Gutter Issues in the Summer

summer gutter issues

You may not think that gutter issues develop in the summer, but they do.  If you’ve seen some of our recent posts about the recent drought or West Nile Virus 2012, you’ll already be ahead of the game.

Common Gutter Issues in the Summer

Trees prune themselves of dead twigs and branches in the summer and that may not be something on your radar.

Summer seems to bring much more active weather fronts.  When a front changes or if a thunderstorm blows through (we know, lots of you are trying to remember what this even is), trees get frantically whipped about when the wind from the initial part of the front or storm.

Those strong winds break off dead twigs, branches and even limbs—anything too weak to last getting battered by other, stronger branches.  You’ll often see more twigs and branches in your yard or on your roof now than at other times of the year.

When the debris lands on your roof, it makes its way down to your gutter.  Once it’s there, it’ll sit exactly where it lands in the trough.  It will act as a dam, naturally trapping debris that could have followed rainwater towards the downspout.

Storm Gutter Issues

Summer thunderstorms often bring heavy bursts of rain that can affect your gutters.  If you live in a new home, this may be the first instance where you’ll find if your gutter is sufficient to handle water off of a section of your roof.    Many newer homes have very steep roofs with very little gutter servicing gutters as many roof lines converge at a corner.  Here is a chart of the water your gutter can handle with 1 inch of rain per hour:

Summer Gutter Guard Issues

Ouch! Summer gutter issues can lead to overflowing gutters

5 inch half round:                     2,500 square feet

6 inch half round:                     3,840 square feet

5 inch K-Style:                           5,520 square feet

6 inch K-Style:                           7,960 square feet

Have any valleys on your roof?  A valley is where two sections of roof from different directions meet.  Water builds up in valleys and can create its own set of gutter issues.  Give rain speed, volume and a natural path and you’ll often see over shoot in a heavy thunderstorm.  Other architectural features that can lead to over shoot are at gutters under dormers, or if a valley exists up the roof over a straight gutter run.

Hail Gutter Issues

In certain parts of the country, hail can cause gutter issues.  Your roof and gutters can be severely damaged by large hailstones, particularly when they’re carried on the wind and hit your home at an angle, rather than straight from the sky.  We’ve written about hail storms and gutters in earlier posts.

Pet Gutter Issues

This one has to get its own post, which you should keep an eye out for.   Gutter issues can be very bad for your dogs, cats and any other pet that plays in your yard.

One way to stop summer gutter issues is with a gutter guard.  Key to choosing a gutter guard is if it is completely enclosed or not.  Any system that you can see an opening in will let in debris which typically will stay trapped under the cover.   Pitching the gutter guard with the angle of the roof also means it will create less maintenance for you going forward, and MasterShield has a unique and patented way of handling water once you install the system this way, a feature other gutter guards don’t have.

Micro filtration systems like MasterShield are completely enclosed, so they’ll keep out debris, won’t become breeding grounds for mosquitoes, birds or bees, and can even bounce back in place after getting hit by branches or medium sized hail.

Now here’s an honest assessment of what we, and all other gutter guards, don’t do well: handle all the water in valleys during summer thunderstorms.  There are ways of making MasterShield perform better than other gutter guards, and your local dealer will assess the situation and offer you some options.  Our philosophy is to be as upfront as possible about these locations since they can be troublesome on occasion.  Most homeowners weight the infrequent gutter issues at these spots against year round protection and make the decision that not cleaning their gutters outweighs the havoc Mother Nature can send their way.