Posted on: 5 March 2018Share
Seamless gutters can provide versatility, leak protection, and a stylish counterpoint to the aesthetic of your home's exterior. And you don't have to stop there; with a little planning and a couple of accessories, you can up the amount of weather protection they provide. Here are three add-ons you can use to maximize your seamless gutters' resistance to weather.
1. Gutter guards or screens
One of the risks of nasty storms is that lots of leaves can catch in your gutters and downspouts. When this happens, you may not even know you have a problem until your roof starts leaking. And if you do notice it, your options aren't much better: brave the sleet and wind to clear the gutter out, or start getting out buckets to catch the drips. Gutter guards can help keep leaves out of your gutters and downspouts so you'll be less likely to find yourself in this crisis situation.
2. Heat tape or cable
Finding yourself with a leaking roof in a sleet storm is no fun, but ice dam leaks in a blizzard may be even worse. Running heat tapes or cables along your gutter is a common solution; turning these on when the snow starts collecting on your roof can prevent the gutters from freezing up so that any melted snow that runs down to the gutter can escape to the ground.
Remember, using electrical heating with water can create a shock hazard, so be very careful if you decide to go this route. You can have the heat tape professionally installed as well, but either way be sure to use a high-quality product, operate it according to the directions, and stop using it if it becomes damaged or you notice anything odd (like an odd smell).
3. Extra heavy-duty fasteners
The more support your gutters have, the better they can hold up with gallons of water running through them (or piles of snow pushing down on them). They'll also be able to resist high winds better if they're better-fastened than usual. It's best to have the contractor use plenty of fasteners during installation, but you can always have more added after the fact if need be.
If the gutter fasteners are placed about three feet apart, you need to have more added. One fastener per 18 inches is a better density for climates with severe winters.
The type of hanger you use is also important. You'll want to choose the type that fastens to the fascia at multiple points (such as the bracket type) rather than a less secure one (such as the spike-and-ferrule type).
These three add-ons can help keep your gutter structurally sound and reduce the chances of gutter-related roof leaks. For more information, contact a company like D & M Exteriors.