Posted on: 16 August 2016
When rainwater flows next to a home's foundation, it increases hydrostatic pressure around this area. With time, this increase in hydrostatic pressure not only encourages crack formation, but also leads to basement flooding. Both of these things usually play a significant role when it comes to compromising the integrity of a home's foundation. They are therefore things that you should prevent if you want to protect your home from foundation damage.
The gutter system is usually effective in preventing foundation damage mainly because it guides rainwater away from the foundation of a home. As a result, it helps to limit hydrostatic pressure buildup and lowers the risks of foundation damage. However, this works only when the gutter system is in good shape. The following are gutter maintenance tips that will come in handy in helping you to keep your foundation damage-free.
Pay attention to the hangers
A gutter's hangers usually hold it in place. They also come in handy in helping to ensure that the gutter system has a sufficient slope to ensure the smooth flow of water. Any hanger problems are therefore likely to reduce the effectiveness with which the gutter system directs water away from your home's foundation. This will then expose it to the devastating effects of increased hydrostatic pressure.
Since most hanger problems usually cause drooping gutters, start by looking for drooping sections in your gutter system, and then check for worn-out or overstretched hangers around these areas. Replace these hangers to restore the water-holding capacity of your gutter system. You should also consider increasing the number of hangers in these sections, since fewer-than-necessary hangers are also a common cause of drooping gutters.
Regularly clean your gutters
When leaves and other types of debris are left to accumulate in the gutter system, they tend to clog downspouts. The accumulation of these unwanted materials on the gutters also increases the weight that the hangers have to bear. This increases the strain on the hangers, something that then leads to premature gutter drooping that then causes water foundation spills. There is also the fact that these materials occupy space in the gutter system, which reduces the amount of water that the gutter system can handle at any given time. This then increases the risks of water dripping onto a home's foundation.
Removing leaves and other accumulated deposits by using a plastic scoop will increase the water carrying-capacity of the gutters. It will also reduce the incidences of near-foundation water spills that usually result from clogged downspouts. Doing so will therefore go a long way towards helping you to keep your foundation safe from damage.
If your foundation has experienced any damage caused by poorly functioning gutters, contact a foundation contractor at a company like RCW Construction to examine the damage.Share