Seasonal Home Maintenance: Protecting Gutters from Debris Buildup

As the seasons change, it is important for homeowners to be proactive about maintaining their homes. One area that is especially vulnerable during spring, summer, and fall is the home’s gutters. Gutters easily become clogged with leaves, sticks, seeds, and other debris. When gutters get clogged, it can lead to a number of problems, such as water damage, foundation issues, flooded basements, and damage to landscaping.

Seasonal Home Maintenance

Performing seasonal gutter maintenance and using gutter protection solutions means homeowners can keep their gutters clear and prevent damage to their homes.

Spring Gutter Maintenance

Spring brings falling seeds, leaves, and debris. After a long winter, gutters are already vulnerable to clogs from debris that accumulated over the fall and winter. Once spring rains arrive, debris starts washing down and accumulating again.

Homeowners should inspect their gutters in early spring. Look for sagging areas that indicate built up debris. Use a small trowel to scoop out leaves, sticks, and other debris. A garden hose with a high pressure nozzle can help blast away caked on debris.

It’s also a good time to look for leaks and holes. Patch any small holes with gutter sealant. For larger holes or seam leaks, replace sections of damaged gutter.

The gutter experts at AD Green Gutters and Screens say that spring is an ideal time for installing gutter guards. Options like gutter screens mount over the gutters to prevent debris from washing in while still allowing water to flow. Guards prevent debris buildup and reduce the need for seasonal maintenance.

Summer Gutter Maintenance

Summer often brings more debris like leaves, twigs, and seeds. Increased rainfall in summer also adds pressure on gutters, so it’s important to do routine maintenance during summer months.

Inspect gutters weekly and remove any accumulated debris. This prevents moisture from being trapped in gutters and causing corrosion or wood rot.

Check downspouts and drain extensions as well to ensure they are secure and direct water several feet away from the foundation. Clogged downspouts can’t effectively divert water, leading to flooded gutters.

Fall Gutter Maintenance

Fall brings falling leaves and more rain. Make sure gutters are clear before heavy leaf-drop begins. Inspect gutters and look for new problem areas. Seams may have opened more over the summer. New holes or leaks may also have developed, so make all repairs before heavy fall rains arrive.

As leaves begin to fall, stay proactive with cleaning. Don’t allow leaves to pile up; use a leaf blower to clear off debris before it gets washed down the gutters. Take advantage of dry days to get up on a ladder and scoop or hose out debris.

Winter Gutter Maintenance

Once winter arrives, gutters still need some attention. Even though leaves have dropped, gutters can still clog from debris like sticks and seeds. Left clogged and filled with water, freeze-thaw cycles can start to pull gutters loose. Ice dams also frequently form behind clogs.

Prior to first freeze, spray out or scoop away any remaining debris. This allows water to drain freely and avoids ice buildup. Check gutter hangers and braces to make sure they are secure as loose gutters are prone to ice dams and damage.

Never try knocking down icicles from gutters. Wait for sun and temps to loosen ice dams. Attempting to break ice loose can damage gutters. Stay off ladders if gutters are icy, too. Only clean debris when gutters have thawed.


Protecting gutters with proactive seasonal maintenance and debris guards saves homeowners time and prevents costly gutter repairs. Maintained gutters also protect the rest of the home from water damage. A little time invested in gutter care goes a long way in maintaining a home’s roofing, siding, landscape, and foundation.

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