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5 Reasons Why Gutter Guards Can Increase Your Home Value

By | Gutter, Homeowners

Don’t ever underestimate the value of a well functioning gutter system. Gutters are a bit of an unsung hero on the exterior of your home.Beige House When they’re working well, they direct water runoff away from your home and help prevent water intrusion. When they’re not working well, your home could be at significant risk. Gutter guards can help keep your gutter system functioning – and they can also help increase your home value in the process.

In this post, we’ll take a closer look at the return on investment that you can generate when gutter guards are installed on your property and some of the reasons why gutter guards are associated with an increase in property value. Here’s a closer look:

How Much Do Gutter Guards Cost?

The cost to outfit your home’s gutter system with guards varies based on the type of guard and the quality of the guard, but generally ranges anywhere from $1,000 to $2,000 when you consider both materials and installation costs for higher-end products. But the key to any return on investment when it comes to your gutter guards is ensuring that you’re selecting a quality type of protective guard and that it is properly installed on your home.

5 Reasons Why Gutter Guards Can Increase Your Home Value

1. They Can Help Prevent Foundation Degradation

Even when your gutters are clogged, the rain and snowmelt runoff still has to go somewhere. In many cases, it will likely spill over and out of your gutter system as water accumulates and can’t properly drain – and it will pool directly below where your gutters are installed near your foundation. This won’t just potentially lead to foundation degradation over time, something that can significantly impact your property’s value, but it can also lead to water intrusion, water damage and even eventual mold growth.

Water should flow freely through the gutter system and the downspouts should evacuate water either at least 10 feet away from your home or in an area where the land grade slopes away from the property. Gutter guards can help ensure proper drainage.

2. They Can Help Prevent Home Water Damage

To piggyback off the above point, gutter guards can help prevent home water damage in a few ways. Like we mentioned above, they can help prevent gutters from overflowing and water from pooling up near the foundation, potentially entering the home and causing property damage.

And two, they can also lend a huge hand during the winter months. In the winter, ice dams can become a major problem. Ice dams form when snow melt re-freezes as it leaves the warm roof shingles and reaches the cooler gutters. If ice dams become too large, they can prevent water runoff from properly draining into the gutters and away from the property. And being that the water still needs some place to go, it could end up seeping through roof shingles and into the attic or ceiling of your home. Gutter guards are made from a variety of materials that aren’t likely to be as cold as gutter guard-less metal gutters, thereby minimizing the potential for snow melt refreeze. They can also ensure the gutter system is clear and can properly drain snow melt when it’s time.

3. They’re Preferred for Their Ease of Maintenance

While gutter guards may require occasional maintenance to ensure that they’re still working properly, maintenance is far less than what you’d have to perform on a conventional gutter system – and that can be an attractive feature for many homebuyers, especially those with mobility issues who may not feel comfortable getting on a ladder to clean out debris several times a year.

Being that gutter guards are designed to effectively block branches, twigs, leaves and other debris from entering the gutter system, potential homebuyers or current property owners will have one less thing to worry about when it comes to exterior home maintenance, and spring and fall cleanups.

4. They Can Help Your Gutters Last Longer

Gutters can last anywhere from 20 to 50 years before replacement is necessary – and gutter guards can ensure that your gutter system doesn’t fail prematurely. That’s because gutters can take a real beating over time. When leaves, branches and other debris accumulate within them, the excess weight may cause them to pull away from the home and sag. Excessive weight and debris in the system can also cause joints to become dislodged and leaks to form in the system. Installing a well functioning gutter guard system can prevent debris accumulation and thereby prevent gutter damage, helping to ensure that the system lasts longer overall.

5. Gutter Guards Can Help Prevent Damage to the Roof & Fascia

Like we’ve said throughout this piece, if water can’t properly drain, it’s going to figure out some other place to go. In some cases, this might be the attic or a pool around your foundation. And in some cases, it might also just hang out on the roof and cause shingle damage or fascia board rot or even damage to your siding. Like we said in the opening, you really shouldn’t underestimate the value of a well functioning gutter system – and gutter guards are purpose-built to help this system continue to function at a high level.

Contact K-Guard Today

For more information on how gutter guards can help increase your home value and also help reduce maintenance and the risk of property damage, contact K-Guard today. K-Guard’s gutter guards feature high-impact, all-weather hangers and use a unique, patented technology to ensure that leaves and debris stay out of your gutter system. Contact K-Guard today for more information or to locate a dealer near you.

How Long Do Rain Gutters Last?

By | Gutter Maintenance, Tips

It depends.

On paper, when they’re maintained and properly cared for, rain gutters can last for at least 20 years. But in addition to proper care and maintenance, there are other factors that play a role in gutter longevity. One is the gutter material. Vinyl, for instance, is a less durable gutter material than steel and aluminum, hence it’s also likely to require replacement sooner – especially in areas that experience significant weather. water coming out of gutter

In this post, we’ll get into why gutters are so important, how to ensure gutter longevity and when to know it’s time to replace your gutters.

Why Are Gutters So Important?

When they’re working properly, gutters play a significant role in preventing water intrusion and foundation degradation to your property.

