A homeowner's chores can seem to never end, but protecting your home from winter's storms is an important task you don't want to skip. Here are some tips to check, maintain, and complete repairs to your roof's drainage system to get it ready for fall.
Clean and Repair Rain Gutters
With the arrival of fall will come an abundance of leaves flying through the air in your neighborhood. If you have any number of trees located around your home, there is a good chance leaves will fall on your roof and become lodged inside your gutters. For this reason, it is important to get up on your roof before winter to clean out your gutters. This is a good opportunity to remove any buildup of gutter debris from the summer and to check for any leaks in your gutters. A leaking or sagging gutter can cause water to fall on the soil around your home's foundation and lead to water saturation in the soil, which can cause leaks through your basement walls.
As you safely get upon your roof, you can use a pressure washer or your garden hose with a jet-sprayer attachment to clean out the debris that has settled inside the gutters. Wearing gloves, you can also clear out debris with your hands. Run water down your roof and watch how it flows in the gutters to determine where any leaks are situated. Leaks can occur in the connectors and corners of the gutters.
Look down the length of each section of gutter to make sure they are not sagging to allow improper water runoff. If you discover any leaks or damage to your gutters, you can call a gutter professional to repair or replace the damaged areas.
Maintain Roof Drainage
The roof drainage on your home consists of the roof, gutters, and downspouts that deliver water off and away from your home. After cleaning and repairing your gutters and any damage to them, you can move on to inspect the entire drainage system to make sure it is working properly. A roof drainage system that does not function as it should can result in moisture leaks into your home through your roof and foundation.
It is a good idea to check the drainage and functioning of your downspout and their connections onto the gutters. Make sure these areas are not leaking or clogged with debris. You can clear a clog in a downspout by spraying your garden hose into it, or you can use a plumber's snake to dislodge a stubborn clog. The downspouts should not allow water to flow directly onto the soil around your foundation. This can cause the soil to erode away and water to leak into your basement.
To prevent moisture problems in your basement, at the minimum you should have a concrete or other durable material splash plate beneath the downspout. A better option is to install a downspout diverter to move water flowing from your roof to a location away from your home. It is recommended to install a downspout diverter that will deliver water at least five feet away from your home. You can also grade the soil around your home to slope away from your home. This further protects your home from water intrusion, especially from any water that falls upon the soil around the foundation.
Update Downspout Diverter
There are many types of diverters you can install to enable this process. You can install an underground drainage tube, or above-ground diverters made of sturdy plastic or a roll-up plastic for the diverter to fold up when it is not being used. Many attach right onto your downspout, and other will need installation in the landscaping. Choose one that will fit your needs and most effeciently protect your home from foundation water problems.
Click here to continue reading more about rain gutters.