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Do I Need Gutters?

Gutter And DownspoutFor homeowners that don’t have them, during many re-roofs we hear the question, “Do I need gutters?” As with many questions, the correct answer is that ‘it depends.’ However more often than not the answer is typically yes and an appropriate gutter system is recommended. Bottom line, gutters are an extension of the roofing system whose primary job is to shed water away from the home. The more precipitation an area gets, the more important gutters become.

2 Reasons Why Gutters May NOT Be Necessary

There are a few times when gutters are an unnecessary addition to the home. Two primary reasons are either:
  1. The home is located in a dry, arid climate that receives little rain or...
  2. The roof overhangs far enough to shed water a safe distance away from the foundation.

10 Reasons Why You Need Gutters

In most cases however, gutter systems play a number of vital roles in protecting the home and increasing the homeowner’s enjoyment of the property. The following are ten reasons you may need gutters:
  1. Gutters Help Prevent Water Intrusion in the Basement: The majority of all water problems in the basements are due improper water shedding. Poor planning or the natural landscape of a location can slope toward the home and route hundreds of gallons of water toward the foundation. Overtime this can lead to cracks, leaks, flooding, and excess moisture resulting in expensive water, mold and mildew damage.
  2. Gutters Protect Exterior Walls: Water dripping off the edge of the roof can splash dirt and moisture back up onto the exterior walls of the home and can lead to staining, rotting or premature weathering.
  3. Gutters Prevent Soil Erosion: Properly routing excess water away from the home and reducing the energy created by falling water can prevent the erosion of the foundation backfill and surrounding soil.
  4. Gutters Protect Landscaping: Excessive water channeled to landscaping around the home can kill shrubs, grass and other plants.
  5. Gutters Protect Fascia: Properly installed gutters with the correct flashing, or apron, will stop water from running over the lip of the roof and sneaking back up under the roof or fascia which can cause damage.
  6. Gutters Protect Decks & Railings: The drip-line created by a roof without gutters can prematurely weather deck boards and railings.
  7. Gutters Protect Driveways, Concrete Slabs and Walkways: Not only can drip-lines from the roof stain and wear asphalt or concrete used around the home, excessive water can wash out the fill below driveways, slabs and sidewalks causing them to sink and crack.
  8. Gutters Provide Winter Safety: Melting snow can freeze on sidewalks and driveways creating an icy hazard. In addition, the salts or other chemicals used to melt ice can reduce the lifespan of the concrete or asphalt being treated.
  9. Gutters Help Keep You Dry: The drip-line created by a roof without gutters can create a sheet of water during rainstorms making it impossible to enter or leave the home without getting drenched.
  10. Gutters Help Collect Rainwater For Irrigation: It is becoming increasingly popular in many regions to collect rainwater from the roof for use as irrigation on lawns and gardens lowering utility bills for those who use them.