Our Current Blog Articles
October 16, 2017
The Importance of Clean Gutters
The importance of clean gutters cannot be overstated, and Alpine Gutters & Downspouts is one company that truly does understand how significant this task is when it comes to protecting your home. Here we provide you with a few great reasons why gutters should be properly cleaned at least twice a year. Just be sure to give yourself a little extra time when the season arrives, and make a small checklist of what needs to be accomplished for your gutter system.
Gutter systems are your home's defense for keeping water and snow from damaging your foundations, roof, walkways, driveway, and landscaping. If leaves, nests or debris become clogged within your system, this only spells disaster, and many headaches to deal with. This can all be avoided with simple gutter cleaning and proper maintenance.
If you don’t understand the importance of clean gutters, here are some issues that you will notice if your gutter system is ignored:
If the water runoff does not have a clean pathway, it will drip down the sides; this causes the siding to rot, and even pull away from the side of the house, causing unsightly stains on your siding and creating ice dams in the gutters in the winter. The roof may also show signs of rotting, which may lead to replacing tiles and replacing the gutter system to rectify the issue.
The home’s foundation can also be affected because the gutters send water to part of the yard or area around your house that can absorb it. But when the gutters are broken or overflowing, the water drips down, causing cracks which will eventually make their way into the basement or other susceptible areas. Mold and rot indoors will be the end result, and it can even chip away at the foundation of the home, causing outrageously expensive repairs in the future, not to mention toxic molds.
Not only will a bird's nest or small rodents nest cause clogging in your gutters, but they also attract larvae from mosquitoes and other flies or insects, which may carry diseases. The importance of clean gutters is that by keeping this type of debris out of your system, you’ll protect not only yourself but your family and fellow animals friends. Illnesses such as West Nile virus are extremely dangerous for children and pregnant women but are easily avoided by eliminating potential breeding grounds for larvae. Do not provide a hospitable home in your gutter systems for these creatures, as everyone will suffer for it!
By protecting your gutters, you are in a sense protecting your home from safety hazards too. But it is also important to mention that cleaning your gutters can be a dangerous job, especially for the elderly, or where there may be a greater chance of falling because of the height of the roof or the temperatures outdoors. Don't ever try to clean your gutters without someone standing by to help or hold the ladder sturdy, and never attempt to do a job that could cause you serious injury. Alpine Gutters & Downspouts is in the business of providing you with the proper tools, experienced installers and maintenance crews, and affordable systems for all budgets.
A Word on Power Lines
When cleaning gutters around a power cable that descends from the power pole to the roof of a building, it is imperative that you do a visual inspection of the electrical cable first, where it connects to the roof. This ensures that the protective wire insulation hasn’t rubbed off.
If you notice that the cable appears to have some significant damage, do not attempt to take this into your own hands. It is essential to call a licensed professional electrical contractor to fix the issue immediately. If it is raining and there is an electrical wire problem, do not attempt to clean out the gutters until the cables are fixed. Water is a formidable conductor of electricity and can cause serious harm.
Procedure for Common Sense Gutter Cleaning
If you understand the importance of clean gutters, have some experience cleaning them, and the danger risk is minimum, here are some quick tips for getting a jump start on this task before the winter weather sets in:
- Ensure large tree limbs with falling leaves are pruned away from your gutter system to prevent more leaves from clogging it
- Wear protective clothing, gloves, and mask
- Have an extendable ladder and spotter with you
- Have a scooper handy to get all the debris out, and a garden hose to rinse it all down through the downspout
- Have a garbage bag handy for debris
This can give you a good start on the cleaning of your gutter systems, but it is not the end result. You may want to hire a professional company such as Alpine Gutters & Downspouts to check out your system and see where there may be issues in the future. Let us provide you with a detailed inspection to get the most out of your gutters year round.
Remember, gutter systems are a huge help for your home and can save you a lot of headaches in the long run. But they are a solution that requires ongoing cleaning and checking. Gutters and downspouts must be inspected at regular intervals twice a year, more if our area sees heavier snowfalls or lots of rain and wind. The importance of clean gutters is that the system acts as a raincoat. It will help in common weather situations, but will not endure in extreme situations if it’s not cared for properly. Always check on your gutters to see if they are in stable condition.
