- Gutters frequently freeze when debris or a barrier prevents drainage.
- Even clean gutters can freeze in areas with severe winter snow, sleet, and freezing rain.
- Frozen gutters can cause all sorts of problems for your home. Sagging or pulling away from your house, cracking or damaging the gutters themselves, and forming icicles along the gutter lines are just a few.
- You can take preventative measures to keep your gutters from freezing. That includes cleaning them out regularly, checking that they are adequately sloped, and using deicers (such as magnesium chloride).
- Removing snow from your roof regularly and installing gutter guards are critical.
Living in Rockwall, we’re all too familiar with the colder winter months. And one of the nuisances that come along with the frigid temperatures is frozen gutters. Frozen gutters are usually a terrible indication since they can cause irreversible damage to your roof and siding. But what exactly causes gutters to freeze, and how to prevent it?
In this blog post, Tiger Roofing LLC will discuss what causes gutters to freeze, the dangers of frozen gutters, and ways to stop them from freezing this winter.
What Causes Gutters to Freeze?
Gutters frequently freeze when debris or a barrier prevents drainage. Since trapped snow and ice cannot escape even when it thaws, it refreezes and forms a thick layer. However, the elements might work against you at times. Even clean gutters can freeze in areas with severe winter snow, sleet, and freezing rain.
Frozen gutters can be prevented. You can maintain your gutters ice-free all winter long with the correct strategies.
What are the Dangers of Frozen Gutters?
Frozen gutters can cause all sorts of problems for your home. For one thing, the weight and pressure of the ice and snow can cause them to sag or even pull away from your house entirely. Additionally, when water freezes, it expands, which means that frozen water in your gutters can crack or damage the gutters themselves.
You can even see ice buildup in your gutters and the formation of icicles along the gutter lines. Ice-filled gutters cannot drain the melting snow on your roof, resulting in deadly ice dams.
Ice dams form when water refreezes on areas of your roof because it has nowhere to drain. Heavy ice sections will harm your roof by weighting down the roofing system, producing problems with your shingles, and causing water damage.
Melting snow that cannot drain down your gutters and be redirected away from your property might result in pools of water accumulating around your home’s foundation. This can lead to basement leaks, and foundational difficulties can develop if the situation isn’t handled promptly. In short, you don’t want to mess around with frozen gutters.
Ways To Stop Gutters from Freezing:
Fortunately, you can take preventative measures to keep your gutters from freezing this winter.
- Clean Out Your Gutters
Yes, it’s a time-consuming task, but it’s necessary. The role of your gutter system is to take water away from your property as effectively as possible. Gutters that are blocked with debris are unable to do so. Clogged gutters are a major reason they freeze in the winter; therefore, keeping them clear of debris is critical to preventing this. Make certain that your downspouts are cleaned as well. The most common reason for frozen downspouts is debris obstruction. If your downspout does not drain correctly, your entire gutter will likely freeze solid.
- Check That Your Gutters Are Sloped.
Gutters are ineffective if the slope is too flat. Water ends up gathering and sitting in the gutter system, which can cause it to expand and freeze during the winter. A sound gutter system is sloped so that gravity can divert water from the house. Before the cold season arrives, ensure your gutter system is properly sloped.
- Consider Using Deicers
Winter weather may sometimes outperform even the most well-prepared gutter system. In areas prone to snowstorms and high temperatures, gutter systems may require more than a normal cleaning or adequate slope to withstand the freezing water. Consider adding deicers to your gutter runs. However, never use rock salt or other de-icing agents in your gutters. Table salt, Epsom salt, and sea salt are all corrosive to metal. Instead, sprinkle some magnesium chloride into your gutters to prevent ice from forming. This deicer works at far lower temperatures than rock salt, but the runoff is also safe for your gutters, plants, and pets, which is not true of most other deicers.
- Remove the Snow from Your Roof
Snow on the roof, particularly after a snowfall, might overwhelm your anti-freezing measures. During a blizzard, the gutters can become clogged with snow long before any salt can melt. The snow must then be physically removed before it partially melts and refreezes into ice. Instead of going around on the roof, a roof rake allows you to conduct this operation from the side of the home. You can also use other tools to clean the gutters or call a professional for help.
- Install Gutter Guards
Installing gutter guards will keep your gutters from freezing in the winter and help keep debris out, leaving your gutters clean and clear to drain water. Some gutter guards incorporate heating components, which are suited for cold-weather areas and can assist defrost the ice and melting snow.
- Use Heated Gutter Cable
Direct application of heat is a time-honored method of preventing and removing ice. Still, it requires particular equipment in your gutters. Gutter cables are designed to withstand water, cold, and sunshine. If you don’t want to go up to your gutters after every blizzard, or if you don’t want to keep dumping rock salt in them, try these cables.
- Insulate Your Roof
It melts when the snow on your roof or attic becomes too heated. With no warm roof underneath, the snowmelt flows down the rooftop and refreezes when it reaches the edges. Water expands and presses up against the roof shingles, causing damage. To avoid this, insulate your attic. Heat is kept from rising to the roof via insulation. It keeps you warm inside while keeping your roof cold.
Gutters are an important part of your home’s structure, but they’re often forgotten until there’s a problem. Don’t let frozen gutters be one of those problems! Use these tips to keep them functioning properly all winter long.
Tiger Roofing LLC provides full-service gutter maintenance for all your needs in Rockwall. This includes routine inspections and cleaning to keep your gutters in good working order.