Gutters are designed to move water to the downspouts. The water takes with it leaves and other debris which easily plug downspouts when unprotected. Enter: The gutter strainer or gutter basket. Even the old strainer shown in the photo still holds back up debris.
Do you see the pile up of material around the strainer – better there where it can be cleaned than deep in the drain where it is sure to plug up the drainage system over time.
Therefore, one simple but crucial part of the whole gutter system: “Baskets” that sit over the drain letting water drain AND preventing leaves to spill down leaders.
With this fall gutter cleaning be sure to check the condition of all your downspout baskets and replace worn ones. Do NOT leave any downspout unprotected or even without a basket!
The image shows a copper gutter. Many gutters are made of aluminum. Do not mix the two materials – EVER! Put near each other, a chemical reaction will “eat away” the metal of the gutter and result in a really expensive gutter replacement in a few years. In other word, copper gutters require copper baskets. Aluminum gutters require aluminum baskets.
Yes, copper baskets are expensive but they are no where near the cost of a stopped up drainage line. Unsuspecting homeowners who want to save themselves some money on an unseen part often put an aluminum basket into a copper gutter – NEVER!
Copper with copper – aluminum with aluminum.
Think of the gutters in your house as the arteries in your body. One clog and serious problems arise. It’s just a question of when……Luckily this issue is avoidable. In this year’s fall gutter cleaning check to be sure that all downpours have strainers/baskets covering them.