How to Prevent Ice in Your Gutters
Iced gutters are heavy, dangerous, and completely preventable. Even in Michigan’s rough winter weather, you can keep your gutters clear of ice. Check out these tips to prevent ice in your gutters, courtesy of Sargent Gutters & Siding.
Clean Your Gutters at the End of Fall
Clogs are the primary cause of ice in gutters. Debris left in the gutters traps water in the winter. That water freezes and turns to ice.
We recommend cleaning your gutters at least twice yearly, at the beginning and end of autumn. The first cleaning removes debris that accumulates throughout the year. The second cleaning gets rid of fall leaves before winter. Routine cleaning can extend the life of your gutters and prevent ice buildup. Consider incorporating this into your yearly home maintenance plans.
Learn more: How Often Should Gutters Be Cleaned?
Make Sure Your Attic Is Sufficiently Insulated
Attic insulation acts as a barrier between indoor and outdoor temperatures. If the frozen snow on your roof melts because of hot interior temperatures, the snow may melt and re-freeze at the base of the roof line. This leads to ice dams, which may include ice in your gutters.
Consider upgrading to high-efficiency insulation if your insulation is old, worn, or insufficient for today’s building codes. You can prevent gutter ice and reduce your energy bills at the same time.
Use Gutter Guards to Keep Debris out of the Gutters
We emphasized the importance of gutter cleaning above. Gutter guards make this process easier. The guards block leaves and twigs from falling into the gutters. Water can still flow through the mesh, but larger materials stay above the guttering. The leaves blow away in the wind, and your gutters stay clear of clogs.
Contact Sargent Gutters & Siding if you’d like gutter guards for your existing gutter layout.
Check Your Gutter Slope or Watch the Water Flow
Monitor your gutters during the rainy months. Does water flow well through the downspouts, or does it pool in certain areas? Do you notice water pouring out of the top of your gutters?
The goal here is to verify that your gutters are appropriately sloped. Gutters should be slightly angled to encourage water to flow into the downspouts. If your gutters are not angled correctly, you may end up with a pool of water that turns into a block of ice in the winter.
Carefully Rake Your Roof When It Snows
A roof rake is a helpful tool for removing snow on your roof. Snow is heavier than you may realize, so please proceed with caution. Follow roof raking safety protocols to protect yourself and your property while you rake. This process will minimize the volume of melting snow that flows into your gutters, thus preventing ice formation.
DON’T Salt Your Gutters for Ice Prevention
Salt ice is a sufficient deicer for driveways and sidewalks, but it is not meant for gutters. Salt can corrode the gutters and eat away at your downspouts. The salt may build up at the bottom of your drains if melting snow does not sufficiently wash it away. This could damage your concrete foundation and lead to costly repairs.
All you need to keep ice out of your gutters is routine cleaning and upkeep. Sargent Gutters & Siding offers comprehensive gutter solutions, including seamless gutter installation, 6″ gutter upgrades, and professional gutter cleaning.