clogged eavestrough resulting in home problems

Clogged Gutters: A Homeowner’s Guide to Preventing Major Damage (2024 Update)

Posted: 03/15/17 - Category: Eavestroughs & Gutters

Clogged gutters can be more than just a nuisance, they can be a costly homeowner’s nightmare.

From water damage and erosion to foundation settling and mold growth, neglecting the maintenance of your gutter and eavestrough can lead to a variety of expensive headaches. The problem can quickly become a slippery slope that unravels into a mess of costly problems for homeowners and property managers.

In this article, we will delve into the causes of cogs in your gutter and eavestrough, the consequences of neglecting this important aspect of home maintenance, and steps you can take to prevent and maintain this expensive problem.

At NICK’S, we have over 10 years in the business cleaning eavestroughs and gutters and thousands of happy customers across the Greater Toronto Area, we are here to lay out all the information you need to understand exactly why you should take care of this critical aspect of your property.

We’re going to cover:

  1. What Causes Gutters to Clog?
  2. Why Maintaining Clean Gutters is So Important
  3. How to Maintain Your Gutters
  4. Why Hiring a Professional is Worth the Investment

Let’s get started.

Clogged gutter filled with leaves and debris, a common cause of gutter blockages

After the leaves come down is the perfect time to address the problem!

1. What Causes Gutters to Clog?

The main causes of clogged gutters are leaves and debris, ice and snow, and pests and nesting materials. Leaves, twigs, and other accumulated debris can easily accumulate in your gutters, leading to blockages that prevent water from flowing freely.

During the winter months, ice and snow can also cause blockages, leading to standing water in your gutters and potential ice dams. Finally, pests such as carpenter ants and birds can also cause blockages in your gutters, nesting and building materials in the gutters and downspouts.

house extensively damaged with low curb appeal

Moral of the story: when it comes to clogged gutters, don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today!

2. Why Maintaining Clean Gutters is So Important

Keeping your gutters clean is crucial for protecting your property from costly repairs and damage. Let’s take a closer look at the specific problems that clogged gutters can cause and how maintaining clean gutters can prevent them.

Damaged roof as a result of blocked gutters, a common consequence of neglected gutter maintenance

Damaged roof as a result of blocked gutters, a common consequence of neglected gutter maintenance

Avoid Roof Damage

Your roof is the first line of defense against the elements, but debris can undermine the effectiveness of your roof. When gutters can’t properly drain water, it can spill over and seep into the roof, causing leaks and structural damage. Regular cleaning with a pressure washer or a simple flush with a garden hose can prevent this.

A house foundation damaged water damage due to properly maintained gutters

A house foundation damaged water damage due to properly maintained gutters

Keep Your Foundation Safe

The foundation of your house is what keeps it standing strong, but clogged gutters can put that stability at risk. Water that overflows from clogs can accumulate around the foundation, leading to cracks and other damage. Maintaining clean gutters ensures that water drains properly and away from your foundation.

A basement wall showing mold and damage due to neglected gutter maintenance

A basement wall showing mold and damage due to neglected gutter maintenance

Preventing Wood Rot

Clogs can also lead to another serious issue: wood rot. Overflowing water can seep into wood siding, decks, and other structures, causing them to rot and become damaged. Regular gutter cleaning can prevent this problem and keep your wood in good condition.

Woman chasing pests being kept away from your home by regularly cleaning and maintaining your gutters

Woman chasing pests being kept away from your home by regularly cleaning and maintaining your gutters

Keeping Pests Away

In addition to causing damage, this issue can also attract pests like mosquitoes and rodents. These pests can be a nuisance and even a health risk. Maintaining clean gutters can prevent them from taking up residence near your home.

Statistics show that the average cost of repairs in the Toronto or Ontario region can be substantial, with the cost of repairs often being much higher than the cost of regular gutter cleaning and maintenance. In some cases, homeowners have even had to completely replace their eavestrough and downspouts, which can be an expensive and time-consuming process.

person cleaning up leaves during fall the perfect time to clean gutters

Once the leaves have fallen, it’s time to consider your homes gutters.

3. How to Maintain Your Gutters

The best time to maintain your gutters is after the leaves have fallen in autmn or fall. Regular cleaning and inspections are critical to maintaining clean gutters, and there are several steps you can take to keep everything functioning properly.

Regular Cleaning and Inspections

One of the simplest ways to prevent clogs is to clean them regularly. This will help keep the whole system functioning properly and prevent the buildup of leaves, debris, and other materials. Cleaning should be done at least twice a year, and more often if necessary, depending on the amount of debris in your area. When cleaning, it’s important to remove all debris and check for any damage to the gutter system, such as cracks or leaks.

Proper Placement of Downspouts

Another way to prevent clogs is to make sure your downspouts are placed properly. Downspouts should be positioned away from your home’s foundation to prevent water from flowing back into the system. This will help keep your entire system functioning properly and prevent water damage to your home.

Using Gutter Covers and Screens

Gutter covers and screens can be used to keep leaves, debris, and other materials from entering your gutters. These products can be installed on top of your gutters to prevent clogging and maintain proper function. This can provide an extra layer of protection for your home and help keep your gutters functioning properly.

A professional gutter cleaner inspecting a clean gutter

Skilled technician ensuring everything is working right!

4. Why Hiring a Professional is Worth the Investment

Hiring a professional gutter cleaning and repair service is not just about convenience, it’s about ensuring the performance and longevity of your property. A well-maintained gutter system is like a strong immune system, keeping your home safe from all kinds of hazards. Here are a few reasons why hiring professionals is the way to go:

Expertise at Your Service

Professional gutter cleaning and repair services have the expertise and experience to properly maintain and repair your gutters, ensuring that they are in good condition and functioning properly. With their specialized tools and training, they can detect and fix any issues that may arise, saving you the time and hassle of trying to figure it out yourself.

Cost-Effective in the Long Run

Preventing expensive problems from occurring in the future can be more cost-effective than fixing them after they have occurred. A clogged gutter system can cause extensive damage to your roof, foundation, and wood, leading to costly repairs. Hiring a professional gutter cleaning service to maintain your gutters regularly can prevent these costly problems from ever happening in the first place.

Regular Maintenance for a Healthier Home

Regular maintenance can help prevent clogs and other issues from occurring in the first place. Like regular check-ups with a doctor, regular maintenance can ensure that any potential issues are caught early and resolved before they become bigger problems. A professional gutter cleaning and repair service can provide you with a comprehensive maintenance plan, tailored to your specific needs, to keep your gutters functioning properly for years to come.

Final Thoughts

If you’re unable to clean your gutters yourself, or if you’re not sure how to properly maintain them, it’s best to hire a professional. Eavestrough cleaning services are often affordable and can provide a thorough cleaning, inspection, and maintenance of your gutter system. This can help prevent clogs, water damage, and costly repairs.