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Toledo Roofers: Article About Understanding Rain Gutter Systems

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Shingles and flashing are common materials homeowners think about when contemplating roof care, but the rain gutter system is also an important component. All water flowing off the roof moves into these strategic channels so it can be safely funneled to the ground. Homeowners should know some basic information about their gutters so that preventive maintenance is a top priority. Toledo roofers can clean, inspect and repair these gutters each year.

Most gutters are supported by two different fastener types, including spike-and-ferrule or support brackets. Spike-and-ferrule is an old-fashioned fastener, requiring a spike to pierce the gutter at its opening and into the supporting fascia board. The benefit of these fasteners is the open gutter mouth. The spike literally holds the gutter open for steady water flow. However, they can pull out of the fascia board, forcing the gutters to bow. Support brackets are more common for newer installations. Brackets hold the gutter from underneath, cupping it with strength as the fastener attaches to the structure.

Although these gutter accessories are optional, mesh covers are important for homes with moderate debris littering the roof. Leaves, twigs and other natural debris can fly onto roofs via strong gusts of wind. This debris often flows into gutters, creating clogs at any point in the channel.

The roofing experts from Johnson Construction of Toledo would be happy to answer any question you have about residential roofing or siding.

Mesh covers allow water into the gutters, but block any larger items. Contractors can install these covers on almost any system.

Below horizontal gutters lining the roof eave are the elbows. As the name suggests, these channels are in the shape of a human elbow. Water moving horizontally enters the elbows vertically, moving the rainwater close to the structure's walls without breaking the flow. Homeowners want these channels to be as close to the walls as possible so gutters can be bracketed to the structure for stability in high winds.

The downspouts along the walls are critical to prevent foundation erosion. These vertical channels move water from the elbows, to the ground and away from the home. Soil around the structure should be relatively dry to keep the foundation stable for decades. Contractors inspect downspouts frequently to check for possible clogs or damage.

Even with the best preventive maintenance, some gutters can malfunction over time. During a steady rain, take a look outside. If there is a steady stream of water flowing from a gutter seam, that gap needs to be repaired as soon as possible. Small gutter problems can grow in size if not cared for properly.

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