3 Reasons You Should Hire a Professional Gutter Cleaning Company

gutter cleaning companyThe winter is finally over and it’s time to start preparing for the nice weather. No matter what kind of roof you have on your home, new or old, it’s important to make sure your gutters are 100% clean and properly functioning. Keep in mind, the majority of newer roofs are built to withstand loads of snow of between 15 to 30 pounds per square feet, and all that snow can drop down into the gutters and cause serious issues.

Neglecting your gutters can end up costing you hundreds or even thousands of dollars. Even though cleaning out leaves and snow piles might not sound all that significant, it’s essential you keep your gutters cleaned and well-maintained.

Here are some reasons it’s important to have your gutters thoroughly cleaned by skilled professionals:

  1. Leaves can fall all year-round — In high-yield environments, leaves can fall and pile up inside gutters constantly and lead to serious structural damage. You can’t just wait until the final leaf falls onto your home to clean out your gutters — you need to have them professionally cleaned every few months.
  2. Leaves and snow aren’t the only things inside gutters — Unfortunately, leaves, water, and snow — though damaging — aren’t the worse things that can be found in your gutters. Gutters can act as ticking time bombs filled with bird droppings, insects, and even rodents. All that can pile up and can become so heavy that they drop and completely wreck your home, leaving the bottom of your property filled with all that disgusting debris. If you believe there are any signs of pileup inside your gutters, give a professional gutter cleaning company a call right away.
  3. Your home’s foundation is at risk — Neglecting to clean your gutters isn’t just important for maintaining a clean home environment, it’s also essential for protecting the entire structural foundation of your property. Water and grime can pile up and overflow outside of your gutters, causing your home’s foundation to crack and become severely damaged, resulting in even higher repair costs. Again, to make sure your home is protected, give an experienced gutter cleaning company a call right away.

If you’re in need of gutter installation, leaf guard installation, gutter replacement, or are still wondering why should you hire a gutter cleaning company, give Gutter Maid a call today.

4 Ways You Can Tell It’s Time to Have Your Gutters Replaced

gutter replacementIf you’re a homeowner, you probably know how important gutters are to your home’s structural integrity. They trap any water from rain or snow that’s melted and prevent it from coming into your home.

You know how important it is to take care of your roof. Roof cleaning will allow the homeowner to maximize their shingle life up to 20 to 25 years and sometimes even longer. While you’re up on your roof doing some cleaning, why not take a look at your gutters? If your gutters aren’t working properly, serious problems like leaks, flooding, and home damages can occur. Check your gutters to see if they need to be cleaned out or even replaced completely. So, how can you tell if it’s time for a gutter replacement? Here are a few signs.

Water Leaks
The first sign that it might be time for gutter replacement is if you find water leaking into your ceiling or walls. These leaks can leave brown or yellow marks inside your home and can also start to destroy your house’s foundation. Reaching out to a gutter replacement service to have the work done is the easiest way to prevent any major home problems.

Cracks
Another sign you may need your gutters replaced is if you notice cracks in the gutter lining. The cracks may seem minor at the beginning, but over time, they can develop into big holes causing major leaks. Check your gutters on a monthly basis to make sure there aren’t any cracks, and if there are, simply reach out to a repair and replacement service.

Rust
Typically you’ll be able to tell if your gutters are rusty just from looking at them from the ground. However, that’s usually the case if the rust has gotten past the point of repair. Your gutters can become rusty from things like leaves and other environmental debris over time. If you notice that your gutters are even slightly starting to rust, call a professional replacement service.

Broken and Falling Off
This one might be obvious, but if your gutters are falling off of your house and drooping, you should have them replaced. Since the gutters are attached to your house directly, any pulling or tearing from the gutters can do a number on your roof and siding. If the gutter was to fall off completely, it might take a part of your home with it. Prevent this from happening by addressing the issue as early as possible.

If you notice any of the above problems, reach out to gutter installation services or consider hiring a professional gutter cleaning company. They will be able to tell you exactly what needs to be done and when. They will also be able to address any specific questions you may have, all while helping you protect your home from damages.