Simply put, gutters are designed to safely disperse rain runoff and snow melt away from your property so that it’s not pooling or puddling up around your foundation. When this occurs, so too does the potential for water intrusion. If even a small amount of water enters your property, it can lead to significant water damage in the lower levels of your home. Water damage restoration is costly and can also lead to subsequent problems such as mold growth.

Ideally, your gutter system is free flowing and downspouts are positioned so that water is draining away from your home and not toward it. If your gutters are obstructed, then water is likely to fill and pour over directly onto the ground beneath them, which can result in foundation problems. The excess weight can also cause the gutters to sag and pull away from the home. And if downspouts are not positioned properly, then they’ll likely lead to water pooling around the foundation and not safely draining away from it. This, too, can lead to significant issues.

Tips to Ensure Gutter Longevity

So what can be done to ensure gutter longevity? There are many things that you should take into consideration to ensure that your gutters are in good working condition and drain roof runoff properly. Here’s a look:

Clean Them Regularly

You should clean your gutters at least twice a year, more if you live in areas of dense foliage. When leaves, twigs and other debris fall onto your roof, they’re eventually going to make their way into your gutters. When this happens, they can clog downspouts and prevent water from freely draining. Furthermore, the buildup of water and other debris can add significant weight to the gutters, causing them to sag and/or pull away from the roof line. Cleaning the gutters out can help prevent this.

If you don’t like cleaning your gutters, consider investing in gutter guards. These fit directly over the top of your gutters and prevent larger debris from entering your gutters, while still allowing water to easily pass through. Think of them as a gutter filter. Gutter guards can be especially helpful in areas with dense tree cover.

Monitor for Leaks

Gutters take a beating, so over time it’s not uncommon for them to develop leaks – especially around seams where the seal may be a bit more compromised. That said, you should periodically check for leaks and repair them when necessary. It’s fairly simple to do.

The next time it rains, just grab an umbrella and head outside. Walk the perimeter of your home and pay attention to your gutters. Are they freely draining, or are there parts in the system that are leaking? Make sure to repair any leaks to avoid water intrusion issues around your home and prevent small issues from becoming bigger ones.

Trim Back Landscaping

Trees, bushes and other landscaping that may come into contact with your gutters are something you’ll also want to keep an eye on. This is especially true in the winter time, when ice and snowfall can add significant weight to tree branches that may scrape and damage your gutters.

It’s always a good idea to ensure that any trees are properly trimmed so that they do not come into contact with any part of the home. This is best carried out in the fall before the winter months set in.

Be Wary of Ice Dams

Ice dams form when snow melt from the roof refreezes around the roof line or in the gutters during the winter months. When this happens, it can prevent the proper flow of water and potentially even lead to water intrusion into the attic.

There are a few ways to prevent ice dams. One, make sure that your gutters are free of debris so that any runoff can drain freely. Two, you may want to invest in a roof rake, a rake that’s designed specifically for working on the roof of your home. Use it following a significant snowfall to remove snow from the roofline of your home so that water can drain more freely.

Ice dams can add weight to gutters and cause significant damage should they form. Be weary of them during the winter months and take action when necessary.

How to Know When It’s Time to Replace Your Gutters

So let’s bring this post full circle and discuss how to know when it’s time to replace your gutters. Aside from old age, there are a few signs to watch out for:

  • Are they damaged to the point where it would be easier to replace them than repair them?
  • Are nails or fasteners that hold the gutters in place becoming worn?
  • Are the gutters sagging or pulling away from your home?
  • Are the gutters bent, dented or damaged?
  • Are your gutters no longer sloped appropriately to permit water to drain?

Contact K-Guard

For more information on when it’s time to replace your gutters, contact K-Guard today.

3 Tips for Caring for Your Gutters in the Winter

By | Gutter Maintenance

Many property owners are under the assumption that they’ll only need to worry about their gutters during the spring, summer and fall months. After all, that’s the only time it’s going to rain, right?

While that may be true as it pertains to rain, winters present new elements that gutters will need to be able to handle: snow and ice. Noting this, gutters need their fair share of maintenance both in preparing for the cold weather and throughout the season as well.

Suburban house dusted with snow

In this post, we’ll discuss three things that you should be doing to properly care for your gutters this winter. Taking some steps during the fall months before cold weather sets in can help ensure that your gutters are working well when they need to this winter season. 

1. Properly Prep Them for Winter Weather

Proper care and maintenance of your gutters during the winter months starts with prepping them right before the cold weather months set in. There’s a laundry list of things that you should be doing before winter to ensure that your gutters continue to do their job for when temperatures plunge and the snow begins to fall. Here’s a look at some of what should be on your to-do list in late fall:

  • Clean out gutters and downspouts: Gutters are often clogged by leaves and other debris. And when they are, it can greatly impact water flow and disrupt proper drainage. It’s suggested that property owners clean out their gutters at least twice a year, and one of these cleanings should occur during the fall months. If rain and ice melt off the roof isn’t allowed to drain properly during the winter, it’s likely to freeze within the gutters, adding more weight to them and potentially causing them to pull away from the roof line or sag. Poorly draining gutters can also lead to ice dams, which we’ll cover more of in the next section.
  • Inspect them for leaks: This is a good thing to do periodically throughout the year, but especially before winter weather sets in. The next time it rains, grab an umbrella and walk the perimeter of your home. Look for leaks in the gutter system, especially around where gutters meet downspouts. Make sure to address these leaks accordingly to minimize the risk of foundation degradation and water intrusion.
  • Address your landscaping: If you have any trees or landscaping growing near your gutters, you’ll want to take out your trimmer and make sure that any branches are cut back enough to avoid contact with them. High winds in winter often cause branches and limbs to scratch up anything that they come into contact with, and it could lead to damage to your gutters.

