Roofing and Gutter Systems: Maintaining Proper Drainage for Roof Health

When thinking about water damage, does a good gutter system come to mind? Improper drainage is a major factor when looking at causes of water damage to roofing, siding, and even foundation. However, proper maintenance for residential roofing and gutter systems helps prevent leaks and damage.

The Role of Gutters in Protecting Roof Health

Gutters are used to direct the flow of water off the roof and into a specified location, likely somewhere away from the foundation. This keeps the water flowing off the roof, but from damaging the exterior of the structure.

If not properly cared for, a gutter system can easily become clogged and cause pooling on the roof. Other than exposing vulnerabilities in the roof, this can damage the roof’s structure, and lead to a slew of other issues like damaged siding, flooding, and landscape erosion.

What Else Can Gutters Do?

Not only will a good gutter system help with the longevity and structure of your roof, but it can have a positive effect on the following aspects of your property as well:

  • Siding: With rainwater and debris coming down the roof, think about where it would go without gutters. The first victim is your siding. Water damage can seep through windows and doors through siding, and cause major repairs to be needed inside and out.
  • Foundation: Flooding in basements is a costly experience. Without intentional drainage, water can flow off the roof however, and get through any cracks or openings to your foundation. Over time, runoff can pool in certain areas and cause water damage to ground-level floors as well.
  • Landscaping erosion: Watering the plants is helpful, but pooling and streaming water into your flower beds and landscaping can wash away your curb appeal. With proper drainage, you can prevent heavy streams of water from pooling and spraying into your soil, saving your plants from erosion.

Maintenance and Best Practices for Roofing and Gutter Health

By regularly inspecting and cleaning your gutters, you can keep them working optimally to divert rainwater safely away from your home. After storms, this can be especially important in the event of excess debris and ice. Roof maintenance may be needed less often when gutters are maintained, but should still happen once or twice a year.

How to Tell You Need Cleaning

Warning signs roofing and gutter inspections are long overdue include visible moss or grass growth, water stains on exterior walls, or gutters nearly overflowing from compacted debris. Neglecting cleaning leads to decaying fascia boards behind gutters or pooled water weighing down and buckling gutters or roofing entirely.

Installing gutter guards or covers deters some debris buildup but does not eliminate all need for cleaning. Such devices simply make cleaning less frequent, such as once per year. Use caution when inspecting or cleaning gutters yourself. Avoid leaning ladders against gutters, which can detach them from the house. Never clear gutters in lightning, high winds, or wet weather raising your risk of falls.

How to Clean Your Gutters

In order to ensure thorough cleaning, consider contacting a service or roofing company to help clean your gutter system and inspect it for damage. Typically, a professional will use a ladder and scoop or hose to remove debris. Flushing with water ensures you remove compacted dirt at the bottom. They will also inspect connections and use caulk to fix small leaks.

For second-story roofs, consider professional power washing, which blasts out stubborn buildup. If you are unable to safely clean your gutter system yourself, contact a local roofing expert to keep your system in good condition.

How Often You Should Clear Gutters

This varies by climate, weather patterns, overhanging trees, and roof type. Most experts advise cleaning 2-4 times per year. In climates with year-round rainfall, such as the Pacific Northwest, clean every 2-3 months. In seasonal climates, clean before fall leaf drop, after winter snowmelt, and mid-summer.

Interested in learning more about roofing inspections and what a professional might find? Read this blog to learn more about common issues that are found during inspection services.

Learn More

The Benefits of Properly Maintained Roofing and Gutter Systems

When you put the proper amount of time and energy into maintaining your gutter system, it pays off. Roof health, budget, and property value will all benefit from the investment you make for proper drainage.

Roof Health

As highlighted above, your roof benefits from the gutter system, as well as the maintenance you put towards it. Your roof lasts longer, with less repairs and structure damage. Your safety is also impacted here as well. Pooling water on your roof wears on the integrity. A failure of your roof can have a catastrophic impact on your home or business.


Investing early in the health of your roofing and gutters can have a tremendous impact on your overall budget. The cost of routine maintenance yearly on both roofing and gutters will be substantially less than a new roof altogether. Aside from this cost-benefit, you may also notice you need to spend less on landscaping, interior repairs due to water damage, and basement-level repair costs like flooding.

Property Value and Curb Appeal

Visible damage to your property can affect the perception of your home or business. Damage to siding due to gutter clogs can cause this staining and mildew or mold buildup. Property value can be affected by this, or foot traffic to your business. Keeping gutters clear of blockage will ensure a clean exterior from siding to landscape.

Gutter systems can also be customizable to enhance the exterior of your property, and different materials might be more suitable for your climate and budget.

Trinity Construction Can Help With Roofing and Gutter Maintenance

Make the most of your roof’s life with an updated gutter system. Trinity Construction Services can help create and execute a gutter design, help implement it, and keep things clear for years to come. For your roofing and gutter needs, contact Trinity Construction Services to schedule a consultation.