Understanding the Impact of Neglected Guttering: The Importance of Timely Replacement
Oct 03, 2023 02:33
Here is a paradox: homeowners strive to optimize the longevity of their houses, but they often pay no heed to their gutters. However, the latter plays a crucial role in your property’s protection from water damage and other associated issues. Thus, neglected gutters make for a disaster waiting to happen. Not only can they deal a nasty blow to your home’s curb appeal, but they can also contribute to its structural instability. And the list of possible issues doesn’t end here. Do you want to see why the gutter replacement cost may not seem a big deal? Keep reading.
The Most Common Causes of Gutter Damage
In the rainy or snow season, gutters become true workhorses, channeling rainwater and melted snow away from your house around the clock. Even though these constructions are designed to withstand various elements and a lot of abuse, they can sustain damage over time for multiple reasons. Here are the most common causes of gutter damage you should be aware of.
Depending on your climate, your gutters can be exposed to all types of harsh weather throughout the year, from freezing temperatures to strong wind to sweltering heat. The impact is even higher in regions with stormy conditions and heavy snow, as the latter can cause gutters to sag or even break under the weight. Ice dams can also clog the gutter system, causing overflows.
Lack of Maintenance
Regular cleaning is a must for optimal gutter functioning. When you ignore maintenance for a long time, leaves and debris can accumulate inside the gutters, creating blockages. They can impede the water flow and add excess weight to the construction, so sagging and cracks can occur. You can also notice the growth of mold and mildew because of the constant exposure to moisture.
Many homeowners refuse to hire professionals for gutter installation to save a penny. Instead, they go to local home improvement stores and purchase sectional options perfect for DIY. The cost of gutters per foot can be anywhere from $3 to $20, so it feels like a smart move to make. However, installation errors like improper pitch or inadequate securing result in numerous issues.
Neglected gutters are often home to birds, rodents, and various insects. They can form nests and gnaw through the gutter, creating blockages and structural damage. In severe cases, a total gutter replacement is required.
Like any other material, gutters have their service life. And natural wear and tear due to constant exposure to the elements results in various problems. Your gutters can rust, corrode, crack, and stop effectively draining rainwater away from your home. Aluminum and steel options are especially susceptible to these issues.
The Consequences of Neglecting Gutter Maintenance
When left unmaintained, gutters can quickly become your pain in the neck. You can face numerous unpleasant consequences that can cause significant damage to your home and budget.
Unkept gutters can be clogged with all possible types of debris, from seeds to leaves to pine needles. As a result, rainwater can overflow or seep into the foundation. If you live in a wet state like Florida or Tennessee, it won’t take long to notice that your home is structurally unstable. The telltale signs are exterior wall cracks, bouncy floors, and musty smells.
Home Exterior Problems
No matter how hard you try to boost your home’s curb appeal, your efforts will fail if your gutter doesn’t function well. Water overflow can easily disfigure the aesthetics of your property by leaving stains on the sidings or the brickwork. On top of that, wooden parts of your home, like fascia boards, window frames, and support beams, can deteriorate and start rotting. Please note that new gutters cost less than water damage repairs.
Chronic dampness combined with a buildup of leaves and other debris makes for an ideal environment for mold growth. While it can affect the look of your home, it can also pose severe health risks like respiratory issues and oncological diseases. If you have asthma attacks or any allergic reactions, you have a higher risk of severe illness resulting from mold and mildew growth.
Malfunctioning gutters can wreak havoc on your beautiful yard and garden. Overflowing means that excess water pours undirected from clogged gutters. As a result, it can cause soil erosion and even wash away your greenery. Rare plants and trees can withstand such conditions for too long. In turn, a lopsided and unsightly yard can severely limit the aesthetic appeal of a property, lowering its market price
How Much Does It Cost to Replace Gutters?
Ignoring the problems doesn’t make it vanish away. If you’ve noticed that your gutters are damaged or broken, you need to schedule professional service or check everything yourself if you have the necessary knowledge. The average cost of gutter replacement falls between $330 to $5,800 for a standard home that requires 150-200 feet of gutter. Your expenses can be higher or lower, depending on various factors like the selected gutter material and the complexity of the installation process.
If you run out of money, you can go for vinyl gutters, which are the cheapest. Even though they won’t serve you as long as aluminum or copper gutters, they can save your home from water damage when needed.
You can’t just install gutters and call it a day. Otherwise, they will develop various problems that can snowball and harm the aesthetic appeal of your home and its structural integrity. Thus, you can end up dealing with serious and costly water damage consequences. That’s why it is worth scheduling regular inspections of your gutter system with follow-up cleaning and repair services when necessary.
If your gutters are damaged or worn out to function correctly, a timely replacement becomes an investment rather than an expense. Even though it may feel like a burden at first, staying on top of your guttering needs will pay off in the days to come.
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