2. Be Wary of Ice Dams

Ice dams form when snow melt runs off the roof toward the gutters only to refreeze after the water comes into contact with the gutters. This can prevent water runoff from draining properly and, if ice dams become too significant, can also lead to water seeping through the roof and into the attic or other areas of the home. This, in turn, can lead to some costly water damage restoration.

There are many ways to prevent ice dams from forming, and while some of these methods include ensuring that your attic is properly insulated, we’re going to focus on gutters specifically in this post. Like we said in the above section, you’ll want to make sure that your gutters are free of leaves and debris so that snow melt can properly drain.

Secondly, you may even want to invest in a special roof rake to use this winter. Roof rakes are long-handled, specially designed rakes that will not damage the roof. Property owners can use them following snowfall to rake a few feet of snow off the roof near where the roof line meets the gutters. This will ensure that water can drain more freely and minimize the potential for refreezing. Roof rakes can also be used to break up ice dams if they form.

3. Don’t Forget About Your Downspouts

The downspouts are the parts of the gutters that actually distribute the water runoff away from your home. Ideally, they should be discharging water several feet away from your property, and the areas where they are should be sloped away from the house (and not toward it) to avoid puddling or pooling around the foundation.

Fall is the time to check your downspouts to make sure they’re in good shape and discharging water accordingly. It’s also a good time to make any grading adjustments if the soil is sloping toward your home and not away from it. When the weather begins to get colder, the ground will also harden, making it more difficult to perform any grading.

Contact K-Guard Today

For more information on how to care for and maintain your gutters this winter, contact K-Guard today.

Vinyl vs. Steel vs. Aluminum Gutters

By | Gutter, Homeowners

Gutters perform the important role of safely dispersing water away from your property. They run horizontally along the rooflines of your home, collecting runoff from rain and snow melt, then direct this runoff to downspouts that work to take it away from your property. A well operating gutter system helps avoid the likes of water intrusion and foundation degradation, which are important to avoiding home water damage and mold growth. That’s why it’s so important to ensure water is able to travel freely throughout your gutters and downspouts – and that’s why routine maintenance becomes essential.

Man measuring gutter

But gutters don’t last forever, and when it comes time for replacement, you may be surprised to learn that you have various material options to select from. In this post, we’re going to take a closer look at three popular types of gutters: vinyl, steel and aluminum. We’ll take a look at the pros and cons of each style so that you can make the best decision on what type of new gutters to purchase when it comes time. Here’s a closer look:

Vinyl Gutters

Vinyl, or PVC, gutters are among the most popular types of gutters today for a variety of reasons. But perhaps the No. 1 reason is their affordability, making them ideal for property owners looking to stay on budget with any home improvement project.

Pros

  • Ease of installation: Vinyl is a lightweight material, so it shouldn’t surprise you to learn that vinyl gutters are also lightweight components. This makes them easy to install because they’re easier to handle. This can help you save on labor costs if you choose to have vinyl gutters professionally installed. The lightweight characteristics can also make installation a DIY project.
  • Low maintenance: You won’t have to worry about rust, denting or corrosion when it comes to vinyl gutters.
  • Range of color selection: The options are plentiful when it comes to selecting a color for vinyl gutters.
  • Low cost: Just because it’s worth mentioning again, vinyl gutters are the most affordable type of gutter. The average price is $3 to $5 per 10-foot section.

Cons

  • Not ideal for all climates: Vinyl gutters aren’t recommended for areas that see heavy winters, strong winds or heavy seasonal rainfall. They’re best intended for dry climates.
  • They don’t last long: Though the lightweight nature of vinyl gutters makes them easier to install, they also don’t tend to last as long as other types of gutters. Furthermore, while they avoid some issues, they’re still likely to sag and crack over time. In the right climate, vinyl gutters are a viable option that can last at least 20 years. In the wrong climate, however, they may not even make it a decade.
  • May be more likely to leak: Unlike with metal gutters, vinyl isn’t able to be soldered or properly sealed in areas with seams. This can lead to leakage issues.

Steel Gutters

Though steel is a more expensive choice than vinyl, it makes up for it in durability.

Pros

  • Durability: The biggest benefit of steel gutters is their durability. Steel excels in inclement weather and can stand up to the likes of snow, hail, high winds and heat without damage. If you live in an area that is prone to inclement weather, steel is a great choice for your gutters.
  • Leak proof: Another nice thing about steel gutters is that the seams are often soldered together, forming a seal that helps prevent leakage.
  • Long lasting: Stainless steel gutters can last for several decades with proper care. Because they’re so durable, they won’t sag and they’re not easily dented or damaged.

