Minnesota Seamless Gutters and Downspouts
Don’t let the recent warmer than usual temperatures in Minnesota fool you. Winter is in full swing, and heavy snowfall can arrive at any time. Take advantage of this mild weather and inspect your roof, if you haven’t done so already within the past few months. Are your roof and gutters ready for snow, ice and heavy snowmelt?
Don’t Neglect Your Gutters This Winter
Just because it often doesn’t rain during the winter does not mean you should neglect your gutters. Gutters clogged up with leaves and debris from the fall can easily lead to ice dams. Ice dams will not only add excessive weight to your gutters, potentially damaging them, but the can also lead to expensive roof and soffit damage. That last thing you want to be doing on a cold winter day is addressing roof damage, water damage or wet basement problems from water leaking inside your home. Be sure to clean out your gutters and downspouts while the weather is still reasonably comfortable.
During winter, snow and ice build-up on your roof can create serious problems for your home. An ice dam can form along your home’s gutter system and allow water to seep under your roof, into your attic and down into the structure of your home. An ice dam is a ridge of ice that forms at the edge of a roof and prevents melting snow (water) from draining off the roof. The water that backs up behind the dam can leak into a home and cause damage to walls, ceilings, insulation, and other areas.
When snow is not cleared off a roof with an ice dam, the situation will only worsen. Removing significant snow buildup on a roof will temporarily stop the formation of ice dams, and could save you costly repairs.
In addition to ice damming, there are other dangers associated with a heavy snow load on your roof:
- Roof leaks
- Gutter clogs and back-up
- Skylight leaking and cracking
- Roof collapse from the sheer weight of wet, heavy snow
Keep Your Gutters Clean To Avoid Ice Dams
- Check the roof framing structure to verify that it has not weakened. Focus on looking for uneven areas which may indicate damage to the roof deck beneath the shingles.
- Examine your gutter system and make sure it’s not clogged with leaves, debris, or branches. Clean gutters are important in the winter so rainwater and snow have a way off the roof.
- Ensure gutters are properly attached to the side of the roof. Make sure they are fastened tightly so that no water overflows or falls off of the fascia board.
- Inspect roof valleys and make sure no debris has built up. This can add additional weight to your roof and can act as a barrier to the rain and snow.
Keep your gutters clean of all debris, leaves, and twigs or have some seamless gutters with gutter guards installed so when the sun melts the snow and it reaches the clean gutters it runs down the downspout and out onto the ground and away from your house.
If you are unwilling or unable to do your own gutter maintenance, repair or installation, there are some very reputable Minnesota gutter installers that can provide this service.
There are a lot more fun things to spend your time on this winter other than dealing with ice damming. Winter will be all over before you know it; and then it’s time to prepare your home for the summer.