Downspouts 101

Gutter systems, no matter which system you choose, have relatively the same basic parts: the actual gutter, downspout, elbows, end cap, etc. Each part plays an integral role in draining rain and ice melt away from your home.  One of the most important parts to a gutter system is the downspout. Do you know exactly how they work and what role they play in your gutter system? Do you know how to properly clean and maintain them so they effectively drain water away from your home?  If you answered “no” to any of the questions above, don’t worry! We’re here

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How to Deal with and Prevent Ice Dams

While winter weather can create some beautiful scenery, it can also cause extensive and costly damage to your home, especially your gutters, if you’re not prepared. Sleet, ice storms and snow are some of the many different types of extreme winter weather conditions that we experience here in the Heartland. What’s one of the worst winter weather culprits that causes damage to your gutters? Ice dams. What are Ice Dams? Ice dams are thick pieces of ice that collect around the edges of sloped roofs. They form when heat produced from inside a house melts the accumulated snow on a

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How Do I Keep My Gutters from Being Damaged by Snow?

Winter Has Its Gutter Challenges In the colder months, it’s not only harder to clean and maintain gutter systems but also more dangerous. Chipping ice dams from roofs might cause eye and face damage. Ladder rungs can ice up and lead to serious falls. Same for cleaning your roof of snow after a recent storm. Furthermore, there’s no stopping snow accumulation in your gutters if storms come one after another. In those situations, the weight increase and development of blockages could bring a gutter system down. In turn, damage will be inflicted on your roof, siding, soffit, and fascia. Keeping

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How Do I Keep My Gutters from Freezing in the Winter?

Today we’re going to talk about gutter protection during the winter. Whether it’s on the way or already here, the months of colder temperatures can do more damage to your gutters than in any other season. The reason? It’s the period of time when all of the elements come together. For instance: Heavy snows accumulate in the gutters to increase the weight on the hangers Strong winds pound against the system to further loosen screws and other fasteners Fluctuations in sunlight and temperatures cause a thaw-freeze process Ice dams are created due to accumulated precipitation and debris that remain in

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What Are Dormers and Do They Need Gutters?

Today’s blog is about dormers. Dormers are a way to increase light on upper floors, provide extra headroom, increase living space, or all three. Dormers aren’t normally part of modern home construction. However, they were a way to add natural light or create additional space in existing homes.  Types of Dormers There are several types of dormers and the best way to see them is to take a drive through an older neighborhood populated with small to mid-sized homes.  The most common dormer is the gable. These feature a gabled roof that helps shed water away from its window. In

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Do I Need to Add Another Downspout to My Gutters?

In today’s blog we’re going to talk about a very important piece in any gutter system:  the downspout. The downspout’s purpose The downspout’s job is simple: it properly channels water from the roofline and gutters away from a home’s exterior. This is either through a splash block or an extension that leads it into the street or garden. Without it, the water pools around your home’s foundation which can damage both the outside and inside. However, the downspout’s job can get complicated. For instance, it won’t deliver runoff to the proper locations if the gutters get clogged. Furthermore, if the

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How Whirlybirds, Acorns, and Other Seeds Germinate in Your Gardens and Gutters

One of the semi-annual tasks you must perform as a homeowner is the dreadful ritual of gutter cleaning.  When you climb the ladder to examine the state of the gutter channels and downspouts, you’ll probably find a few things. Most likely, a collection of brown muck that’s a combination of dust, pollen, and dirt.  You also might find remnants of a bird’s nest from a nearby tree. In addition to these and depending on the season, you’ll find plenty of flat items that look like helicopter blades as well as acorns never collected by the local squirrels. In fact, if

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Don’t throw away those gutters! They can be used for gardening

In the ongoing struggle to reduce our global footprint, we have been asked to reduce the amount of waste we add to landfills. Hence, the reason we recycle our plastics and glass. Some take it a step further with composting or irrigating their gardens via a water barrel.  Repurpose for the Planet Then there’s the act of repurposing broken or outdated items. When you look at the non-perishable items you discard, many of these can be repurposed. Some of them go to organizations like the Goodwill or a Habitat ReStore. Others are placed in second-hand or consignment stores. And those

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What is Roof Pitch and What Effect Does it Have on my Home’s Exterior?

What is roof pitch? In its basic definition, roof pitch – also known as its slope –  is the number of inches your roof rises for every foot of depth. As an example, a 6/12pitch represents a rise of six inches for every foot inward toward its peak, also known as its ridge. The importance of roof pitch To you, the roof’s pitch may not be critical. As long as it has some sort of angle it will distribute precipitation to the gutters. In turn, it removes it from the roofline via downspouts. However, this isn’t the case. If the

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Gutter Cleaning Tips and Tricks

If you have open gutters or a gutter system other than K-Guard Leaf Free Gutters, you might need some helpful tips and tricks to make cleaning them as painless and safe as possible – for you and your home. Tip 1: Clean during calm weather: Inclement conditions will make you rush through gutter maintenance which may cause you to miss something. Try to take care of everything in calm conditions. If it’s going to be hot, work on the gutters in the early morning or late in the day. Cold day? Work on the gutters during the sunniest and warmest

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