Have you ever seen a chipmunk crawl out of your home’s downspout? It's happened to me before. While I know it’s crucial to keep downspouts free from debris such as leaves, I never thought about animals residing in them.
Functioning gutters and downspouts are critical to protecting our homes from damage. Here are some things you can do to prevent these unwanted guests.
1. Inspect them regularly.
A buildup of debris, such as leaves and sticks, can cause water to pool, causing damage to your home. Rodents can also use this debris to make a lovely, warm winter home. Removing debris regularly is a great way to prevent this from happening.
2. Trim your trees.
If you have large tree branches hanging over your roof, it’s a good idea to remove them. If not, these branches can serve as gateways to your roof. Having at least an eight-foot clearing around your entire roof is recommended. If you can’t do this safely, consider calling a professional tree trimming service in your area.
3. Keep your property tidy.
If your property provides a food source, these critters will likely show up uninvited. To prevent this:
- Keep garbage cans and composting bins covered.
- Remove rotting vegetables from your garden.
- Keep compost piles away from your home.
- Remove overgrown or rotting foliage.
4. Visit your local hardware store.
If you’re looking for a DIY project, visit your local store. There are many options available that will help keep rodents out of your gutters and downspouts. Options include:
- Gutter screens
- Metal or vinyl gutter covers
- Wedge downspout screens
- Downspout strainers
- Vinyl downspout rodent guards
- Gutter brush or spikes
- Foam products
5. Call the professionals.
If a DIY project isn’t for you, consider calling a local business that installs gutter guard systems professionally. They can inspect your home and provide solutions that work best for you.
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