At Alamance Insulation and Gutters, we want you to feel safe, sound, and warm in your home this holiday season. Many times, people don’t realize that snow can badly damage gutters. Depending on where you live, you may see a little snow this winter, or you may see a lot. Regardless, it’s best to prepare for the worst – don’t let your gutters get damaged from the snow.

Knowing how to prevent gutter damage from snow during the winter season can be a major asset to homeowners wherever it snows. This type of harsh weather makes it easy for gutter damage to occur due to snow and ice buildup. The weight from the buildup can damage the gutter or cause it to break and fall from the roof. Similarly, ice dams may form and result in damage to the roof and gutters. Let’s take a closer look at some of the ways the professionals can prevent gutter damage from snow.

What is an Ice Dam?

An ice dam is a ridge or block of ice that forms at the lower end of the roof (aka the eave) and causes a back-up of water from melting snow. Poor attic insulation and insufficient air circulation is the most common reason for the formation of ice dams. When heat escapes from the attic and melts the snow on the roof, the water should drain down the gutter.

But the water refreezes, forms icicles, and stops drainage. Ice dams can tear shingles, cause gutters to come loose, or damage the eaves, ceiling or walls. These damages and expensive repairs can be avoided with the following tips on how to prevent gutter damage from snow.

Inspect Your Gutters

Gutters should be inspected and cleaned SEVERAL times a year to ensure they function properly and are free from debris or anything else that can interfere with drainage. While standing on the ground, you can walk around your house to visually inspect the gutters and make sure they are securely attached to the house. Also inspect for leaks and for any gaps between the gutter and fascia. The presence of any of these problems creates a potential risk for gutter damage from ice and snow during the harsh winter weather. At Alamance Insulation and Gutters, we’re always happy to inspect your gutters for you.

Clean Your Gutters Ahead of Winter

Clogged gutters can create the perfect opportunity for ice damming. However, you can take a pre-emptive strike against gutter damage from snow and ice by clearing and cleaning the gutter system before winter begins.

Make sure your cleaning professionals pay special attention to the gutters, downspouts, elbows, roof valleys, eaves and fascias.  Clearing away trapped debris such as fallen leaves or pieces of broken branches allows for the free flow of water from melted snow and ice to drain into the gutter and down the leaders (aka downspouts).

But wait! There’s more. Stay tuned for our next blog post about what else you can do to prepare your gutters for snow.