The Problems Birds Can Cause: Clogged Gutters, Roof Damage & More

Birds may be beautiful, but did you know that they may be damaging your home? As peaceful as it may seem to watch them at the bird feeder, where these creatures decide to nest and spend most of their time may actually be impacting your roof, chimney and gutter system. And if left alone, your feathered friends could cost you a lot in repairs.

Clogged gutters
Each year, birds nesting within gutter and drainage systems cause a number of unexpected roof repairs for homeowners.

How can these little creatures cause such big damage? There are few reasons birds setting up home in your yard may cause your house some unexpected repairs:

  • Roof damage: According to, birds often build their nests in your rain gutters, drains and corners of your roofs where these drains are found. The presence of a nest stops the correct flow of the water and causes backs ups, which in turn can damage your roof and the integrity of the wooden structure beneath the shingles. Blockage that causes water to flow against the house can cause further damage to the structure and eventual rot. The bird droppings, because of their high acidic nature, can also affect the life of your roof and lead to leaks.
Clogged gutters
Bird nests in your rain gutters can cause you big repair headaches.
  • Chimney blockage: Bird nests built in chimneys and ventilation systems are extremely dangerous because it can spread diseases through a ventilation system and also block proper air-flow. A blocked chimney or ventilation system, without reasonable air-flow, can back carbon monoxide into the home, which is life-threatening.
  • Gutter damage and beyond: If birds have built nests in your gutter system a back-up of standing water can occur, bringing weight, sagging and damage to the entire system, the part of the structure it is attached to, your siding, and foundation. The trapped, overflowing water can serve as a breeding ground for pests, like mosquitoes and other insects.

What are the best solutions?

There are a number of things you can do to protect your home and still be kind to these feathered friends. The first is doing a thorough gutter cleaning, but it is not a fun or easy task. In fact, each year there are reported injuries from homeowners falling off of ladders. Birds can also build a nest soon after you have cleaned out the gutters, so it is wiser to find ways to actually deter bird activity and perhaps eliminate gutter cleaning chores.

  • There are specially designed gutter guard systems that keep birds, leaves and debris out of your gutters. They offer a lifetime of protection for your home and stop you from having to climb that ladder for gutter cleaning.
  • According to, hanging plastic owls from the eaves of a house will generally frighten off woodpeckers and other birds, but the result is usually short-lived. Birds then acclimate to the seeing the owl in the same exact place every single day and become trusting that it does not move.
  • Hanging things like a windsock, a flag, or anything that will move in the breeze deters birds from settling in and calling your house their new home.
  • There are stainless steel bird spikes you can install to prevent birds from moving into your chimney. Essentially they prevent birds from landing there and therefore they cannot build a nest. The spikes come in several widths and are easy to install and a single strip of spikes covers an entire chimney.

Protecting your roof, chimney and gutters from the damage caused by birds can save you the cost and headache of numerous repairs. To learn more about ways to prevent nesting in your gutter system, call 1-800-975-6666.

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