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National Gutters Day

National Gutters Day

Small steps can make a big difference. That’s the message behind National Gutters Day – part of National Maintenance Week, an annual campaign that will be re-launching in spring 2019. Taking just a few minutes to clear your gutters could save you thousands of pounds in the long run.

Chris King
From the Home team
3
minute read
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Posted 9 JANUARY 2020

National Gutters Day

National Maintenance Week is a campaign run by the UK’s oldest conservation body, SPAB (The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings), since 2002.

The nationwide drive promotes proper maintenance of all buildings, no matter how old they are, and it’s topped off with National Gutters Day – which highlights the importance of keeping gutters in order. Just ten minutes of gutter MOT and a good clear out could prevent serious damage and hefty bills further down the line.

Blocked gutters can cause serious damage

Cleaning gutters isn’t the nicest of tasks. For many, it’s one of those ‘put off until another day’ jobs. But blocked gutters can cause serious water damage that, over time, could lead to expensive and dangerous structural problems:

  • Roof damage. If gutters are blocked, rainwater and melting snow has nowhere to go. Water pooling on the roof can damage tiles and wooden fascias, which can lead to a leaky roof.
  • Interior damage. A leaky roof can damage furniture, flooring, interior walls and ceilings, and result in damp and mould problems. If water gets into electrical wiring, it could also be a fire hazard. And if internal joists are damaged, the entire roof could collapse.
  • Foundation damage. Gutters channel water from your roof, away from your home’s foundations. If they’re blocked during heavy rainfall, water could run off the roof and settle around the foundations. Over time, this can cause cracks in the exterior walls that could eventually lead to subsidence.

Gutter maintenance – what to look out for

  • Leaves and debris – especially during and after autumn
  • Check downpipes for any obstructions
  • Clear plants away from gutters – creepers, such as ivy, could suffocate and dislodge pipes
  • Ground-level gullies should be clear so water can drain away from foundations
  • Fit leaf/bird guards and wire balloons above downpipes, to help prevent debris from getting into the drainage system
  • Clear snow from parapets and valley gutters to stop moisture seeping into the joints
  • Check for leaks during a heavy rainstorm, to identify areas that need repairing

Gutter damage and home insurance claims

Gutter damage can make home insurance claims tricky. Most policies exclude damage that’s occurred over a long period of time, like a slow leak.

If damp has caused damage because of poorly maintained gutters, your insurance provider may reject your claim.

Storm damage

If guttering becomes damaged due to a storm and has caused damp issues, you could be covered under your buildings and contents policy. But this depends on what your insurance provider classes as weather and storm damage. Check your policy, if you’re not sure.

Escape of water

If your gutters overflow due to heavy rainfall and water runs into your home, damaging the walls and contents, you might be covered under your home insurance.

Gutters are often classed as a fixed water installation and may be covered under the ‘Escape of Water’ section of your policy.

It’s always a good idea to read your policy Ts and Cs carefully, to check whether you’re covered in the event of damage caused by gutters.

Finding the right insurance

By taking ten minutes to maintain your gutters, you might never have to claim for gutter damage on your insurance. And by comparing a range of home insurance quotes, you could save money and get a little peace of mind.

So why not compare home insurance with us today, to see if you can save.

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