Cons

  • Steel can rust: Steel gutters typically come in two varieties: galvanized and stainless. Galvanized steel will rust – even if a protective coating is applied. Stainless steel, however, will not rust.
  • Cost: Like we noted earlier, better quality also comes with a higher cost. Steel gutters average $9 to $20 per linear foot, with downspouts costing about $10 per linear foot. It’s a significant price jump from vinyl. Because steel is a heavier material than vinyl, it also costs more to have steel gutters professionally installed.
  • Can be hard to find: A lot of companies don’t carry stainless steel gutters due to their high price, limited selection variety and difficulty to install.
  • Must be painted: Unlike vinyl gutters, which come in just about any color you could want, color options are much more limited with steel. In fact, you may even need to paint stainless steel gutters yourself if you want an exact match.

Aluminum Gutters

Aluminum is an ideal middle option when it comes to gutters. They’re more durable than vinyl, and easier to install and find compared to steel. They’re also the most popular choice for gutters today.

Pros

  • Long lasting: Though they may not last for several decades like stainless steel gutters will, when cared for properly, aluminum gutters can last for at least 20 years.
  • Easy to find: Aluminum gutters are easy to find and come in a range of color options and other styles. And if you can’t find the color that you want, they’re able to be painted.
  • Easy to handle: Like we said in the intro, aluminum is a perfect middle point between vinyl and steel – and this includes weight too. Aluminum is lightweight, yet durable, and easy to handle and install.

Cons

  • The material may corrode: Aluminum won’t rust, but if the gutters are routinely subjected to salt – as is the case in coastal areas – then they may corrode over time.
  • More damage prone than steel: Aluminum is a material that tends to dent fairly easily. While minor knicks and dents aren’t a big deal from a functional standpoint, they may be from an aesthetic standpoint. Hence, you may have to invest in repairs to your aluminum gutters.
  • Color can fade: Over time, it’s common for the color of the gutter to fade. This may require repainting to keep them looking great.

Have questions or need assistance installing your new gutters? Contact us today!

Can I Install Gutter Guards by Myself?

By | Homeowners

Man in gloves installing gutter guardTypically, it’s recommended that homeowners clean out their gutters in early spring and late fall. But many homes require more regular cleaning to ensure that the gutters are doing their job of safely distributing water runoff away from the home. And if you’re seemingly always cleaning out your gutters because debris constantly accumulates in them and causes problems, then gutter guards are something you should give some serious thought to.

Gutter guards install over your gutters and essentially work to ensure that any large debris (leaves, pine needles, etc.) is not accumulating in your gutters, while still allowing water to enter and adequately drain away from your home. But one of the questions that we receive often is whether or not installing gutter guards is a DIY job. We’ll get into some of the pros and cons of DIY gutter guard installation later in this piece. But first, we’re going to take a closer look at why gutter guards are a smart investment for many homeowners. Here’s a look:

Why Gutter Guards Are a Smart Investment

Like we hinted at in the intro, gutter guards are ideal for homes in areas with a lot of foliage. When leaves, needles and other debris fall from trees, it doesn’t necessarily always make it to your lawn or the pavement — but anywhere and everywhere. And the leaves, needles and debris that fall on your roofline are eventually going to make their way into your gutters. If too much builds up in your gutters, it’s going to clog your downspouts. This can lead to some significant issues, which may include:

  • Gutter overflow: When gutters can’t distribute water runoff properly, water will pour over them. This can lead to water pooling around your home’s foundation and potentially lead to foundation degradation or even home water damage on the lower levels of your property.
  • Gutter damage: When wet, leaves and debris represent a significant weight within your gutters. If this weight becomes too great, it could cause your gutters to begin pulling away from the roofline and require repair or replacement to the gutter system. This issue can be even more significant during the winter cold weather months when standing water has the potential to freeze and cause even more problems within the gutter system.

Additionally, properly installed gutter guards help eliminate regular cleaning of the gutters, which is often necessary for areas with heavy foliage. If you hire someone to clean your gutters, you can save money in the long term from installing gutter guards. And if you elect to clean your gutters yourself, you can save time and effort, and also reduce your chance of being injured when working at heights. Even if you have gutter guards, you’re still likely to have to clean your gutters out on occasion, but cleaning and maintenance is much less than if you didn’t.

Is Gutter Guard Installation a DIY Project? Pros and Cons

The biggest advantage to installing gutter guards yourself is the cost savings. If you’re confident that you can correctly install gutter guards, you’ll only be paying for the materials and not for the labor. For the average home that has about 200 feet of gutters, this represents a savings of about $1,000. However, depending on the type of gutter guard that’s being installed, the cost can be upwards of $2,000. Generally speaking, the more costly the labor to install gutter guards, the more complicated the installation.

However, there are several potential hazards associated with DIY installation of gutter guards. Here’s a look at what you need to beware of before making the decision to do it yourself.

It Can Be Dangerous

In order to install gutter guards, you’re going to have to be able to access the roof of your home. And depending on what kind of a home you have, this can be dangerous. If you have mobility issues, a steep roofline or just don’t do well at heights, this is a project you’ll likely want to leave to the professionals. If things were to go awry, you could end up seriously injured.

Correct Installation is Key

If you have some general handyman skills, you should be able to install most types of gutter guards without a problem. But keep in mind that some gutter guards are more difficult to install than others, so the difficulty of installation can vary based on the style that you select. Incorrect installation of gutter guards can essentially nullify the purpose of why you wanted them in the first place. You could also experience roof damage if the installation were to go wrong with certain types of gutter guards.

