Cleaning your eavestroughs is a can’t-miss investment
Here’s a tip for homeowners that’s like money in the bank: Clean out your eavestroughs right now, even if it’s raining, if you want to avoid a wet basement.
Environment Canada’s seven-day forecast for the GTA shows nothing but rain right through next Friday, including miserable weather for Halloween.
And we’ve all heard that Hurricane Sandy is pushing up the east coast. It’ll be reduced to a tropical storm by the time it reaches southern Ontario on Monday, but will be packing lots of rain and high winds.
A heavy downpour - almost a certainty in the next few days - strains the capacity of any eavestrough and will cause a clogged roof gutter to quickly overflow.
Most people don’t give their gutters much thought until a sustained, pounding rain, when they peer out the window and notice buckets of water cascading down from the roof line in a place where it shouldn’t be.
Oh yeah, it’s been a long time since they were cleaned out. I shoulda done something about that sooner.
I write this with authority because I have made that mistake several times, including late this summer, when my eavestroughs so thoroughly overflowed during a heavy rain that water seeped into my basement.
It didn’t amount to a flood, but it couldn’t have been any good for my foundation and had to be cleaned up.
And it was easily avoidable.
I have a long row of trees down that side of my house, which drop small twigs and leaves into the gutters.
If they aren’t cleaned out several times a year, the stuff washes down to the wire bulb that covers the opening to the downspout and clogs it, causing water from a heavy downpour to back up and then spill over the side.
You can only get away with inattentiveness to your eavestroughs for so long before trouble finds you.
If you’re lucky, the problem will be small.
But if the rain is extremely heavy and enough seeps into a small patch of ground below the point where it overflows the gutter, it can cause a flood and seriously damage the foundation, which could cost thousands to fix.
So tomorrow I’ll drag out the ladder, climb up to the eavestroughs wearing a pair of rubber gloves and muck out the area around the wire bulbs leading to the downspouts, even if I get drenched doing it.
I don’t need any more water coming into my basement.
Neither do you.