Gutter Cleaning and Maintenance: Beware of These 4 Warning Signs

professional gutter cleanersHomeowners have many responsibilities, and taking care of their gutters can often fall by the wayside. Neglecting gutter care, however, can lead to some serious structural issues and result in shelling out a significant amount of money for repairs.

That’s why it’s best to not only take care of your gutters yourself but hire professional gutter cleaners to fully ensure all aspects of your home are protected. Here are some reasons to call professional gutter cleaners in order to take full advantage of their gutter cleaning services:

  • Damage of any kind — Even the slightest crack in your gutters can turn into major problems and result in you spending a lot of money for large repairs. However, when you hire professional gutter cleaning technicians to take a look at your gutters early enough, they will be able to identify any problems and address them right away.
  • A lot of rainfall is expected — If your gutters are clogged prior to a major storm, even a few hours of rainfall can completely wreck your gutters. In fact, even an inch of summer rainfall can accumulate nearly 1,500 gallons of water onto your roof and gutters.
  • Water pooling around your home’s foundation — Just because your gutters seem fine from afar doesn’t mean they are in good shape. Don’t just look at your gutters to find out if they are in jeopardy of causing problems. If you notice any water accumulation surrounding your home, that could indicate that your gutters aren’t functioning properly and need to be thoroughly cleaned and possibly repaired.
  • Water damage underneath your gutters — Similarly, if there are any signs of water damage to your home’s structure, you should contact skilled gutter professionals. This kind of water intrusion can wreak havoc on your home’s foundation.

If you’re in need of gutter replacement, gutter installation, or just need professional gutter cleaners to take a look at your home, give Gutter Maid a call.

Gutter Cleaning from Start to Finish

Check out these photos video showing our gutter cleaning process from start to finish! First we remove all loose debris by hand before cleaning and flushing all of the gutters and downspouts with water. Clean gutters = happy gutters (and homeowners!)

Pipe Collar Repair Before & After

See our previous post here about pipe collars and their functions.

Below is an infographic showing our pipe collar repair process. When we complete gutter cleanings for our customers, we always check the condition of each pipe collar. If a pipe collar is damaged we can generally repair it right there on the spot for a minimal cost to the homeowner. This is because we carry replacement rubber gaskets on all of our trucks. By replacing the damaged part of the pipe collar only, we are able to complete the repair quickly and easily, preventing costly water damage while also saving the customer money.

Leaf Guard Installation

Leaf guards are the best way to protect your gutters from leaves and other debris, especially during this time of year. Leaf guards are a built-on barrier that attaches to your gutter and prevents leaves and debris from entering your gutters and downspouts. They also make gutter cleaning much easier, as most debris will sit on top of the leaf guards rather than inside the gutter. After our technicians clean and flush out your gutters to GutterMaid standards, the leaf guards are then installed as shown in the infographic below. GutterMaid offers 4 different types of leaf protection systems. You may find out more information about each of them here. Check out this before & after showing GutterMaid’s leaf guard installation process from start to finish, and contact us today for your free estimate!

Pipe Collar Repair

Have you ever wondered what the pipes extruding through the top of your roof were? Have searched for trusted roofing contractors in Rochester MN who can explain you that? In most cases they are plumbing vents. They are there to allow the water in your plumbing to flow smoothly. They typically range in size from about 2″- 4″, and are sealed water tight with a pipe collar or boot. The most common flashing consist of an aluminum base with a rubber gasket that seals tightly around the vent. Unfortunately, while the aluminum base will last a lifetime, the rubber gasket has a much shorter lifespan and can crack and deteriorate, when exposed to the elements, in just a few short years. Cracked or damaged pipe collars will leak water into your attic and cause mold & mildew to grow, or if left alone long enough, can cause even more signification water damage.

When we complete gutter cleanings for our customers, we always check the condition of each pipe collar. If a pipe collar is damaged we can generally repair it right there on the spot for a minimal cost to the homeowner. This is because we carry replacement rubber gaskets on all of our trucks. By replacing the damaged part of the pipe collar only, we are able to complete the repair quickly and easily, preventing costly water damage while also saving the customer money.

