5 Expensive Problems Caused by Clogged Gutters

Gutter Cleaning

Ah, the pleasures of fall in Colorado. The cooler weather, the bonfires, watching the colorful leaves on the trees as they flutter into your gutters and clog them up…

Okay, so it’s not all pleasant. Having to totter on a ladder while digging rotting leaves and gunk out of your gutters is not a fun job. But if you’re a homeowner, it’s well worth the time and aggravation to do so. Why? Gutters and downspouts are designed to redirect water away from your home. But when they become clogged, gutters can cause a long list of water-related problems that can be damaging to your home and expensive to fix.

So this year, don’t put off this needed chore. Need some inspiration? Then ponder over the following five problems often caused by clogged gutters.

What Can Happen if Gutters Aren’t Cleaned

  1. Weakened foundation: Depending on the size of your home, every inch of rainfall can translate to over 1000 gallons of water pouring down your roof! When gutters function properly, that water will flow through a downspout and away from your home. But when clogged, water will overflow gutters and pour down your walls. Pooling water around your foundation can cause erosion, leading to foundation cracks and settling which can weaken the structure of your home.
  2. Destroyed gutters: When your gutters are clogged and the water has no place to go, they can become very heavy. A gallon of water weighs over 8 pounds and just one foot of gutter can hold up to 2 gallons. Add that to the mass of dead leaves and other gunk and you can see how all that extra weight can bend your gutters or tear them away from the roof.
  3. Wall and ceiling damage: Trapped water from clogged gutters can rot the wooden fascia boards your gutters are mounted to, allowing moisture to enter your home. And during our Colorado winters, clogged gutters can help create ice dams which can drive snow to melt underneath your shingles.
  4. Wet basement: If your basement hasn’t been waterproofed, the water pouring down your foundation due to clogged gutters can seep through your basement’s porous walls and floor, leading to a damp basement. And where it’s damp and dark, mold can easily begin to grow, quickly becoming a problem.
  5. Insect invasions: Nobody wants mosquitos buzzing around in their backyard. But pooling water in your gutters is a perfect breeding ground for them. Mud and damp leaves can also be a welcoming spot for bees and wasps to build their nests.

So now you know what can happen if you don’t clean your gutters. But the good news is that it’s not usually a difficult fix. But before you drag out your ladder, here are some tips for doing the job safely.

What You Need to Know Before Cleaning Your Gutters

  • Ladder safety 101: Your ladder should be sturdy, safe, and long enough for the job. The two hinged metal braces (spreaders) should be locked down and straight. Never set it on uneven ground and never sit or stand on the very top step of the ladder.
  • Use the appropriate tools: Thick leather gloves, protective eyewear, and long sleeves add an additional layer of protection against bacteria, cuts, and pests. A scooping tool and bucket are helpful when cleaning out and disposing of debris. A garden hose is also useful in washing away mud and unclogging downspouts. 
  • Know your limitations: If the job is too physically demanding, or you’re not comfortable in high places, or you just don’t want to deal with it yourself, contact a professional to clean your gutters. The cost will vary depending on the size of your home.

If clogged gutters have caused water damage issues in your Pueblo, Leadville & Colorado home, contact Cyclone Kleen Up immediately. Water damage does not just go away. In fact, the longer it’s left unattended, the worse it’ll get – causing everything from structural damage to mold infestations. Our state-of-the-art equipment and technology will dry your home and we’ll also repair the damage!