Fall Maintenance: Cleaning Out Your Gutters

Here in Michigan, we love our trees and we especially love them in the fall when they start to change color. Michigan has become a popular tourist destination, attracting people from all over the country to come to see our forests’ fantastic metamorphosis. The downside of all these pretty leaves is that they get stuck in our gutters. It may seem like a simple fix but left unchecked, clogged gutters could cost you tens of thousands of dollars in-home repairs.


How To Tell If Your Gutter Is Clogged (From The Ground) overflowing gutter

Usually, the first signs of a clogged gutter are seen from the ground, but by that time, the damage is already being done.

Here are some signs you can spot from the ground that your gutters are clogged.

  • Water spilling over the edges of the gutter.
  • Water collecting around your foundation.
  • Leaks in the basement.
  • Water leaking where your walls and ceiling meet.
  • Water not flowing out the bottom of the downspout.

You can also notice the signs when it is not raining.

  • Eroded drip line in the ground below the gutter.
  • Peeling paint on siding and fascia.
  • Wet, moist, or dirty siding beneath the gutter.
  • Gutters pulling away from the house from too much weight.


Flooding In The Yard

The job of your gutters is to direct water away from your home. When gutters get clogged from leaves and other debris, water can overflow and flood your yard or flower beds below. It can even cause your soil to erode away from the foundation of your house. If you notice water pooling around your foundation during rain then you might want to get a ladder and check on your gutters and downspouts.


Clogged Gutters Can Be a Home For Pests

Gutters clogged with leaves can be an attractive overwintering spot for pests and rodents like mice, squirrels, and mosquitoes. Once they are living on your roof, these pests can gain entry to your home via damaged attic vents, rotting boards, or chimneys. Once inside the home, squirrels and mice can chew through insulation, drywall, and even the occasional electrical wire.


Rotting Boardsdamage due to gutters

When water backs up in your gutters it can get under your shingles and soak through rotten boards where it can leak into your house. Over time, water leaking inside your walls will become soft and rot. These areas can become attractive to other pests like termites and carpenter ants. The added weight of ice and snow in the winter can cause your gutters to pull away or even rip off completely, causing expensive damage to your home and leaving it exposed to the elements.


Foundation Problems

The worst thing you can have is foundation problems. Gutters are designed to keep water away from your foundations. However, when they clog, they can overflow and erode the dirt away from your foundation. Left untreated, this can cause your house to sink and your foundation to crack. Cracked foundations only get worse as more water enters and freezes. Cracked foundations can lead to expensive basement flooding and structural damage that could lower the value of your home significantly.


Make PPM Your Trusted Tree Service

If you are looking to improve your landscape call the tree care experts at PPM Tree Service and Arbor Care. Our tree care experts can plant trees and make sure they grow straight and healthy. We have years of experience pruning, cabling, and removing dangerous trees.

Give us a call at (877) 454-8733 or request a quote here. Hear about the latest news and offers from PPM by following us on Twitter and Facebook. Don’t forget to check out the monthly PPM Tree blog for all your tree care tips and tricks.


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