On The Importance of Gutter Maintenance

So, as it turns out, gutter maintenance… Pretty important. This is the first that I’ve really brought it up on here, but we had some major flooding at the beginning of spring this year, and it was a bit of a process to figure out the problem. Now, we do have a sump pump, and it does work amazingly well, it’s just that our floor is slightly higher in the center and lower on both sides in our utility room. On one side is the sump pump, on the other is our new carpet. Water goes to both.

Our first idea on what was wrong was that we were getting water in the garage, so we thought, “Hey, if we stop that, it’ll probably stop flooding down in the utility room.”

So, fixing that. First, we got sandbags and put them in front of the area of the garage door that the water seemed to be coming in through. WRONG.

So, next we put down a silicone bead by the wall next to the stairs down to the utility room and waterproofed the stone. WRONG.

Then, I noticed an avalanche of water coming out of our gutter, right where water was coming into the garage. Interesting… So Matt got our step stool and cleaned out a blockage in the gutter and then we didn’t notice any more water coming into the garage. SUCCESS!!

Wait… But…

So a couple of nights later, during a hard rain, I do a “Just in Case” check in the utility room at around oh, I don’t know, 1 AM. And… there’s a bit of water coming in again. So I run up to the garage to see how much is coming in.

None.

Well, crap. The flooding in the utility room, the real issue since the utility room kind of dumps that water into the newly carpeted living room, was not coming from the garage.

And worse, when I get back down there, it’s rushing in like a river. So, after spending the next hour vacuuming up around 30ish gallons of water with a shop vac, I finally wake Matt up to get his help. I was trying to let him sleep since he had stayed up too late too many times that week. He takes over for the next five minutes, which is when the water stops coming in, perfect timing and all.

Then he does a walk around the house, and finds that we have another gutter that has come apart and is dumping copious amounts of rainwater right at the foundation of the house. So, Matt reattaches it and gets it all screwed back together, but what the crap? Why was the water coming in even with that going to the foundation?

Turns out, that happened to be directly where the line from our well came in. So here’s what we did. Matt got some great stuff (foam insulation stuff) from Home Depot, he sealed up the hole where the line from the well came in. Then he also added more insulation to the wall between the utility room and the living room. Then we also added a silicone bead to that wall again, just in case.

Since these fixes we haven’t had any water in the house. That was over a month ago.

In the end, every new homeowner really needs to know how important gutter maintenance is. We were having serious flooding, that would have caused hundreds or maybe even thousands of dollars in damage. We were very lucky that we always noticed it right when it was starting. And it was all because of some leaves in our gutters.

Seriously.

Just for fun, here’s a picture of Matt cleaning our gutters the other day.

IMG_9744

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2 thoughts on “On The Importance of Gutter Maintenance

  1. Pingback: Floods (Or How Water and Carpet don’t Mix) | From House to Home

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