Birds: Homeowners' Most Wanted Offenders
Our fine-feathered friends. Colorful, beak-faced creatures. Winged beings who soar across the sky and carry our dreams along with them.
Birds go by a lot of different nicknames. But to many homeowners, they’re classified as public enemy number one.
That’s because despite their beauty and majesty, birds tend to make themselves at home wherever they are. Often, that causes problems for a home which can eventually lead to costly repairs. And because they can fly almost anywhere, it’s impractical to try and keep them away (with one exception – more on that later).
Birds and Gutters
First, your home’s gutters are shaped in a way that can perfectly accommodate small or medium-sized birds. As a result, many species of birds try to build their nests inside the gutters themselves. Then when it rains, the roof runoff water cannot flow through to the downspouts because of the bulky nest blocking its path. Instead, this water flows over the sides of the gutters and onto the ground below, which can cause eroded landscaping, flooded basements or even buckling foundations over time.
Birds and Chimneys
Gutters aren’t the only parts of the home that are “conducive” to bird nesting. Larger birds sometimes build a big nest at the top of (or inside) a chimney – which may not be a problem until you want to use your fireplace. Then the embers from the fire can float upward and possibly ignite the twigs and sticks that form the nest, which can lead to a fire hazard. What’s even more dangerous is the nest will prevent carbon monoxide gas from escaping your home through the chimney, and if this gas builds up inside your home, it can be lethal to people inside.
Birds and Roofs
Even your home’s roof isn’t immune to the scourge of birds. First, if there are any holes in your roof or eaves, the birds can build a nest there just like they would your gutters or chimney, and they could even get inside your home. But there’s another aspect of birds that can cause roof issues: their fecal waste. Bird scat can carry dozens of different fungi and disease-causing bacteria, so if the droppings on your roof get washed off into your gutters, they could conceivably cause your pet (or even a member of your household) to become sick.
Keeping Those #$@%&! Birds Away
So what’s the best way to get rid of unwanted birds without resorting to cruel and unusual measures?
You can start by keeping your gutters, chimney, and roof clean and in good repair. The fewer materials and openings there are around your home, the less likely that birds will try to create a livable habitat. If birds are a recurring problem, don’t turn to poisons, they’re liable to wash into your yard and kill grass and plants or even harm pets or people.
There are also bird repellants that are safe for outdoor use; they work by emitting scents that birds don’t like. Traps and animal decoys may provide you with some relief. If you want to go high-tech, devices which emit high-frequency sound waves often bother the birds to the point where they will find somewhere else to call home.
Of Course, You Can Always…
When it comes to your gutters, there is one foolproof solution to keeping them bird-free: the Gutter Helmet gutter protection system. This gutter cover attaches over the mouth of your existing gutters, thereby preventing birds (as well as leaves and other debris) from getting inside. Instead, runoff water flows over the gutter cover and into an opening, where it can move safely to your downspouts. Call Harry Helmet today at 1-888-5-HELMET or fill out their online form to see about getting Gutter Helmet for your home.
Written by Del Thebaud