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Are Your Rain Gutters Doing Their Job?

Are Your Rain Gutters Doing Their Job?

Are your gutters working properly? This probably isn't something you lose sleep over at night. But maybe you should. When your gutters have damage and aren't working the way they should, they can cause hidden damage to your biggest investment -- your home. Use this checklist and maintain your gutters to protect your home.

Avoid hidden damage

What can gutter problems do? A lot. Clogged gutters that overflow cause damage to the fascia board behind the gutters. By collecting and holding rain and moisture in this area, the wood rots.

Gutters never installed properly damage your roof and cause leakage into your attic or damage your roofing. When gutters aren't angled the right way to drain water away from your house, the rain causes destruction to your foundation or seeps into your basement causing a mold problem.

All of these problems happen slowly over time. Before you know it, you have damage that costs a lot to repair. Avoid these problems and check your gutters periodically to make sure they are working right. Here's a quick checklist for you to use to inspect your gutters.

- Check for clogs and be sure all gutters are working. Unclog any gutters and make sure they drain properly.

- Check for broken fasteners. If fasteners are broken, your gutters may not be draining away from your home.

- Make sure your gutters have the right pitch. The gutter should extend 5 feet from the house and slope 1 inch per foot.

- Check for gaps. Look for gaps between the fascia board and where gutters connect to each other. These gaps could cause leaks that rot the fascia board.

- Check for corrosion. Look for holes in your gutters where the metal has corroded away.

If your gutters have any damage, you can repair minor problems like fixing broken fasteners and correcting the pitch. You may just need a good gutter cleaning and possibly add some gutter guards. With major damage, you either need to call a professional to fix the gutters or consider buying new gutters for your home.

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