Now that you are aware of the importance of clean gutters, give Alpine Gutters & Downspouts a call today for an estimate on cleaning, repairs or maintenance. We look forward to hearing from you and giving you the best quality gutter systems, as well as friendly and responsive service.
September 20, 2017
Benefits of Installing a Gutter Protection System
Have you ever thought about the benefits of installing a gutter protection system on your Denver home? At Alpine Gutters & Downspouts, we know how important it is to protect your gutters. They also protect your home from damage that could be incredibly costly. Today, we’ll cover even more reasons why you should consider installing a professional gutter system.
So why do you need gutter protection in the first place? Well, it's simple. Your gutters are doing the bulk load of work when the rain and snow comes, and that means added stress. They need a little help sometimes to run at optimum levels, and that’s where a gutter protection system can help out by alleviating clogs and overflows caused by leaves, dirt, debris and more.
Not only does a gutter protection system look good around your home, aesthetically speaking, it also enhances resale value and curb appeal. Not to mention that, by protecting structures and features – such as walkways, landscape and sitting areas – from water damage, your home will always have a pleasing and manicured look. The seamless designs and bends of the system add to the continuity of your roofline as well, making it flow better to the eye.
Maintenance is minimal when it comes to gutter protection systems because they allow a normal breeze to blow away the majority of dirt, leaves, debris, and more. Plus, animals will no longer be trying to build a nest in your gutters because there is no way to enter. That means less work for you, and no unsafe high ladders to climb on the cold fall days.
Water damage is a big downside if you do not have gutter protection. Overflowing gutters are just a domino effect for worse things to come around the home such as destroyed tiles and roof, pooling around the home, which eventually penetrates the soil and enters into your basement or foundation. One of the big benefits of installing a gutter protection system is that you don’t have to worry too much about these types of issues.
Clogged gutters can eventually destroy your current gutter system which will cost you more in the long run. Protect what you have by installing a gutter protection system soon. Mold, mildew and bacterial growth will be just some of the issues you'll eventually experience, making your home an unhealthy environment. Keeping rain water flowing freely is exactly the goal here, and the right system for you will do the job.
There are a variety of gutter systems to consider, but here at Alpine Gutters & Downspouts, we highly recommend Leaf Relief. Our customers love this product and independent testing showed that it was 100% effective against typical gutter enemies like leaves and debris.
Now that you understand the benefits of installing a gutter protection system, contact Alpine Gutters & Downspouts today to learn more about our services. We are confident you will enjoy our virtually maintenance free gutter protection systems. Call for your appointment!
September 7, 2017
How to Recognize and Fix a Clogged Gutter
Today, Alpine Gutters & Downspouts in Denver shares how to recognize and fix a clogged gutter. If you have a run in with your gutter system, be sure to call on our qualified experts who know how to rectify the situation promptly and properly. A clogged gutter can cause severe damage to your Denver home, including landscaping, driveways, walkways, and even your roof. So, don’t delay!
When it comes to how to recognize and fix a clogged gutter, start with the symptoms. You may be experiencing the following:
- Water spilling over the edges of gutter
- Spraying water from gutter seams and elbow joints
- There is no water flow out the bottom of downspout extensions
- The earth directly below the gutter is slowly being eroding and disrupted
- The siding and fascia are showing signs of peeling paint
- Signs of wet, moist, or dirty siding underneath the gutter areas
- Gutters are pulling away from the fascia which is usually caused by too much weight from clogged gutters
Finding where the gutter is clogged is your next move. You will want to look at the downspout wire cage and ensure it is not full of debris, bent or broken. You will find this where the downspout meets the gutter. Replace if necessary. Next, look for the gutter hangers and spikes that may have slipped off from the fascia or become lodged in the gutters, backing up debris. And finally, seams and downspout elbows are a great way to recognize and fix a clogged gutter, all you have to do is take a small screwdriver and gently tap along the downspout and gutter and listen for a dull thud, which indicates a clog. Remember, some clogs could be underground and will likely need a professional gutter cleaning.
So now you have found the clog. If you are confident you can fix it yourself, here are the steps:
- Remove and clean it thoroughly.
- Remove all debris in the gutter.
