When gutters fail, the rest of your home is put at risk for water damage. The water that the gutter system is meant to carry away from the house begins running down the front of the house. Water seeps behind the siding, into the window frames and eventually, down into the basement. All of this can be avoided if you keep your gutters in good condition. Here, you'll find a few tips to help you protect your gutters from failure.

Keep them Clean

How often do you make your way out to clean the gutters on your home? Chances are, you're like many and tend to the gutters maybe once a year – or every other year. If your gutters are neglected, they will fill up with debris. When that debris gets saturated with rain water, it becomes very heavy. That weight is very damaging to a gutter system.

If you have lots of trees around your home and constantly battle leaves in the gutters, consider installing leaf-guards on the gutters. These screens prevent the debris from making its way into the gutter, and instead, it all sits right on top waiting to get washed away.

Keep up with Repairs

If you notice that the gutters are leaking anywhere, that they are sagging, or that they have been damaged by a falling limb or debris, act quickly. The longer one section of the gutter is in disrepair, the further the damage will spread. One leak will soon be two.

Keep Downspouts Clear

All of the downspouts have to drain out somewhere. Make sure that you're keeping the drain areas clear. If they become filled with debris, they can cause the downspouts to begin to fail. You want free-flowing water to protect all of the seams and seals.

Holiday Decorations

You know you love hanging the lights around your house, but is that what caused the old gutters to get damaged? If you use the gutter clips to hang your lights, make sure that you're using them correctly and that you are supporting the gutter when you position and remove the clips.

Another thing to do is make sure that the extension cord powering the lights is secured to the side of the house. If the heavy extension cord is left swinging in the wind, it will put a great deal of strain on the gutters that are supporting the lights.

Talk with your local gutter company, like California Gutter Company INC., to learn more about protecting your gutters for an extended life.