Most people go in and out of their homes each day without much thought to the exterior. One of the most overlooked exterior features is the gutter system. It’s critical to the protection of your home but is often overlooked. While gutters don’t really do anything for you unless it rains, it’s important to make sure they’re installed properly, clean, and able to function. Failure to do so could allow water to create some serious damage to the sides of your home.
Why are Gutters So Important?
Uncontrolled rainwater can work its way between the panels of your siding, wood, or bricks, even if those things are meant to help protect your home from nature’s elements. If water runs down the sides of your home it can also collect behind your window frames or pool in areas it shouldn’t. Over time, you could end up with costly rot or mold damage that will need to be repaired.
You’ve seen the gutters along the lanes of a bowling alley, right? If the ball falls into the gutter, the gutter directs it to the end of the lane. The gutters on your home work in a similar manner, helping to direct water away from the perimeter of your home. While flood barriers around doors and foundations, like those found at http://www.tmhardware.com/Door-Flood-Barrier-Shield.html, can offer some protection, you’ll still need to make sure the majority of the water is directed away to avoid erosion and damage to the structural integrity of your home.
How are Gutters Installed?
The process is almost always completed by professionals and is relatively simple. If you do it on your own, you’ll need more than one person to help. Hangars are installed along the edges of the roof and then the corner and straight sections can be hung. The gutter is also attached to the downspout, which carries the water down to the ground and then splash blocks help to direct it further away from the foundation.
One of the main problems with gutters is the collection of leaves and debris. Make sure you have a leaf cover or screen to keep these things away. You’ll have to clear the screens or, if you don’t have them, clean out your gutters at regular intervals – especially during the fall months where leaves come down rapidly.
Gutter systems come in a wide variety of colors and styles. Choose one that complements your home’s exterior and it’ll add an extra accent to your house. The next time you go outside, check the status of your current system. Have it fixed or replaced if it’s in bad shape.
Image credit – Wikimedia Commons