Easy Tips to Help Your Home's Gutters Survive a Winter in Michigan

Easy Tips to Help Your Home’s Gutters Survive a Winter in Michigan

September 30, 2019

As winter arrives in town, it brings with it an awful lot of rain, wind and snow. Your home’s roof and gutters will never be under more strain than they are in the wintertime, and as a homeowner you need to do everything in your power to help them get through these months. An overladen gutter can tear right off the side of your house, so it’s important to work with local roofing companies in Traverse City, MI and feel confident your house’s exterior is primed to make it through the winter unscathed.

Clean them out in late fall

If there’s one gutter tip we can offer, it’s this one: you absolutely need to clear your gutters of fallen leaves, sticks and pine needles when winter is approaching. If you’re not comfortable with heights or just don’t want to do the job, many local roofing companies in Traverse City, MI will perform the job for a reasonable fee. If your gutters are filled with debris when the snow and ice start to melt on your roof, this melted water will refreeze in the gutter when it can’t drain. This refrozen ice can wreak havoc on the entire system, putting it under undue stress and increasing the risk of the gutters collapsing.

Trim your trees

Along the same lines, cleaning out your gutters gives you a great excuse to help minimize the debris that can jam them up in the future. For starters, you can trim back branches that hang over your roof. This not only stops them from dropping leaves and needles directly into your gutters, but will also give animals fewer access points. Squirrel infestations in attics are not uncommon during the cold months of winter, and you can help keep them at bay by not offering them an easy pathway from the tree to the inside of your home.

Inspect seams and downspouts

If you’re comfortable being up on the ladder, you should also check the joints where the pieces of gutter meet each other. If you can see daylight or can tell that water can drip through them, it’s time to reseal them using sealant you can buy from any local hardware store. Next, check the anchors that attach the gutter to the fascia boards and replace any of those that need it (look for rust or other deterioration). Finally, make sure the downspouts are securely fastened to the gutters and that they have extensions attached to the bottom. All water should be diverted at least 10 feet from your house to prevent basement flooding, so make sure your downspout extensions reach that far.

Local roofing companies in Traverse City, MI can offer full inspections of your roof and gutters to spot any problems before they become unmanageable. Qualified Roofing is currently offering discounts on flexible scheduling, and we encourage people to act fast—ice dams make it virtually impossible for us to work, so we need to nip any issues in the bud as soon as we can. Call us today for your consultation!

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