It’s Often More Convenient to Hire a Professional

Most people purchase gutter guards at the same time they’re having new gutters installed on their home. Noting this, it’s often much more convenient to just have the professionals who hang the gutters also install the gutter guards. Additionally, professional home improvement companies generally have access to better types of gutter guards versus the ones that you can buy over the counter at your local hardware store.

For more information on gutter guard installation, contact K-Guard today.

fascia and soffit

Fascia Board And Soffit Board Replacement

By | General

Soffits and fascia boards are important to your home for many reasons. One, they help make it look great and can truly help complement the overall decor of your home’s exterior. Two, they help enclose the home from the outside — keeping pests and any weather at bay. They can also help increase ventilation into your attic, which can help increase its energy efficiency. And three, in certain areas of your home, your gutters are installed onto the fascia boards, providing key support for this important system.

However, fascia and soffit boards have to be replaced from time to time. Replacement often comes after noticeable damage has been discovered. Another time when it makes sense to perform fascia and soffit board replacement is if you’re getting new gutters.

In this post, we’ll further discuss the importance of fascia and soffit boards, why they matter to gutter installation and more. Here’s a closer look:

Fascia Board, Soffit Build-Out: A Key Part of Gutter Installation

Like we noted in the opening, gutters install into the fascia boards on your home — so these boards have to be in good condition in order to support the weight of the gutters. Even if your fascia boards are in good condition, it can still make sense to have them replaced when you’re getting new gutters to match any new color or design scheme that you’re aiming for.

The soffits are installed underneath the rafter tails of your home. Depending on the current condition of your soffits, the ventilation in your home and any problems your existing soffits may be causing in your property, it often makes sense to have the soffits replaced and built out at the same time you’re having the fascia board work performed.

Cost of Soffit and Fascia Build Out

The cost of any home improvement project depends on a variety of factors, and soffit and fascia board build-outs are no exception. On average, it costs anywhere from $20 to $30 per linear foot of soffit installed, but costs can vary based on material. Fascia boards generally cost anywhere from $15 to $25 per linear foot that is installed. Again, the cost can vary based on material.

Traditionally, soffits and fascia boards are made from the likes of aluminum and wood. However, there is a range of material options that property owners can select from for these build-outs today. Some of the more popular options today include vinyl and UPVC.

When to Replace Soffit and Fascia Boards

So how do you know when to replace soffit and fascia boards? Like we said in the introduction, sometimes it makes sense based on any other significant projects you’re carrying out around the home.

For instance, if you’re getting new gutters, it might make sense to look at replacing at least the fascia boards to match the color or style of your new gutters. If you’re having new siding installed on your home, replacing the soffit and fascia boards is typically part of the service that’s included in such work.

But there are other situations where it makes sense to replace your soffits and fascia boards outside of the aforementioned situations. Here’s a look at the situations you should note:

  • If they incur damage: Mold, mildew and other stains can typically be easily cleaned off with a little bit of cleaning solution or elbow grease, but if you notice rusting or areas where the soffit is peeling away from the property or completely missing, repairs or replacement should become a priority.
  • If your soffits and/or fascia are made of wood, you’ll want to replace them if rot is noticeable.
  • If you have a pest infestation in your attic, it’s likely that the soffits and/or fascia were not installed correctly or have been damaged to the point where pests can invade.
  • If there’s mold growth in your attic, it’s a sign that your soffits likely aren’t doing a good enough job ventilating to the attic. While professional remediation is likely necessary, it’s also important to take the necessary measures to ensure the mold doesn’t come back. Replacing the fascia to improve attic ventilation can help.
  • Chipped or cracked paint is a sign of old fascia and soffit age. The older these building materials get, the more prone they are to fail.

Can I Replace Soffits or Fascia?

Often, it makes sense to let a professional handle replacement or new build-outs, simply because they’re often already at your home to replace the gutters or add new siding. Additionally, installing soffits or fascia incorrectly can lead to significant problems, such as home water damage, mold growth or a pest infestation. However, if you’re handy, don’t mind heights and have the proper materials, it is possible to carry out this work yourself.

For more information on fascia board and soffit board replacement, contact K-Guard today.

What Are Some Signs That You Have Clogged Gutters?

By | Gutter Maintenance

leaves resting on a roof and in gutterGutters play a key role in protecting the siding and foundation of your home. The gutters help to collect water as it falls from the roof and transports the water to a downspout, where it can be discarded away from your home. This keeps excess water away from the foundation and siding of your home. This can help to prevent soil erosion problems that can lead to sinking or shifting foundations, or problems associated with flooding in crawl spaces and basements. Keeping water away from the siding of your home helps to prevent rot and mold issues as well. While gutters are extremely important, they cannot do their job if they are clogged. Learning the key signs of a clogged gutter can help you to prevent that problem.

Water is Spilling Over the Edges of Your Gutters

The number one sign that your gutters are clogged is that water is spilling over the sides or edges of your gutters. The next time it is raining, step outside for a minute and look at your gutters. Do you notice water sloshing over the edges of the gutter and falling out? If so, your gutters are likely clogged. Clogs in the gutter system prevent water from flowing through the gutter channels as it should. When it rains, water builds up in the channel and has nowhere to go but over the edge.

