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Parts of a gutter system

The first part of a gutter system is the gutter itself.  After debris collects on top of the roof it is collected into the gutter system.  The liquid and smaller particles are then washed down the downspouts.  The size of your downspout correlates with the size of your roof, so the bigger one is the larger the other must be.  After flowing down, the liquid is drained.  You must pick a good spot for the drainage to flow to, or it could come back into the basement and affect important factors such as the foundation of the building.

Making sure water has an unobstructed path helps keep it out of your foundation.

Making sure water has an unobstructed path helps keep it out of your foundation.

 How to protect your gutter system

The estimated life expectancy for an average aluminum gutter is about 20-30 years, however proper care is important for getting the most out of the product.  Cooper gutters can last up to 50 years and steel usually less than 20.  When leaning ladders against your gutter, be sure you do so with care to prevent damage.  Also, the weather can impact your gutters.

It is also important to keep your gutters cleaned out.  Loose debris can clump and cause clogging, making it difficult to drain.  Damaged or clogged gutters can also cause trouble that could be detrimental to your home.  Little things like paint damage all the way up to basement flooding and fire hazards.  Pests, ice formation, and storm damage are large factors to damaged gutters.

 How to maintain your gutter system

Gutters and roofs all require routine maintenance.  Open rain gutters should be cleaned twice a year, once after the Spring when seeds collect, and in the fall when the leaves collect.  Depending on where your home or building is located, additional cleanings may be necessary.  Cleaning your gutters can be difficult, so with safety in mind call a professional for help if needed.