushed out of the gutter system by using a hose.

You’ll want to clean out your gutter system each season. You’ll be surprised at how fast the gutter system fills up with debris and starts causing problems!

Get Nests out of The Gutters

During the summer, birds like to get into your gutters and build nests. Even though baby birds are cute, these aren’t critters that you want living in your gutter system. As you clean your gutters from their debris, be sure to keep an eye out for nests.

Don’t forget to keep an eye out for bee and wasp nests. If you find nests that are occupied, get in touch with a pest control company for removal.

Look out for Leaks

With the occasional downpours and summer storms, leaks in your gutter system can spell bad news. If water makes its way out of the system, it can lead to pooling water which can ultimately damage your foundation. Pooling water can also lead to basement flooding, which is another costly issue that no homeowner wants to deal with.

How to Test Gutters for Leaks

Testing your gutters for leaks is a little time-consuming, but it’s time worth spending to detect potential (and sometimes serious) injuries. Here are the top tips on putting leaky gutters to the test:

Step 1: Find a safe and stable ladder. You’ll need to climb up to your gutter system so you can get access to the top of your gutters. Don’t try to use an unstable ladder, and keep one hand and both feet on the ladder at both times.

Step 2: Clean your gutters from debris. If your gutters don’t have gutter guards installed, you’ll need to pull out leaves, twigs, and other debris remnants that remain in the system. This is an important step since clogged gutters will prevent water from flowing.

Step 3: Once your gutters are cleaned out, grab your garden hose. Your hose is key to running water through the gutter system. Place your hose inside of the gutter so the water flows through. You can either put your hose in a position where it won’t move, or you can find a volunteer to hold the hose steady.

Step 4: Take a walk around the perimeter of your home. This is perhaps the most time-consuming part of checking for leaky gutters. The idea is to detect water drainage in areas where water should not be draining. You’ll need to move the hose into different positions around your home so you can check the entire gutter system.

Step 5: Take a mental note of problem areas. If you find that your gutters are leaking in specific areas, you’ll need to repair or potentially replace to keep the system healthy.

Add Gutter Guards

If you are having a lot of issues with debris clogging your gutters, consider upgrading with gutter guards. The capped systems will only allow water and very small particles of debris to make their way through. You’ll never need to worry about sticks or leaves getting in the way of water flow.

Taking care of your gutter system can save you a lot of hassle and headaches. If you allow your gutters to keep clogging through summer and fall, clogs will ultimately cause costly damage well into the future.

What are the Signs that You Need New Gutters?

If you take the time to maintain your gutters, it might not be enough to ensure that the gutters are performing properly. There are several signs that you need new gutter replacement in Orange County, including:

Mosquito Infestation

As one of the most annoying pests, a mosquito infestation can signal issues with your home. If you discover an unusual influx of mosquitoes near your home, the issue may relate to your gutters. This is because old gutters can cause pooling water. The standing water serves as a breeding ground for mosquitoes—one of the last problems that any Orange County homeowner needs!

Cracks and Rust

Take a step back and consider the condition of your gutters. Are they rusted? Are they missing screws or are they sagging?

This indicates that your gutters have reached the end of their lifespan. Failing gutters will ultimately form holes, begin leaking water, and start leading to an array of problems for your home and pocketbook.

Clogged Gutters

This is a telltale sign that it’s time for new gutter installation or gutter protection. Going without gutter guards exposes your gutters to all the debris from trees and the atmosphere. Even small and seemingly innocent pine needles can ultimately lead to clogged gutters.

Once you discover an issue with clogged gutters, it’s time to take a closer look at their quality and construction.

Get a Free Quote for Gutters in Orange County

Peak Builders & Roofers is the leading source of quality gutters in Orange County. We have decades of experience installing gutter systems throughout Orange County and surrounding communities. Our products are designed to protect your home from damage caused by a storm’s water runoff. We also ensure that you get a product that meets local building codes.

Peak Builders can help you get new gutters installed today. We’ll also provide free estimates and experienced installers so you can get your job done right. Let us help keep your home safe and beautiful! Contact us now for a free estimate.

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