Plants Are Growing in Your Gutters

Another common sign of clogged gutters is plants sprouting or growing in your gutters. You should not notice any type of growth peeking out from your gutters. However, if water is sitting in the trough, along with dirt and a single seed, one or more plants may begin to sprout. It is important to remove the growth quickly, as the root system can damage the gutter system, and the plant itself can obstruct water from properly flowing through the gutter system as it is designed to do.

Water is Not Coming Down the Downspout

One of the top misconceptions about clogged gutters is that if you do not notice water spilling over the edges of the gutter system, the gutters are not clogged. This is not true. Gutter systems can hold a lot of water, and in some cases, your gutters may be clogged, but there may not be enough water present to flow over the edges of the gutter. When it rains, step outside and watch the gutters. Does the rainwater actually come out the downspout? If you notice very little to no water coming out of the downspout, you may have a clog in the downspout or within your gutters.

Your Gutters Are Starting to Sag

One of the dangers associated with having clogged gutters is that the gutters can become so full of debris and water that the weight of these items starts to damage the gutters. Typically, before the seams of your gutters start to split or separate, you will notice that they start to sag from the weight of excess water and/or debris. This is a clear indication that your gutters are full and that they need to be cleaned. If you do not do so in a timely manner, the gutters may split at the seams, and then you will need to install new gutters.

Pests Are Hanging Out In or Around Your Gutters

One of the lesser-known signs that you may have clogged gutters is the appearance of pests by your gutters. You may notice the pests actually hanging out in the gutter, or see them hanging out on the edge of your roof. The types of pests may range from birds to small rodents and squirrels to insects. Clogged gutters are attractive to pests for a few reasons. First, clogged gutters may have small amounts of water in them that the pest can drink from or use to bathe in. Secondly, clogged gutters often have debris in them, such as leaves, sticks and mud. A pest can use those items to make a nest or shield themselves from predators. If you notice pests hanging out in or near your gutters, you may have clogged gutters.

Stain Marks Are Present On the Siding By Your Gutters

The final common sign that your gutters are clogged is stain marks on the siding underneath your gutters. If water is sitting in the gutters with debris, that water may become very dirty. As the water slowly seeps out of the gutters, it may start to stain the side of your home, leaving behind brown or black stains. Additionally, sitting water in a gutter channel can lead to rust issues. If the gutters rust, you may notice brown or red rust stains on the siding of your home. Rusted gutters should be replaced to ensure they can hold and transport water and to prevent staining on your home’s siding.

Gutters are a vital part of protecting your home, but traditional gutters need to be cleaned regularly to ensure they function properly. If you do not have the time to regularly clean your gutters, there is a solution that may help you. Installing gutter guards by K Guard is a great way to reduce the amount of debris that winds up in your gutters, in turn, reducing the frequency in which they need to be cleaned. Gutter guards cover a large portion of the gutter, allowing only water to seep into the gutters, and not items such as leaves and sticks. If you are ready to reduce the frequency in which you need to clean your gutters, reach out to us at K Guard to learn more.

10 Gutter and Downspout Runoff Drainage Tips

By | Gutter Maintenance

downspoutGutters play an irreplaceable role in maintaining your home’s excellent condition all year long. By diverting excess water away from your home, gutters work to protect a number of your home’s crucial structural elements, such as landscaping and hardscaping.

Gutters are instrumental in protecting your home’s foundation, preventing flooding and avoiding erosion. What is more, gutters have a positive impact on your home’s exterior, given their ability to reduce paint damage, stains, mildew and mold. Check out K-Guard’s top tips to maximize your gutters’ effectiveness and performance for years to come.

Prioritize Regular Inspections and Maintenance

One of the best ways to ensure that your home’s gutters are in good condition is to perform regular inspections and routine maintenance. Gutter care is a year-long commitment, but it is most pressing at the beginning of the spring and fall months.

During the spring, gutter checks primarily serve to check for damage after intense winter weather, such as snowstorms. Water is prone to freezing within the gutters, which can impair the gutters’ efficiency. During the fall, the priority during gutter checks is removing debris and leaves that may cause blockages.

Checking your gutters during these two times of the year will help ensure that your home is not subject to relentless water flow. That being said, homeowners can facilitate optimal gutter performance by watching out for obstructions of any kind throughout the year. Leaves, in particular, are known to clog gutters, ultimately impeding water flow, which can create more significant issues for your home.

Generally speaking, gutters last between 25-30 years with the proper maintenance. To make the most of your gutters’ lifespan, double-check their connections each year. Homeowners should also take the time to seal or repair any loose joints in the gutters.

Adapt Your Landscaping to Optimize Water Flow

Yet another way to ensure that your gutters function correctly is to adapt your home’s landscaping to ideal water flow and runoff patterns. Start by inspecting your property for any low spots that may be surrounding your home. Fill these low spots as quickly as possible in order to avoid unnecessary water accumulation.

On a larger scale, evaluate your property’s slope and grading. If your property’s grading or slope makes it easier for runoff to accumulate near your home, you may need to hire a professional excavator. Keep in mind that it’s best to keep water flowing away from your home whenever possible.

Homeowners can also take steps to reroute water flow so that it goes into a dry well or a storm drain. This is possible by installing a so-called sump pump, which takes water that’s accumulated in your basement and pumps it in another direction. A plumber can install a sump pump to direct water to a storm drain or dry well near your home.

