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Syracuse Roofing: Article About Clogged Gutters

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Though they come in a variety of styles, the home's gutters serve a single purpose: to direct water away from the home in order to prevent damage. In an ideal situation, water during a rainstorm flows freely down the roof in to the gutters. The gutters then guide water to the downspout, where it flows out far from the home. When the gutters are clogged, though, they can't do their job. This can lead to big problems with the roof that must be repaired by a Syracuse roofing company.

In most cases, clogged gutters are caused by falling leaves, particularly in the autumn. However, it's also possible for the gutters to be caused by pine needles and other plant materials. Occasionally, the gutters become so clogged that they become prime material for seeds to start sprouting, and it's possible to see small plants growing from the gutter. A small animal like a bird or a chipmunk can die on the roof get stuck in the gutter.

A simple visual inspection is usually enough to determine that there is a clog in the gutters. During the rain, check whether or not rain is coming out of the downspout. If the rain flows freely out, the gutters are probably fine. If it comes out slowly, there's a good chance that debris is starting to build up, but there are still spaces for the water to seep around.

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Even when the sun shines, there may be ways to spot signs of clogged gutters. For instance, a small area of the roof near the gutters can appear damaged from soaking in standing water, and the sides of the home may be stained by water leaking out of the gutters.

On a single-story home, it's probably possible for the homeowner to take out a ladder and look for the clogs, scooping out the sludge from problem areas. In multi-story homes, though, it can be safer to hire a professional. Homeowners may also need professional help when the clog is located in the downspout.

Preventing clogs is essential to protecting the home from water damage. Regular cleaning can be a big help, but recently, homeowners are choosing to install gutter screens. Like the name implies, these are placed on top of the gutter and are able to screen out larger pieces of debris, allowing water to flow more freely.

Gutter checks should be a part of regular roof inspections, but it's smart to pay attention to them at all times. Whenever there are signs of clogs, take care of the problem immediately. Call on professional roofers if necessary.

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