- If the cage is not damaged too badly, reattach it into the downspout hole.
- Replace any damaged screens or cages.
- If the clog is caused by loose hangers or spikes, clean debris, reposition gutter supports.
- If the clog is at a seam or elbow, try to free the object using a snake or long object to push it out, or gently pressure wash it. If you can reach the elbow or seam, simply disconnect and clean.
- If your clog is below ground, try using a snake or telescopic scope to clean it out, you can also use a hose to try to dislodge the jam, but if you are not making any headway, you should opt to call on the professionals for gutter cleaning to avoid further damaging any areas.
While you now know how to recognize and fix a clogged gutter with these easy steps, be sure to take safety precautions. Never attempt to ascend a steep roofline without help or a professional company such as Alpine Gutters and Downspouts. It is surprising, just how many falls occur each year from people trying to attempt to clean or fix their gutters! We are the leading company that knows how to safely protect your home with superior quality gutters, downspouts and even seamless gutter solutions that are virtually maintenance free. Give us a call today for a free quote.
August 14, 2017
Late Summer Home Maintenance, Gutters and More
Today, Alpine Gutters and Downspouts shares ways to get started on late summer home maintenance, gutters and more. You'd be surprised at how much more efficient your gutters will work! Plus, the money saving benefits you will be rewarded with are well worth the effort. Read on to see how you can prepare your home during the waning days of summer, so you can avoid major issues come winter.
- Clean out your gutters and downspouts
Gutter debris like sticks, seeds, leaves and rodent droppings from the previous winter might clog your spouts and cause gutter overflow when the rains start pouring. To avoid having to repeat the cleaning after the fall foliage, trim any low hanging trees near your gutters, and be sure to inspect for any damage such as cracks, weakened seams, and clogs in the downspout. This task will involve some elbow grease and ladders, so if you are unable to reach, be sure to call on the gutter cleaning professionals to lend a hand. You can also ask about seamless gutters and gutter guards to make life easier.
- Deck and porch maintenance
Get rid of the summer dust and check the surface of your outdoor spaces for signs of holes, cracks or chipping paint. You will need to putty or stone fill any lacking areas. Sand away chipped or cracked paint or stain, then repaint the surface before the wet season starts. This will save a lot of grief next summer when you want to get outdoors.
- Repair your driveway
Fill in any cracks in your driveway if it is paved to prevent winter rains from eroding the surface. Use cement, liquid cement filler, asphalt filler, epoxy filler, or concrete crack sealant. Be sure to remove any vegetation growing in the cracks first for a clean finished look.
- Clean or replace air filters
Bacteria, mold, and mildew from humid summer days can wreak havoc on the air filters. Wash the old filter and leave it to dry in the sun, or look for a replacement at home improvement stores that have a hypo-allergenic, mildew resistant filter. Have a professional check your HVAC systems as well and replace them if necessary.
- Inspect your roof
A visual inspection of the roof is essential. Look for loose shingles and soft spots as well as curling of shingles or brittle shingles. This could be a sign that the gutters or downspouts are damaged or at risk. Check your soffits for discoloration, which could mean there's a leak, and don't forget about checking your attic for any ceiling stains.
- Clean and store your outdoor furniture
Clean your outdoor furniture and leave it to dry in the sun. If you detect signs of damage, spray the furniture with outdoor paint for wood, metal or plastic. Be sure to get yourself a tarp and cover your furniture for the winter.
- Replace weather stripping on the door
If you are noticing cracks or wear on your weather stripping, now is the time to replace them to avoid heat escaping your home and raising your heating bills.
- Clean out your outdoor garbage bins and recycling bins
By wiping your trash cans after summers hot, humid days and the areas around them, it will kill bacteria. Place a clean garbage bag in the can immediately after spraying, keeping cleaning agent trapped inside which will deter rodents.
- Clean your garbage disposal
Humidity and the sun will increase bacteria population in your kitchen sink and disposal. Pour garbage disposal cleaner down the drain to help remove clogs and disinfect. You can also attack the sink with bleach or calcium, lime or rust cleaner to remove any food stains or rust.
