Few things are more validating than successfully completing a do-it-yourself home improvement project. Granted, DIY projects are just more for the “list,” but they can save you a whole lot of money. When you have an older home like myself, these renovations mean I can invest in my home while still being able to pay the dreaded utilities. First up on my list is my gutter system.
Few of us are or know of someone who’s fascinated by the gutter system. My father, the “gutter getter” as my family affectionately calls him, is one of these folks. He will stand outside during a storm and gaze in awe, but while others are admiring the thunder and lightning, he’s watching his gutters go to work protecting his home. I have no qualms about admitting I’d rather watch paint dry, but now that I have a Dayton home of my own, I can appreciate the role gutters play in safeguarding my home. Or rather, the role they played unsuccessfully when I first moved in.
When It Rains, It Pours
We’ve had a summer of minimal rain and beautiful weather, but it seems every time it does rain, it’s torrential, and I quickly learned my gutter system wasn’t up to the task of defending against fierce downpours. Engrained in my head is the disparaging image of a waterfall pouring in to my family room windows. The blessing of a finished basement becomes a curse, and by the storm’s end, I’ve used up all available bath towels and an entire roll of paper towels.
Inspecting gutters is a fairly simple process, especially if you have a one-story like me. You need to see your gutters in action to get a clear idea of how effective they are, which usually means going out in the rain. I found the following video to be a helpful guide. Upon inspection, I noticed that the area of my gutters that were leaking water into my windows and basement were plugged with leaves, even though I had cleaned them three months back because of a few large trees nearby.
Gutter Guards Are Painless…Really
After cleaning my gutters, I decided it would be a good idea to purchase some gutter guards at Home Depot or Lowe’s to prevent leaves from clogging up my gutters so quickly. As far as do-it-yourself home improvement projects go, installing gutter guards is painless. I measured the length of my gutters before buying guards so I knew how many to purchase. Here’s what I needed for the install:
A ladder: Being able to reach the gutters is always a bonus.
Hands: The gutter guards I got snap right in to your gutters.
Scissors: I had to shorten some of the guards whenever I reached an end of the gutter system.
Flathead Screwdriver: I had to remove some pieces that I think help hold the gutters in place before I could snap in a gutter guard. Then I would poke the screw through the guard’s mesh and return the piece back to its original state.
An afternoon: It took me 3 hours tops to work my way around my house.
Did gutter guards help solve your problem? Share your thoughts on Twitter #DIYGutterGuards.
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