Last but not least, homeowners can utilize a variety of water collection recipients, including rain barrels, rain gardens and cisterns. These solutions help limit the amount of water that is flowing toward your home, therefore helping you avoid potential long-term damage.

Install High-Quality Gutter Guards

In addition to these strategies to maximize gutter efficiency and optimize water flow, homeowners can also invest in gutter guards. As the name suggests, gutter guards are designed to facilitate water flow into gutters while eliminating outside debris, trash and pests.

By investing in gutter guards, homeowners can considerably prolong the life of their gutters and their home. This is because the longer that your gutters function efficiently, the longer they can protect your home from unwanted water flow and damage. These factors threaten homes’ foundations, exterior, basement flooding and much more.

With these factors in mind, gutter guards are an outstanding solution to the seasonal issues that negatively affect gutters each and every year. Homeowners have the option of different types of gutter guards, depending on their specific needs and preferences. A few options include metal screens, micromesh, sponge guards, reverse curve and slit guards. It’s best to know what kind of debris you are hoping to keep out of your gutters before choosing your gutter guards.

All things considered, gutter guards are a proactive way to extend the life of your gutters and your home. They effectively reduce the amount of maintenance needed on your home each year, ultimately saving you money every year.

Trust K-Guard for Durable, Efficient Gutter Solutions

Established over 25 years ago in Broomfield, Colorado, K-Guard is an established industry leader in gutter protection systems. K-Guard dealers are strategically located in 37 states, making superb gutter protection products widely available for homeowners nationwide. K-Guard prides itself on producing top-of-the-line gutter protection products that make homeowners’ lives easier and reduce the amount of gutter maintenance required annually.

With an unwavering commitment to quality and customer satisfaction, K-Guard continues to provide spectacular gutter solutions to customers across the United States. For more information about K-Guard’s exceptional offering, call (614) 964-4925 or fill out this quick contact form today.

 

White Gutters

Why Choose Seamless Gutters?  

By | Tips

 

Though your home’s gutters are likely one of its more taken-for-granted exterior features, this is an incredibly important system when it comes to protecting your home from water damage and your property’s foundation from degradation. As you likely know, gutters serve the role of distributing water runoff from your home’s roof safely away from your property. Gutters that leak or are clogged are likely to lead to water pooling in areas around your home’s foundation — and water does a great job of finding its way into the likes of basements and crawl spaces.

While gutters are important in preventing home damage, you might not know that there are different types of gutters you can select from. One popular type of gutter is seamless gutters. In this post, we’ll take a closer look at what seamless gutters are, how they differ from conventional gutters, their benefits and more. Here’s a closer look:

Seamless Gutters Explained

There are two main types of gutters: seamless gutters and sectional gutters. Sectional gutters are usually cut into 10 to 20-foot sections and connected during installation on the home. Seamless gutters, conversely, are all one piece. In other words, there are no connections along the gutters — just think of them as custom-made to fit your home. In fact, they’re usually either formed on-site or in a special prefabrication shop.

Though seamless gutters are often a bit more expensive than conventional sectional gutters (more on this later), property owners can realize ROI in several significant ways. We’ll discuss this as well as other benefits associated with seamless gutters in the next section.

Benefits of Seamless Gutters

As we hinted at in the previous section, there are a variety of benefits to selecting seamless gutters over the more conventional sectional gutters. Here’s a look at some of them:

Enhanced Strength, Rigidity

Seamless gutters consist of single pieces of gutters, which are essentially custom-made for your home. Because of this, and their aluminum or copper makeup, they offer enhanced strength and rigidity compared to conventional gutters. Most seamless gutters are made from aluminum, which offers a great strength-to-weight ratio and can last for up to 20 years before replacement is necessary. Copper gutters can even last upwards of 50 years.

For comparison’s sake, conventional steel gutters tend to last for as little as 10 to 12 years before replacement is necessary.

Reduced Chance of Leaks

One of the biggest benefits of selecting seamless gutters for your home is that the one-piece makeup significantly reduces the chance of leakage. Remember, the main purpose of your home’s gutters is to safely distribute rain and snowmelt away from the foundation of your property. With conventional gutters that are joined together in 10- to 20-foot sections, there’s a chance that these types of gutters will leak at the connections over time. When this occurs, gutters will need to be properly repaired or else water could pool around your home’s foundation, potentially leading to water intrusion and mold growth.

Wide Range of Color Options

Gutters these days are available in a wide range of color options, and seamless gutters are no exception. It’s easy to match seamless gutters with the trim of your home to ensure they complement the design of your home and enhance its curb appeal. If you don’t like the color palette that seamless gutters are available in, it’s easy to paint aluminum.

Ease of Maintenance

While we hit on this benefit to an extent earlier in this piece, it’s worth mentioning again: Seamless gutters are incredibly easy to maintain. Since their makeup consists of the minimum amount of connections possible, these gutters are far less prone to leaks compared to conventional gutter systems. As a result, you can have more confidence that your gutters are serving their role of safely moving water away from your property’s foundation.

Additionally, the durability of aluminum gutters ensures that they’re long-lasting. Aluminum is also a material that will not rust and is corrosion-resistant. Conventional steel gutters have a tendency to rust and corrode over time, and vinyl gutters can warp and become brittle.

