Gutters affect the health of your roof and home. They need, in the least, annual maintenance to work properly. However, the more trees you own, the more often you should clean your gutters (i.e. spring and fall).
Gutter cleaning is something you can do yourself, but roof work can be dangerous. The Consumer Products Safety Commission estimates that more than 240,000 Americans end up in emergency yearly thanks to ladder-related accidents. Still, not cleaning the gutters puts your home at risk.
Clogged gutters can cause water damage to both the interior and exterior of your home. Gutters control the flow of rainwater, so when debris obstructs them, the water seeks new routes. Even if this does not lead to water entering your home, overflow can damage your exterior paint and siding.
Debris in the gutters adds weight to your roof. When it rains, this debris grows heavier as it absorbs the water. Consequently, your gutters put more stresses on the hanging brackets and can pull away. Falling gutters are a major hazard and a costly repair! They can also cause rotting along the trim of your home.
Ice dams occur in the winter when water overflows and then freezes. Ice dams threaten both leaks and loose gutters. In fact, blocked water sometimes runs underneath your shingles before it freezes. Because water expands in its solid state, this pushes up on your shingles and causes serious damage.
Debris makes for nice bedding and can invite unwanted visitors into your home. From ants to rats, clogged gutters attract all sorts of wildlife!