Oh sweet, sweet summer.. slowly turning to fall in its vivid, vibrant glory.

fall-leave-gpxI stand at my kitchen window each morning, overlooking the sprawling old (& messy) locust tree & my barren patio. I slowly sip my coffee & mentally make a note for myself to get out there and start with the transitional work on the yard from summer to fall. Autumn is my favorite season, but I grow nostalgic for my poor hibiscus that is barely able to force out its blooms,  for my daisies that stopped reaching up at the sun weeks ago &, well, my tomato plants which have all but shed their very roots.

Such a bittersweet feeling, parting with the warmth of  summer sun, sand in your toes, sticky nights, freckled by the flashing bulbs  of lightening bugs evening soiree performance. (Sigh) As we move out of summer & into autumn, we look forward to pumpkins, belly-warming stews, cider, bonfires, warm cozy sweaters, plush soft socks, scarves …& falling leaves… the very pesky leaves that get trapped in our gutters & downspouts, leaving nowhere for the looming melt of winter snow or forecasted rain to go. Causing one of the most inconvenient of all chores right next to shoveling- (Gasp-I  shouldn’t even speak that word!) — gutter cleaning!

As we come into the cooler months with seasons changing as rapidly as they do in Wisconsin, inevitably we face the emptying of surrounding trees and need take to take necessary steps  to avoid the plush collection of fall décor in our gutters. (Perhaps one  take advantage. Harvest decoration in the store isn’t even real, not to mention  pricey $$) :)

Let’s face it, gutter cleaning is an unpleasant and time-consuming job for anyone no matter where you are on the map. Unsafe ladders, gutter cleaning tools, tarping the yard, countered by the added fight against any stubborn clog – it truly is no way to spend your weekend, but you have to tend to the outdoor barriers on your home to avoid costly fixes in the future.

Weather Tight offers a great gutter protection system that will keep leaves & debris out of your gutters. However, if you haven’t had the opportunity to have us out just yet for a quote– & need to tend to one last minute cleaning- here are some friendly pro-active tips for your fall yard duties.

  • Tip# 1

Don’t hesitate until the absolute last minute to clean or flush your gutters. There is often a lot of debris left over from winter thaw and summer that can contribute to even bigger clogs that can severely damage the function of your gutters. We recommend cleaning the gutters about twice a month during the fall months. (It is especially important to maintain your gutters if they are old in age.) Build up of debris combined with any standing rain fall, leave your gutters vulnerable to weight that can cause them to disconnect from the home. Even worse if they do disconnect, you run the chance of a very expensive repair if the gutter is damaged on the way down. This is especially important if the clog is present in a longer run of gutter that extends through a corner. If gutters stay clogged for too long- & rainfall or melting snow occur- water will pour over your gutter leaving the water to accumulate at the base of your home- which could cause for an even pricier foundation or basement damage long term.

  • Tip #2 

Preventative maintenance in your yard holds significant importance.  Make sure you are cutting or trimming trees that obstruct your gutters or roof, as well as any areas where the trees hang over  your home as well. If you have not cleaned your gutters since last fall, you will more likely than not have some left over debris from winter and most likely some summer debris obstructing a clear, effective flow.

  • Tip #3

Don’t forget your downspouts! If the clog is rooted in the downspout, any water that collects in the gutter will create standing water. If nothing is able to pass through, any debris or leaves in your gutters can obstruct water from passing through the length of the gutter, making it impossible for water to evacuate out through the downspout properly. This can cause unsightly leaks through out the gutter system on the home. It is especially important to clear the gutters before we reach temperatures that will allow for freezing. Once frozen – we have to wait for the thaw to be able to clean the gutters or attend to a clog that was not handled.  As well as post-pone any repairs until the gutters aren’t frozen. I have seen this cause issues with ice damming, over flow, run-off & weighting the gutter down to the point it snaps off of the home. Not only can this be dangerous in commonly used traffic area of the home, it can cause issues with any melting ice on the roof as the temperatures fluctuate in the early winter months & into the spring, which have been known to cause foundation issues in the later years. Its always best to be sure you have taken the steps to clearing your gutters & downspouts for maximum product efficiency.

  • Tip #4

Once you have cleared all of the debris out of your gutters and downspouts, take a garden hose & run from the beginning of the gutter run. Allow the water to flow with a good vigor to loosen up any small, left over debris that has become lodged in the seams, brackets, elbow extensions or miters. You may run the water as long as you feel necessary or depending on how much debris was removed from the gutter. This will help run a clear path for anything that will catch in the gutters this season, as well as hit the hard to reach places on your gutter system.

  • Tip #5

Lastly- Get yourself a sturdy, reliable, ladder that is right for the job. If you don’t want to purchase one – do some research and see what kind of ladder is required to get the job done. See if you can borrow one from a neighbor or a relative or even rent one at a local hardware store. Though this seems like something that doesn’t get a second thought, many people use whatever ladder they have laying around in the garage. A lot of the times, the ladder is not the correct type for the specific job. Many accidents that lead to injury are caused by ladders. Numerous factors contribute to the latter (pun intended). :)  For instance, the ladder may be worn & damaged, incorrectly used or it may be incorrectly placed. In the remodeling industry we cannot stress enough the importance of proper use of tools, your tool for the task at hand is your ladder.  *For a safety how to on proper ladder use, check out the link here.gutter-clog-1

To make things easier, you could skip all of the fuss and fighting with stubborn clogs by having EZ-Sentry Gutter Guard installed on your home by Weather Tight. EZ-Sentry Gutter Guard comes with a lifetime warranty, providing you with many options that best fit your gutter needs. EZ- Sentry Gutter Guard is designed to withstand heavy rainfall, accompanied by a low profile design, while offering gutter guards available in a selection of colors that will best match, or compliment  your gutter or roof. EZ-Sentry Gutter Guard is available with powder coated screens, premium aluminum screens or painted aluminum covers. We offer many different variations & styles depending on your gutter needs. If you need a gutter built to withstand heavy debris, or light to moderate accumulation, we have something that will be sure to get the job done. Give us a call today to schedule your free in-home consultation with one of our qualified representatives  at 414.459.3888 or visit us online at WWW.WEATHERTIGHTCORP.COM