Shedding Water

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We have seen record breaking rainfall recently in Texas and all that rain can play havoc with your yard and foundation if you’re not properly maintaining the drainage system around your home. Your roof sheds more water than any other component in your home.  

The surface area of your roof acts like a giant tarp catching rain water then channeling it down slopes and valleys until it discharges in a concentrated location around your home. All that water pouring onto the ground near your foundation can lead to unexpected and potentially expensive problems if the drainage systems around your home can’t keep up.   Here are a few things you can do to maintain this crucial system for your home.

Keep Up With The Gutters

Start by walking the perimeter of your home. Look up at your guttering and look for signs of wear and deterioration. Like everything else in your home, gutters wear over time and sometimes need to be repaired to be in good working order. Look for gutters that may be sagging, twisted or separated from the fascia board on the side of your home. Also look for signs of rust or gutter fasteners that appear to be “popping” out from the edge. If you spot any of these things, they should, of course, be repaired before they get worse.

While cleaning out the gutters may not be everyone’s favorite home-maintenance task, it is an important one. Gutters filled with debris will not drain properly causing them to overspill the edge, defeating the purpose of having them. Cleaning out the gutters is a simple process, but it does require getting on a ladder, which on some taller homes can be a bit daunting. Remember basic ladder safety like giving yourself 1 foot of run for every 4 feet of rise, don’t place a ladder in front of a door and be sure to extend the top of the ladder at least 3 feet over the roof. OSHA provides a full list of ladder safety tips for you to look over.

If climbing ladders isn’t your thing, consider preventing the debris from entering your gutters in the first place by keeping trees trimmed back off the roof at least 3 feet and having gutter guards installed. There are many designs for gutter guards and some work better than others, so do your homework before you choose a style to go with.

Don't Forget About The Downspouts

The bottom section of the guttering is one of the most critical pieces and often the part of the system that is damaged. Downspouts should be designed to take the water collected in your gutters and efficiently move it away from your home at least 6 feet. Take a walk around your home and look for disconnected downspouts, crushed downspouts or downspouts that don’t discharge the water far enough away. All of these issues can be easily corrected DIY style with parts from your local home improvement or hardware store.
Finally, it’s a good idea to walk around your foundation looking for signs of saturated, eroded or collapsed soil within a few feet of the foundation. This could mean you have an issue in this area with drainage which should be addressed. Often times, extending the guttering out and/or adding splash blocks will help, but in more severe cases a landscaping or drainage contractor may be necessary to correct the issue.


If you properly maintain your roof’s drainage system, you can help to prevent foundation issues caused by water pooling and ponding near your home. Look the system over twice a year in the spring and fall and be sure to correct any issues you discover before they become more serious.

We include this inspection as part of our annual home maintenance inspection or with any of our home checkup plans. So give us a call if you want us to take a look for you, a little maintenance now can go a long way toward saving you money in the long run.

Brian Botch

Brian Botch

Brian is the owner of House Fluent Inspections and is licensed by the Texas Real Estate Commission as a professional real estate inspector (TX License # 22824 ). In addition, he is certified by the National Swimming Pool Foundation as a Certified Pool Inspector.

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