Damaged Pipe Collar

Damaged Pipe Collar

Repaired Pipe Collar

Repaired Pipe Collar

Your Gutters Look Different From Our Perspective

“My gutters don’t need to be re-nailed. I can tell from the ground that they are secure to the fascia board”.  The truth is, most of the time when gutters pull away from your home, they are actually tilting forward, allowing water behind your gutters, while appearing from the ground to be tightly secured. Take a look at the pictures below taken at a gutter cleaning we performed in Germantown, MD. From underneath the gutters appear to be secure to the fascia, but from above you can see that they have actually pulled away from the fascia several inches.  If this issue had not been caught early by our technician, it would  have led to costly repairs for this homeowner  in the future.

When you become a client of GutterMaid, you may think you are hiring specialists of house cleaning in Denver or any other city to simply clean your gutters, but that is just part of what we do. We understand that homeowners often times have problems they believe are related to clogged gutters. However, that is sometimes just part of the issue. Our job is to not only clean your gutters but to check, fix, and report on other areas critical to the waterproofing of your home, such as your gutters, roof shingles, and flashing.

Gutter below

gutter below

gutter below close

gutter below close

gutter above

gutter above

gutter above

gutter above

 

 

 

Are Your Gutters Ready For Winter?

It seems as though winter has come early this year with the recent snow events, and while everyone is busy stocking up on food, new snow shovels,  and ice melt, they may have overlooked a very important home maintenance need. You guessed it. Cleaning out the gutters!

Clogged gutters will wreck havoc on your home in the winter time.  As the snow from your roof melts, it should drain through your gutter system and away from your home and foundation. When your gutters and/or downspouts are clogged with debris, the water becomes trapped and has no place to go. This standing water is not quick to evaporate like it is on a hot summer day. Gutters are not meant to withstand the heavy weight of debris, water, and ice buildup. The weight can cause your gutters to pull away from your home, bend, distort, and in some cases completely separate from your home.

Most of us have heard of the term “ice damming” but how many of us truly know what it means? Ice damming happens when the warm air from your home melts the bottom layer of the snow build-up on your roof. In below freezing temperatures, once the water reaches your gutters where it is no longer heated, it will re-freeze. As ice builds up to your roof line it will eventually trap and prevent proper water-shed from your roof. Water will then begin to work its way back up your roof .

Ice Dam

Ice Dam

When water is coming from the bottom up, as it does with ice damming, most waterproofing practices will fail. This is why many of us have experienced leaking during the winter that we do not usually encounter during a typical rain event. If your gutters are not draining properly, ice damming is significantly more likely to occur.

Gutters cannot be cleaned once the temperature drops below freezing. It is vital to have your gutters and downspouts checked and cleared before the winter months arrive. There are only a few more weeks left so don’t procrastinate. Schedule your gutter cleaning service today!

Also find out how to make the home air clean with the EnviroKlenz Mobile UV Unit.

DIY Gutter Cleaning Tips

Of coarse we always recommend hiring a professional to complete your gutter cleanings, but if you decide to tackle this dangerous and tiresome chore yourself, here are a few hints and tips to help you along.

1) Invest in the right tools: Having the right tools is a must to complete any task. You will need an extension ladder tall enough to reach the highest gutter on your home, unless your roof has a shallow enough pitch that you feel comfortable walking on it to access higher gutters. We also recommend using a ladder stand-off to stabilize the ladder, as well as to keep the ladder off of your gutters and prevent from damaging them. Bring a hammer so that you can re-nail any loose gutter spikes, a long hose, Gloves (very important!), a leaf blower to clear off roof debris, a drill with the proper 1/4″ hex head bit to disassemble downspouts if needed, and a clean-out tool for the downspouts. The top elbow section of each downspout is the most vulnerable point for collecting and trapping debris. Bringing a 2′ flexible pipe cleaner, or even a small section of hose can be used, to snake out the top of a clogged downspout and avoid having to disassemble the downspout to remove the clog.

