Protect Your Gutters This Winter: What to Do and Why

What will winter weather do to your gutter system? Is it protected from ice damage? Can it survive ice damage? How will you protect your gutters this winter?

As you anticipate the rough winter ahead, make sure your home is fully and adequately prepared to handle winter weather. Gutter ice protection is vital to a safe and happy home.

The Ice Impact: How Ice Can Damage Your Gutter Systems

Ice Causes Too Much Pressure on Your Gutters
Heavy ice can add undue weight to your gutters. As ice continues to build-up on and around your gutters and roof, your gutters will have more and more weight to bear and an increased likelihood of ice damage. Eventually, the buildup can lead to collapsed gutters and ineffective gutter protection.

 

Ice Leads to Downspout Blockage
With each new series of precipitation — and the freeze that often follows — your downspouts will collect more ice. Downspouts are designed to carry water away from your home. But that’s impossible when those downspouts are clogged with ice. These blockages cause backup and can damage your gutter system, sometimes beyond repair.

 

Ice Leads to Facia and Roof Decking Damage
As ice builds inside open gutters, it grows under the drip edge (the metal that goes over the back of a gutter to prevent water from getting behind the gutter). This growth can get behind the metal and expand into your fascia and roof decking. Over time this will rot out the wood and without seeing it or correcting it, this can destroy the edge of your home.

 

Icicles: Not Always Pretty
Ice damage and buildup can lead to icicles. While icicles create that “winter wonderland” photo opportunity many of us love, they’re more harm than help when it comes to your gutters. Icicles can hang off your gutter system, pulling gutters away from your home. Your gutter protection shouldn’t lead to home damage, but icicles can do just that if left unchecked.

 

Falling Branches
As trees gather ice buildup due to winter weather, they can fall on your home and gutter systems. This can lead to not only home and gutter damage, but also cracked siding, broken windows, or severe damage to your roof.

 

Ice Dams
As your gutters and downspouts continue to become blocked throughout the winter, ice dams will form. Ice dams are large slabs of ice that freeze along the roofline. As these slabs of ice start to melt, water can seep in under the roofline which can cause peeling shingles. Ice dams are also likely to appear in gutter systems.

 

Water Damage
The winter weather won’t be around forever! As things thaw, icicles and ice dams will melt into water, opening you up to damage on your siding, roof, and most importantly, your gutters. But here’s the good news: you can protect yourself from all of these potential harms this winter season.

How to Prevent Ice Damage

Clean Your Gutters
First and foremost, do the prep work. While you still can enjoy a few cool fall days, clean your gutters. Fully remove clogs and clean all parts of your gutter protection system. Do the work to ensure your gutters and downspouts, as well as the ground near your downspouts, are free of debris and clogs (or hire a professional).

 

Remove Hanging Limbs
While you’re up on your ladder cleaning your gutters, remove any overhanging limbs. Any tree limbs that have started to grow over your roof should be removed because the weight of ice can cause them to fall and damage your roof. You may need to call a professional tree trimmer for those tricky limbs. But it’s work that’s well worth it, because clearing these limbs ahead of the winter storm season can prevent them from falling onto your roof as they collect ice.

 

Consider Heating Devices for Your Gutters
While you want to keep your roof cold, you want to keep your gutter protection warm. There are heating devices that you can install in your gutter system. These can be set to a temperature that will keep the flow of water going and eliminate ice damage and ice buildup.

 

Switch to K-Guard
It’s true that all these strategies can help protect your gutters this winter from ice damage and winter weather. But the only way that you can protect your home — with ZERO maintenance and ZERO upkeep — is replacing your gutter system with the K-Guard Leaf Free Gutter System for K-Guard.

In contrast to gutter brushes, gutter filtering foam, gutter screens, and other methods, our system is a step above the rest because it comes with a no-clog and maintenance-free guarantee. This means that once you’ve had us install your system, you never have to worry about maintaining your gutters again. And that’s our promise.

How can we make this promise? Our system is built with high-strength hangers and oversized gutters that can hold 40% more water than any other system. Our gutter protection system includes a gutter protector (our hood) that fully interlocks with other parts of the system for a seamless design.

 

There is one thing we know: winter is on its way. Take steps now to protect your gutters from winter before damage takes place. Contact K-Guard for your free in-home estimate and enjoy this winter from the inside of your home.