It makes sense to check up on the gutter system after a winter storm or to remove debris from gutter sections in the spring. However, once the warm weather arrives, you might think that you and gutters can take a break. But summer can offer its own set of unique challenges. Use these tips to protect your gutters from unnecessary wear and tear during the upcoming summer months.
Insects and Pests
Make sure the gutters are dry. Standing water inside the gutter channel is an attractive breeding ground for mosquitoes. It also attracts other types of insects like ants, bees and wasps that require a moist environment in which to thrive.
Keep gutters free of debris. Pests such as squirrels, rats, mice and birds naturally head for the roof and use the loose materials to make nests. While you might welcome birds to your back yard, they’re more entertaining in the bird bath than they are under the eaves of your roof or nesting inside the walls of your home.
Debris build-up in a gutter system isn’t just about preventing clogs. It can be the ideal place for a fire to start, especially during long stretches of days without rain. All it takes is a spark. Clearing away piles of twigs and dry leaves will help eliminate a potential fire hazard.
Too Much Sun
Aluminum gutters and vinyl gutters exposed to too much sun can peel or become discolored, weakening them and decreasing their protection value. Ultraviolet rays actually do more damage to vinyl or plastic gutters by making them brittle and susceptible to any kind of pressure from wind, debris or leaning ladders, which can cause splitting, breaking or shattering. Applying a gutter protection product to the outside of your gutters helps reduce the effects of ultraviolet rays.
Just a Little Trim
Trees dropping leaves and twigs onto the roof and into the gutters encourage debris build-up. But branches scraping against gutter sections whenever it gets windy can put real strain on a gutter system. To prevent potential issues, trim back branches growing too close to the roof and gutters.