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Gutter Cleaning: A Great Way to Break (or Prevent) the Ice

Now that Old Man Winter has arrived in your neighborhood, you need to focus on preparing your home for cold weather. Usually, this means wrapping exterior pipes, sealing gaps and openings, and getting your furnace checked. Similarly, you don’t have to worry about doing some of the home maintenance chores that are necessary in spring and summer, such as mowing the lawn, planting and watering flower beds, and undertaking major home renovations.

Don’t Forget Winter Gutter Cleaning

However, one task that cannot be ignored when the mercury drops is gutter cleaning. Even though you probably won’t have the problems with heavy rains in wintertime, there’s still the issue of snow, sleet, and ice. When this precipitation falls into your gutters, it’s designed to flow through to your downspouts when it melts. But if leaves, pine needles, and twigs are present in your gutters, the water is more likely to adhere to this debris and freeze. This in turn can facilitate ice formation and impede runoff water from reaching its destination, which can lead to many of the same problems that occur during heavy rain events when water spills over the sides of gutters.

Gutter Cleaning Prevents Ice Formation

Taken to the extreme, standing water in gutters can freeze during colder temperatures and form substantial ice blocks inside your gutters. In addition to obstructing water flow, these heavy blocks can put additional strain on your gutters themselves, possibly causing buckling, denting, or seam separations. And let’s face it, it’s much easier to clean your gutters during the winter than to break up solid ice that forms within them— or to deal with repairing them altogether.

Help Avoid Ice Dams Through Gutter Cleaning

Neglecting gutter cleaning in the winter can also contribute to another major problem: ice dams. These form when the melted snow refreezes at the roofline when temperatures drop (usually at night). After a while, the runoff water cannot penetrate the ice dam, so it finds other places to go, like into your attic, walls, and ceilings. Obviously, this can result in a host of other moisture and leakage problems that no homeowner wants to deal with. While dirty gutters aren’t the direct cause of most ice dams, they can certainly contribute to their formation if the gutters are clogged with debris.

Another option is to have a gutter protection system installed. Gutter Helmet thoroughly covers your gutters so that solid debris is repelled onto the ground, while runoff water flows through a slit and into your gutters like it is supposed to. In addition, a combination gutter cover/heating product called Helmet Heat can provide all of the benefits of self-regulating heating cables in an all-in-one product.

So as you bundle up this winter, don’t forget to keep your gutters free of debris. Because gutter cleaning is not just a warm weather endeavor.

Written by Chris Martin

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I recently had the Gutter Helmet by Harry Helmet installed on my house. It not only looks amazing, but the guys arrived on time, were professional and efficiently got the job done. I am very satisfied with Gutter Helmet's attention to detail and fulfilling their work as promised. I will definitely tell my neighbors about the Gutter Helmet.
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I have had Gutter Helmets for 20 years. In all that time I've never had a problem until recently a bird's nest found its way into one of my gutters. The installer who came to replace the product was the same installer from 20 years earlier. Now that's impressive. Everyone at Gutter Helmet inclusive of the office staff were professional and a pleasure to work with.
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Gutter Helmet by Harry Helmet just replaced our roof and we could not be more satisfied. The crew showed up early, worked all day and stayed late, were professional and caring regarding the project and the surrounding impact it had on our property and home. They completed the roof quickly and it looks simply amazing!
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VERY happy with our entire experience adding Gutter Helmet by Harry Helmet to our house. Installing this was a great value for us. The gutters are working perfectly in heavy downpours and with year-long leaves and debris coming down from our river birches. Terrific customer service and a first class product.
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We needed our roof repaired due to wind damage. After several quotes, Gutter Helmet was the only company that went into our attic to look and see if more damage had occurred. If it wasn't for them taking the extra time to look at everything, we would have had rotting wood under our new roof. They were very professional and gave a fair quote.
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We just had Gutter Helmet installed on our gutters and couldn't be happier. They provided us with useful information about Gutter Helmet and cleaned up everything, leaving no mess behind. We definitely recommend Gutter Helmet to anyone considering this product.
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