We all have fears about our house burning down because we left the stove on. This is a silly thing to worry about when we take into consideration a far more sinister threat to our home. Namely, flooding occurs quite often and water damage is actually the biggest danger a residential structure faces during its lifetime. Unless there are major floods in your area, the direction the water will pour inside the house is the roof and faulty gutters that will direct water inside the building. That is why proper maintenance of the roof structure and the gutters are essential when it comes to protection against water damage.
When you see water coming down the walls of your living room or dripping from the ceiling all over the furniture, it is too late to do anything. That is why you need be on the lookout for tell-tale signs that something is wrong with your drainage system. These are most easily observed from the yard, as any sagging of the gutters or a hole inside them indicate that something is wrong. If you feel capable enough, you can lean a ladder against the house and get out there to carry out a more thorough check and detect the problem from up-close.
Debris in the Gutters
Gutters should be unobstructed so they can direct the water from the roof to the drain below without any major hiccups. The biggest issue with the flow of water is debris that clogs the gutters, creating a small pond that has nowhere else to go but downwards and straight into the house. The most common type of debris is fallen leaves that have the potential to completely close the gutters. Furthermore, any object that ends up on the roof, like a football or branches flown in by birds, can add to the clog, making it harder for water to pass. That is why you need to remove such debris using a ladder and a broom or a rake. Just be careful not to damage the gutters in the process!
Mechanical damage to the gutters is just one of the reasons why they might malfunction, as old age and corrosion are other ones, so you need to buy the best quality gutters when building the house. If you are not the first owner of the property, then be sure to replace any parts of the gutter system that you are doubtful of. Companies such as Interline Manufacturing offer a wide assortment of parts like clip straps, brackets, and stop ends. Any of these parts could be damaged because they have been exposed to severe weather for decades on end.
Although any major repairs to the roof structure need to be carried out by professionals, you are not powerless yourself. Any smaller leaks that you detect that aren’t bigger than a few centimetres in diameter can be sealed off using silicone caulk. When used properly mounted onto a caulk gun, it is easy to apply, so a steady hand guarantees that the repair will be quick, safe, and cost-effective. Just don’t forget to spread the silicone over a wider area because the problem area needs to be 100% waterproof.
Another easy fix that can save you a lot of money is tightening joints on downspouts. If you see water gushing out of the vertical sprout, then its inner seam might have given way. Lucky, these are joined together using bolts that you can use pliers to tighten and restore the sprouts’ structural integrity.
Preventing water damage is a battle that starts (and luckily, ends) on the roof of your house. Good-quality gutters and a roof without leaks will ensure that your home remains dry from the inside even during the heaviest of showers.