Skip to Main Content
Gutter Topper

Calculating the Importance of Gutters and Drainage

Learning the importance of installing and maintaining gutter systems and drainage in your home to protect against flooding and water damage across Alabama and Tennessee.

Schedule Free Inspection

Homeowners who live in climates that get ample rainfall face the possibility of flooded basements or crawl spaces. Flooding can become a regular occurrence in locations with heavy rain. 

Your home is where you should feel safe from harsh weather and the outside elements. Water can enter your basement or crawl space during ongoing rainstorms, potentially leading to foundation problems, water damage, and mold. 

Is your property located near a coastal area? Was your home built on flat and level ground? Do you live in a region that receives heavy precipitation? If you answered yes to one of these questions, consider protecting your home with a professional waterproofing company. Taking proactive steps will help reduce or prevent flood and water damage through drainage pumps, waterproofing, and other safeguarding measures. 

How Rainwater Can Cause Water Damage

When rainwater hits the roof of a home without gutters or downspouts, it falls directly onto the ground, pooling around the foundation. If the ground is level, more water will accumulate and penetrate the soil, turning it into groundwater.

There’s a limit to how much water the ground can absorb before the soil becomes saturated. When the land reaches its capacity for holding water and the soil is waterlogged, the water will start to enter your basement through cracks in the foundation, potentially causing flooding and other costly damage.

Water damage isn’t limited to your basement or crawl space. Extreme downpours on a roof that has soft spots or damaged shingles can create moisture damage in your attic, ceiling, and walls, leading to stains and mold growth. Water damage occurs gradually over time with dry and wet seasons.

How Much Rain Falls on Your Home

calculating rainfall accumulation on a single-family homeainfall-chart-AFS.png

On average, the precipitation in Alabama is 56 inches annually. Parts of Alabama can get major downpours, causing significant flooding problems. To calculate how much rainfall a single-family home gets, we’ll use the example above based on a 1,600-square-foot home. 

  • 1” of rain amounts to 997 gallons of water
  • 5” of rain amounts to 4,984 gallons of water
  • 12” of rain amounts to 11,962 gallons of water

The first catchment area for rainwater is the roof. If the roof is equipped with gutters, the water should collect in the gutters and flow through the downspouts away from the home’s foundation. This design has a separate cosmetic function to keep water-streaming stains off the walls.

Ideally, a homeowner would need to maintain and clean the gutters after each major downpour or at least twice a year. If the gutters get clogged, or the home lacks a gutter system, repair costs for water damage can increase considerably.

The High Cost of Water Damage and Repairs

The most economical way to protect your home is to take precautions and invest in water management before flooding occurs. Once water enters your home and pools in the basement or crawl space for any length of time, you could be looking at a range of steep repair costs. 

cost of water damage, repairs and flood cleanup
  • 1 inch of water in the home: $26,807
  • 1 foot of water in the home: $72,163 
  • Damaged foundation: $105,000

In addition to professional repair costs, consider how your insurance premiums may rise after the damage is done. 

Optimize Your Property’s Water Management

​​Before major repairs are required, arm your home with gutters and adequate water management essentials. 

  • Rain gutters and downspouts
  • Waterproofing
  • Rain harvesting systems
  • Landscape grading

Interior drainage systems and sump pumps are exceptional for removing water from your basement or crawl space. If you live near the coast, you may experience excess rain. Minimize tidal floods and coastal flooding with proper landscape grading and runoff systems that reroute the water away from the property. When these unfortunate events happen, you’ll need to be prepared with tools geared for indoor water control. 

As a homeowner, you expect to build equity and keep your property in tip-top shape or improve it to raise the value of your home. Investing in your property can start from the outside. Survey your landscape to make sure water is being diverted to plants that reside away from the foundation. Is your home on a slope? A slight slope is ideal for optimal drainage. Waterproofing your basement or crawl space will not only save you loads of time for cleanup but more money in the long run. 

Hiring professionals to break down the cost of materials and properly install gutter systems is a great first step in investing in your home.

Since global sea levels are rising and climate change is affecting the intensity and frequency of rainfall, now is the time to take action and prevent or reduce rain runoff and water from entering your home. 

For a free inspection and stellar service, contact our waterproofing specialists and foundation experts

Publish Date:

Last Modified Date:

AFS Service Areas

Our Locations

Birmingham AL

130 Interstate Commerce Crt. Bldg. 100 & 200
Alabaster, AL 35007

Chattanooga TN

214 Industrial Park Dr.
Soddy-Daisy, TN 37379

Columbus GA

2701 Opelika Road
Phenix City, AL 36870

Dothan AL

1909 Montgomery Hwy, Suite 322,
Dothan, AL 36303

Florence AL

118 E Mobile St
Florence, AL 35630

Huntsville AL

2415 Jordan Road
Huntsville, AL 35811

Knoxville TN

3028 E Governor John Sevier Highway
Knoxville, TN 37914

Louisville KY

1904 Watterson Trail, Suite 130
Louisville, KY 40299

Mobile AL / Biloxi MS

3131 Hamilton Blvd.
Theodore, AL 36582

Montgomery AL

445 Dexter Avenue, Suite 4050
Montgomery, AL 36104

Nashville TN

1519 Heil Quaker Blvd.
LaVergne, TN 37086

Pensacola FL

89 W. Hood Dr.
Pensacola, FL 32534