It’s a question many landlords will be asking themselves this winter – How do I protect my guttering to prevent damage to my property?
Guttering is a small but very important part of a property, as it keeps water away from the walls and windows and protects the building from water damage.
Maintaining the guttering can be difficult – they are often situated at heights that require a ladder to access – but it is vital that they’re kept clear of debris. If debris builds up in your gutters, it may allow water into the property, causing damp and rot that can be both expensive and difficult to fix.
You may not be aware that moss washed off the roof by rainfall and fallen leaves from nearby trees can cause extensive damage to your property – if they accumulate in gutters and downpipes, they could impede the flow of water and eventually block the pipe altogether.
How do I protect my guttering?
Although clearing a blockage can be difficult, time-consuming and expensive, it is preventable.
For those of you asking, ‘How do I protect my guttering?’, Darren Searles, of JJ Roofing Supplies, has some advice on inexpensive accessories that can help prevent issues before they occur, dramatically reducing how much you’ll have to pay out for maintenance.
Gutter guards block large debris from getting into the gutters, and there are a couple of different options available. It’s worth checking different gutter guard reviews to ensure you select the right product for you.
- Gutter brushes – A gutter brush is a long, flexible brush, similar in appearance to an oversized pipe cleaner. It is simply laid into the gutter, where it fills the available space with its bristles. These bristles stop moss, leaves and other debris from getting into the gutter, without stopping any water from flowing past. There’s no space left for a bird to nest in either!
- Leaf guards – A leaf guard, or wire balloon, is a type of downpipe accessory designed to fit tightly into the top of the downpipe. It forms a cage, preventing debris from getting inside, while allowing water to flow past. They are usually made from flexible plastic that won’t degrade from exposure, and are flexible enough to fit into a range of differently sized downpipes.
When installing your guttering, especially when dealing with flat roofs, you may find that you need the gutter to penetrate through a surface.
Fortunately, there are several accessories available to make sure the passage through the structure is properly lined:
- Flat roof outlets – This can be placed at the lowest point of a flat roof, where it will act like the plughole on a sink. They often come with an integrated leaf guard, which is especially important in places where the gutter is partially within the structure of a building and is therefore much harder to access for repair work.
- Parapet wall outlets – When draining a flat roof through the side of a wall, it’s particularly important to ensure the surface the water is travelling through is completely sealed. If it isn’t, moisture will find its way into the wall, causing damp conditions that encourage rot and mould. Correcting these problems can be extremely expensive, so prevention is always better than cure. Using a properly installed parapet wall outlet means there’s no opportunity for water to work its way into any cracks or to sit on any exposed brickwork.
By installing the right gutter accessories, which can usually be done easily and cheaply, you will save yourself time and money in the long run, and help ensure your property is free of damp.
Any landlords worried about damage to their properties this winter must have an extensive range of covers in place. We offer 33 essential covers to all of our landlords, ensuring that your property remains safe and secure this winter. Check out our award-winning Landlord Insurance here: https://www.justlandlords.co.uk/landlord-insurance