Seamless Gutters Pros & Cons

Though seamless gutters have plenty of advantages, many of which we covered in the above section, there are also a few notable drawbacks that are worth considering as well. Here’s a look at some of the considerations that you should be weighing when it comes to selecting what type of gutters are right for your property:

  • Cost: Because they’re custom-made and involve a different fabrication process (and different materials) compared to conventional gutters, seamless gutters are often more expensive. Additionally, installing seamless gutters isn’t typically a DIY job that homeowners can carry out — it takes a professional to fabricate the gutters and install them to ensure a perfect fit.
  • ROI: It’s important to consider ROI when making your gutter selection. Though seamless aluminum or copper gutters are more expensive than conventional sectional gutters and the materials they’re made from, they also last longer, are more maintenance-friendly and do a better job of preventing household damage. It’s important to ask yourself whether or not paying a bit more upfront is worth these aforementioned benefits.

 

Contact K-Guard today for more information on seamless gutters and the advantages that they hold over conventional gutter systems.

Why Your Overflowing Gutter Is More Harmful Than It Seems

By | Gutter

At first glance, a gutter that has water flowing over the sides instead of through the downspout may not seem like a big deal. Sometimes, in a torrential downpour, overflow inevitable because the water is collecting in the gutters faster than it can get through the downspout.

Overflowing gutterIf you see overflowing water in your gutters on a consistent basis though, it’s probably time to identify the problem and enact a solution. After all, gutter systems are in place for a reason, and even though they may seem like a minor aspect of your whole home health, the amount of damage that can occur without proper drainage can be devastating.

Why Is My Gutter Overflowing?

It doesn’t take a home improvement professional to understand that the reason why water isn’t going out through a downspout is because there’s blockage. Probably 90 percent of gutter overflow is caused by leaves, whirlybirds, roofing granules, and other materials that create a roadblock to the drainage system.

It’s important to note that it’s not always debris that is causing your gutters to overflow. Gutters also need to have a slight pitch to them, roughly 1/2 inch for every 10 feet of length. Gutters that are leveled will overflow because the water isn’t forced anywhere, but it should also be noted that too much of a pitch isn’t good either. Not only are radically pitched gutters an eyesore, they’ll also force out water at a faster pace than the downspout can drain it, which also causes overflow.

Dangers of Overflowing Gutters on a Home’s Exterior

Some homeowners might think it’s not that big of a deal that their gutters are overflowing, because who cares if all the water doesn’t get into the drain, right? That sentiment is not true even one bit, because it’s where the water goes instead that can be very damaging.

Storms that bring rain also usually bring wind. The water that is overflowing over your gutters is then almost inevitably going to get blown into the most vulnerable spots on your exterior – around windows and doors.

Even before leaks around these areas start, the moisture exposure will start to rot the wood framing around the windows and doors, which is ultimately either going to lead to a costly replacement ($21,000 national average for the windows alone, according to a 2020 “Cost vs. Value” report published by Zonda) or air leaks that could drive up utility bills and cause early replacement of HVAC systems.

Even if there isn’t always wind blowing water toward windows and doors, soffit and fascia will almost always see some exposure. When soffit and fascia start to rot, there’s some risk of water trickling down interior walls, but you’ll almost assuredly see rodent and insect infestation.

Foundation and Basement Water Damage From Gutter Overflow

Believe it or not, the costliest damage from water flowing over your gutters isn’t necessarily in your windows, doors, or fascia – it’s to your foundation. When gutters are clean, pitched, and properly fastened, they collect water off the roof and disperse it safely away from the home, either out in the yard or the street.

When the rainwater doesn’t make it to the drain, it overflows all around the house, collecting near your foundation. When soil isn’t graded away from the house, that water will all run toward your house. Eventually the soil around your foundation will become soft and saturated, which will allow the concrete to shift and ultimately crack. Once those cracks form, it’s not long before all that water starts finding its way into your basement.

It’s pretty obvious how damaging water in the basement can be, especially in a finished space. Mold, mildew, bacteria, and even the potential for electrocution soon follow. That’s not even mentioning the costly foundation repairs that must be performed to prevent future floods.

Fixing Gutter Overflows

What can be so frustrating about the damages (and costs) that result from overflowing gutters is that they are so easily preventable. The #1 step a homeowner can do to prevent these issues is to simply clean the gutters. An annual cleaning in the spring should be the bare minimum, but it would greatly benefit your home to remove the leaves and other buildup before winter as well. Some people clean their gutters every three months based on their climate and the amount of foliage in the area.

Debris clogging isn’t the only issue that causes overflowing gutters, though. Gutters may need to have pitch adjusted from time to time, may need to be re-fastened/have fasteners reinstalled, or may require the damaged fascia that is the structural support replaced as well.

Perhaps the easiest way to prevent gutter overflow and also avoid the maintenance costs associated with having to hire a company to clean out the blockage is by installing gutter guards. These simple products attach overtop the gutters and allow water to enter while at the same time blocking leaves and debris from entering the gutter.

Gutter Overflow Summary

The good news is that the fixes for gutter overflows (in the early stages) are much more convenient and less costly compared to the damage that can result if left unchecked for years. Window replacement, foundation repairs, basement remodeling, siding replacement, etc. are much higher end projects than picking some leaves out of a downspout – something to consider.