April showers might bring spring flowers, but they can also bring a lot of damage to your home if you’re not prepared.
Did you know that Virginia Beach and the surrounding Hampton Roads cities get an average of over 9” of rain during the spring season? And as the seasons change some of that precipitation comes in the form of severe weather, which can dump several inches of rain over the course of just a few hours. If you’ve lived in the Tidewater region long enough, you’ve surely been caught in one of those spring deluges.
Those same pop-up storms that can put a kink in your commute, delay your kids’ baseball games or ruin a nice day at the beach can also negatively impact your home. This is especially true if your home doesn’t have functional gutters.
Why Should Your Home Have Gutters?
Gutters play a critical role in protecting your home’s roof and foundation. When a roofline doesn’t have gutters, water sheets off the roof and straight down to the base of the house. This creates pooling water around your foundation which can cause long-term moisture damage. Moisture at the foundation level of your home can result in mold, mildew, termites and structural damage.
When water isn’t properly channeled off a roof, it can also cause water damage to the vertical surfaces of your house including walls and windows. Leaky windows, wood rot or discoloration can occur.
Gutters also protect your landscaping. By moving water through a downspout into a drain or appropriate area of the yard, you can help prevent erosion in your garden beds, losing costly topsoil, mulch or plants.
How to Maintain Your Gutters
Gutters should be cleaned annually or preferably semiannually. We always recommend using a professional company for this task as doing it yourself is dangerous and could result in serious injury.
When gutters are not cleaned out regularly, they can actually cause just as much damage as not having gutters at all. Water will sheet over a filled gutter, causing the same problems as we mentioned above. Clogged gutters can also cause water to back up toward the roofline, pushing water up underneath shingles and potentially damaging your roof’s decking.
In addition to having gutters cleaned out each year, make sure all gutters are securely attached to the roofline and all downspouts are secured to the corners or sides of your house. Check to see that the areas where the downspouts direct water is clean and cleared as well as directing water away from your home’s foundation.
Inspect gutters and downspouts from the ground for holes or punctures. These could cause water to leak onto the sides of your house or into your windows. If you notice a gutter has any damage, contact a local roofing company or other licensed contractor who is experienced in gutter installation and repairs.
What to Look for in a Gutter
Not all gutters are created equal. In precipitation-prone areas like coastal Virginia, high-capacity gutters can be particularly useful. If you’re installing or replacing the gutters on your home, look for a system like our Rapid Rain Gutter System™ that has a high-volume control of water flow but is designed to look like a traditional 5” gutter.
Pay attention to the metal quality and thickness – you don’t want anything that is so thin that you have to worry about punctures from trees or other debris during storms. You’ll also want something that is visually appealing next to the siding or brick on your home as well as your roof color, so look for a manufacturer that offers a wide variety of colors. Make sure the material is covered under a warranty, even for things like scratches, which can quickly become rusted and unsightly.
You may also want to look into some type of gutter guards, especially if your home is surrounded by trees or other vegetation. Our MicroGuard system has over 48 perforations per square inch to keep out the smallest debris while allowing water to flow through easily.
Where to Go for Gutters
Always use a licensed and insured contractor for gutter repairs and installation, and make sure their work and products are warrantied and that they have an upstanding reputation in your local community.
At Andrews Roofing, we provide installation and maintenance of our Rapid Rain Gutter Systems™, and we stand behind the product with a lifetime ScratchGuard™ guarantee and our reputation for quality and satisfaction. Installing gutters is a smart investment that can prevent costly repairs and help maintain the value of your home. Contact us today for more information about installing gutters on your home.