2) Remove all accessible roof debris: Start with the highest part of the roof first and work your way down. A leaf blower really comes in handy here. The last thing you want to do is clean all of your gutters only to have the accumulated debris from your roof fill them up again.

3)Inspect your roof: While you are up on your roof clearing debris, it is a great time to inspect your roof , and its easier than you may think. A) Check for soft spots in the roof. while you are walking you may notice sunken in, distorted, or soft spots in your roof.  These can be signs of possible water intrusion or attic ventilation issues. Check the area around and above the noticed area for punctures in the roof or missing shingles. B)Visually inspect the roof for missing/damaged shingles. Also note the age and general condition of the shingles. The average shingle has a 25 year life expectancy. As shingles age they will become thin as they lose what most people refer to as shingle grit, which you also may notice accumulating in your gutter. C) Check all penetrations in your roof such as fan, dryer, and plumbing vents. It is very common for the rubber gaskets around pipe vents to dry-rot and leak. You can get a few more years out of the pipe collar by sealing around the dry-rotted rubber gasket with a good roofing cement.

4)Clean & clear your gutters and downspouts: Start by removing the debris from your gutters by hand (don’t forget your gloves!). Just like your roof you want to start with the highest gutters first. You can bag the debris as you go on the roof but for safety reasons we recommend just throwing it down on the ground. It is much easier and safer to bag it on the ground. When throwing it down from the roof, try to throw it into piles to make clean-up easier. After you have removed the big stuff by hand we recommend flushing out the small debris and shingle grit left behind using a water hose. This will also help ensure that the downspouts are clear of debris as well. When using a water hose it is important to know where the hose is at all times.  A water hose that is left dangling from the roof  can cause havoc on your landscape, lawn ornaments, flags, etc., when moving around on the roof. We recommend pulling the entire hose up on the roof. Loop the hose around the top of the ladder rung or around a pipe vent to prevent the hose from sliding back down to the ground. Start with the highest gutters at the opposite end of the outlet/downspout. Work the debris to and down the downspout. Check the bottom of the downspout to ensure water is draining properly. If the gutter backs up with water then you most likely have a clogged downspout. Use your downspout tool to try to snake any clogs that may be at the top elbow section of the downspout. If that doesn’t work because the downspout is too severely clogged, or the clog is too far down the downspout, dissembling the downspout me be required.

5)Inspect your gutters: Make sure your gutters are draining properly. Gutters that are holding water are more susceptible to collecting debris, perfect breeding grounds for mosquitoes and other insects, can deteriorate the sealant in end caps, outlets , and miters, and can pull gutters from the fascia due to the added weight. If after flushing your gutters with water, the downspout is not clogged but the gutter is still holding water, your gutter may need to be replaced or re-pitched properly towards the outlet. This can happen due to bent or distorted gutters from improper maintenance or snow accumulation, natural settling of the house, or even a poor initial installation. Make sure your gutters are secured tightly to the fascia boards.Now days most gutters are installed using an internal bracket which is screwed to the fascia board and is not likely to pull loose. However, a lot of people will find that their gutters were installed using what is called a spike and ferrule. The spike looks like a large nail which can be seen from the outside of the gutter. The ferrule is the sleeve in which the spike is driven through and is found inside the gutter. With the weight of  debris and snow accumulation these spikes tend to pull loose from the fascia board which can lead to fascia rot and even total collapse of the gutter. We recommend re-nailing any loose gutter spikes when cleaning your gutters. Using your hammer simply tap on each spike head until the gutter sets firmly to the fascia. You may notice that the spike does not hold and seems loose or keeps pulling away. If this happens call a professional to evaluate your gutters.

When finished with your gutter cleaning, be sure you do not leave any tools up on the roof. If you find any issues with your roof and/or gutters call a professional right away to avoid any costly water related damage that could result in the future. We recommend completing this important home maintenance at least twice a year, once in the spring and once again in the fall. However, every home will vary and you should adjust your gutter cleaning schedule accordingly.

Cleaning your own gutters can be hard work and very dangerous! If you decide to leave it to the professionals GutterMaid is here to help.