Are you aware of the animals that could be getting inside your house? And how they could get there? Gutters play a surprisingly important role in keeping away a variety of pests and critters from penetrating into your house. The absence of gutters sets any house up for a potential invasion.
The problem starts with too much water. Without gutters, too much water runs off the roof and splashes down the house onto the ground. Over time, too much water leads to issues like rotting fascia, rotting trim, erosion of soil or damaged foundation. When the materials comprising your home are rotted or worn down from water, they become an easier target for eager animals to break through and take up residence inside.
Ultimately, it’s about fortifying all the elements of your home against water and debris. 53% of homeowners are concerned about pests. Based on how quickly they can get into a house, the other 47% should be concerned as well. Each year in the winter, rodents invade an estimated 21 million homes in the U.S. Mother Nature will always be there as a threat – it’s important that you don’t give it an added opportunity.
Here are 3 intruders that are more likely to show up if gutters are not present:
1. Attic Dwellers
Squirrels can chew through fascia. What does that have to do with gutters? Plenty, in fact.
Gutters tend to hang from the fascia board, so their very presence creates a physical barrier between the squirrel and the point of entry. But without gutters, water and the elements can rot your fascia, soffit, and trim gradually over time. That will make those surfaces more vulnerable to squirrels chewing through in order to gain an access point. On average, they need only 2.5 inches of space in order to penetrate. Without that defense, you may find rodents taking up residence in your attic.
Not all critters are as persistent as squirrels, but if there is weakness in your fascia board or other areas near your roof, then expect birds and bats to also take interest in what your attic has to offer.
2. Basement Dwellers
Much like the attic, the basement is vulnerable to animal intrusion. Without gutters, water never makes it very far from your home. Often it will land directly below where your roof ends and stand in pools unless there is a natural slope present. That high volume of water can create problems. The first main issue around your foundation is erosion; water disrupts the soil and washes material away that would otherwise be solidly in place. The second issue is ice. If water remains stagnant around your house, it can freeze and put pressure on your foundation. In both cases, the structural integrity of your house is less than 100 percent and becomes more vulnerable to external intrusion. Raccoons, mice and rats are all likely candidates for weaseling their way into a vulnerable basement.
3. Water Pool Dwellers
Forgetting the attic or basement, homeowners without gutters could still have their hands full with standing pools of water around the home. Aside from the general eyesore, standing pools of water are a breeding ground for insects and bacteria. The most common inhabitants of stagnant water in a backyard are mosquitoes, and with mosquitoes comes the threat of diseases.
No one is saying that squirrels or raccoons will show up tomorrow if you don’t install gutters today. But if the installation of gutters is ignored for long enough, the effects can be widespread and devastating. One of those effects is that your house becomes vulnerable to animal intrusion. Your house might feel like a zoo from time to time, but let’s make sure that you’re not adding any species anytime soon.