- Vacuum upholstery
When the windows are kept open all summer long, and fans are circulating, your furniture upholstery, curtain, and pillows collect more dust than usual. Vacuum pillows and upholstery to freshen the curtains up according to the type of fabric, by either dry cleaning, vacuuming, or placing the curtains in the clothes dryer.
- Check the fireplace
If you own an electric fireplace, there is not a lot to do, but if you have a traditional fireplace, there is a bit more involved. It is recommended to clean your fireplace at least once a year, so any build-up of ash and soot won't become a fire hazard. Hire a professional if the job is too daunting for you.
- Trim your trellis and bushes
If your backyard, garden, or porch are shaded with a vine or trellis, simply trim back the vegetation before winter. This will reduce the debris falling into your outdoor space and protect the gutter. If you see the potential for even more debris affecting your gutters in fall and winter, consider adding a gutter protection system for greater peace of mind.
- Organize your shed or garden house
Get rid of junk you don't need in these spaces. Clean out any dirt and dust that has built up over the course of the year and organize your things for winter storage. That will give you more space for patio furniture and other items.
- Inspect the siding
After a season of hot temperatures and rain storms, always inspect your siding to ensure nothing has warped or been damaged. If you find a damaged panel, hire a licensed contractor to fix the issue.
If you have been thinking about freshening up any of the rooms in your home with a new coat of paint, now is the time to do it! Waiting until January to paint will make it difficult to open your windows for ventilation, and that is usually a busy time of year.
Late summer home maintenance, gutters and more, is a great way to get the upper hand on winters harsh ways. Alpine Gutters and Downspouts knows that well-maintained gutters and downspouts will be the first thing you should do to help preserve everything below your roofline, including landscaping, driveways, basements, and your roof. Give us a call today for a free quote on how we can help ensure your gutters and downspouts are functioning at their best.
July 26, 2017
Are Residential and Commercial Gutters the Same?
Alpine Gutters & Downspouts is here to answer all your questions and concerns, and some of you may be wondering, are residential and commercial gutters the same? Well, we are here to inform you that both are unique. Read on below to find out more.
The Legal Aspect
The most basic answer to this query relates to how most municipalities typically classify buildings and property.
Commercial buildings are subject to a unique set of laws and codes, and some of these differences may affect the installation and function of the gutters on commercial buildings. Commercial buildings require gutters of a certain size or material, and there may be rules concerning where and how gutter downspouts can discharge runoff water, so they don’t affect nearby businesses or create safety hazards.
Both commercial and residential gutter systems function almost equally. They direct roof runoff water (or melting ice and snow) away from the building to avoid costly foundation damage inside and outside of the home. Also, most residential and commercial gutters are constructed of aluminum or galvanized steel. Copper and vinyl gutters are mostly chosen for residences, not commercial buildings. Vinyl is a much cheaper option for homeowners who are looking to save money and not too concerned about aesthetics.
Gutters come mostly in 5 and 6-inch widths, therefore, commercial properties will most likely choose the larger version for more run off and the size of their building, there is even an option for 7 inches. They often come in 2 different shapes too; the K style and the U style. Both function equally well, but again it is up to the appearance you want to give your home or commercial building. K-style is the more popular choice for commercial buildings.
Guarding your Gutters
Commercial and residential gutters differ regarding what types of gutter protection system is recommended. For residences, gutter guards are designed to last a lifetime so that homeowners never need to clean their gutters again and find themselves struggling with a ladder. And for commercials properties, there are heavy-gauge, aluminum construction gutters that withstand the volume and debris pouring into them.
Determining what works best for you, whether it is residential or commercial, is something you really should sit down and discuss with your gutter company. Go over the costs, installation, materials, pros and cons, and even the aesthetic aspects of it all. There are so many varieties to choose from, with technology ever advancing. Be sure to ask about ongoing maintenance and the costs.
Remember, gutters protect your home from:
- Cracked/damaged foundation
- Infestations of mosquitos and insects breeding in standing water
- Staining of your fascia, soffits, walls, decks, patios, driveways
- Paint damage
- Rotting, rusting
- Landscaping damage
If you ever wondered, are residential and commercial gutters the same? We at Alpine Gutters and Downspouts, hope you know that they do have their similarities, but also their differences. Give us a call today, for a free quote on a new gutter system for your home or commercial dwelling.