Are Your Gutters a Fire Hazard?

| 4 September 2018

It is important to take fire prevention measures around your home. Some common precautions include trimming tree limbs that hang over your home, removing dried yard waste and cut grass, and cutting back any shrubs that are blocking your air conditioning unit.

Gutter cleaning to prevent fire

What many homeowners forget to do is clean their gutters. This step should be included in everyone’s fire prevention checklist. Dried debris like leaves and twigs can easily become a fire hazard. They not only make your house look messy, but are an easy way for a spark to catch and can quickly turn into a house fire. If your roof is also covered in dried debris, the fire can quickly catch on and spread even faster. A spark from things like wildfires, barbeque grills, backyard fire pits, or a neighbor’s house fire can land in your gutter and can immediately become disastrous.

Houses can be made fire resistant, but they are not fireproof. Many homeowners believe that if their home exterior is brick and use shingles that are fire resistant material, then the home cannot catch fire from the outside. Although the materials are fire resistant, this does not mean that your home is fireproof. There are only a few materials that are fire resistant, but this does not completely protect your home from fire. Your gutter is attached to your home’s roofline and roofing system, which is partly constructed of wood. If a spark or ember from a forest or house fire lands on your gutters and there is dried debris in there, it is not unlikely for your home to catch fire. Because your roofing system is constructed of wood, the fire can quickly spread throughout your home.

Clogged gutters are not only a fire hazard in the summer, but can also be dangerous in the fall and winter as well. Fall is the season when your gutters are most likely to be filled with dried leaves and debris. It is also the season where your gutters should be cleared out in preparation for the rainy and snowy seasons ahead. If the gutters and downspout system are clogged and rainwater doesn’t flow properly, you can easily rack up costly repairs due to rainwater damage or freezing.

It Is Simple to Clean Your Gutters

Cleaning your gutters is not as hard as one would think; all you need is a blower, a garden hose, a ladder, and some rubber-soled shoes. Make sure that you do this carefully in order to prevent injuries or damages.

You should clean your roof and gutters several times a year to prevent dried debris from piling up. Start by using the blower to blow any dried debris off your roof. Anything that is loose will come right off. You can then use your hose to take off anything that might be stuck on. To prevent the risk of damaging your shingles, ensure that you don’t use too much pressure with the hose. It is inevitable that some of the debris will end up in your gutters as you are cleaning your roof. A popular method to avoid the mess in the gutters is a gutter protection system. Aluminum covers are put over your gutters and will prevent debris from building up at all while you are cleaning off your roof. If you don’t have a gutter protection system, then the easiest way to clean your gutters is by hand. Although the process is not fun, it is necessary. To make the task easier, invest in a gutter scoop. It is an excellent tool which can be purchased at most hardware stores. The plastic scooping tool is unique as it has a very thin edge at the front of the scoop and forms itself to the bottom of the gutter trough, ensuring you get even the toughest debris in any size gutter system. Stay away from metal scoops as it can scratch and damage your gutter system and introduce areas to rust. If you are someone who doesn’t want to clean the debris out of your gutters several times a year, then it might be beneficial to invest in some aluminum gutter covers. You won’t have to waste valuable time cleaning your gutters frequently or pay someone else to do it for you.

Your home is an investment where you and your loved ones live. You not only want to protect your family, but you also want to protect your investment that you worked so hard for. Taking the time to clean your gutters or taking preventative measures is a small sacrifice compared to what could happen if you let debris build up. You’ll also feel at ease knowing that your home and loved ones are safe.

If you would like to learn more about gutter protection systems and installation, then contact Landmark Home Solutions at 1-866-412-6220 or contact us here at our website.

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