Winter months bring extreme temperatures, snow, and ice. These are all elements that can cause gutters to freeze and stop the flow of water. This can result in an overflow of the gutters and ice forming from the edges of the gutters. This extra weight can damage the gutters and roof, which will end in costly repairs for the homeowner.
How do I keep my gutter guards from freezing
If you live in an area of extreme temperatures, then you run the risk that the gutters will freeze. Thankfully, there are things that you can do to avoid the gutters from freezing.
Install heat panels – Panels that lay within the gutter with wires or heating elements that will heat and melt any snow or ice that is in the gutter.
Keep gutter clean – The cleaner the gutter, the easier it is for water to drain. Without water in the gutter, the gutter will not freeze.
Insulate roof and attic – Insulation in the roof will cause snow and ice to melt and run off the roof and through the gutter.
However, there are some tips that homeowners should not do to remove ice from the gutters.
Hammer down ice – This can damage the gutter and cause leaks
Thaw out gutters – Using heat to the gutter will not eliminate the problem areas and they will return
Applying salt or other chemicals – These elements will corrode and rust the gutters which will cause leaks and in need of replacement.
How do I protect my gutters from snow and ice
The best way to protect your gutters from snow and ice is to keep them cleaned out and clear of dirt and debris. Cleaning the gutters in late fall will give the gutters the best chance to flow water throughout the gutters and into the downspouts.
Another alternative to protecting your gutters is to install a gutter guard for snow and ice. A sloped micro-mesh or sloped-designed gutter guard is best. This design will all large chunks of snow and ice to fall from the roof and never enter the gutter.
Are gutter guards good for snow and ice
Depending on the design of the gutter guards, this may not be an ideal solution for the winter months. Most gutter guards, like foam gutter guards, are not ideal in winter. They will collect the snow and ice on top of the guard. This will block water from entering the gutter. This will result in water flowing into the basement, down the sides of the home toward the foundation, and can cause soil erosion.
What is the best gutter guard for cold weather
The best gutter guard for cold weather is one that will deter ice and snow from building up and collecting in the gutter. Research of consumer reports shows that gutter guards made from micro-mesh panels are very durable in the conditions that the winter months have in store. Homeowners will also need to look for gutter guards that are made from a long-lasting material like aluminium or steel. These materials will not rust or deteriorate at a rapid rate like other gutters. Finally, gutters without guards in place run a greater risk of becoming full of debris. This can cause snow and ice to become stuck in the gutters and can result in costly repairs.
There are many steps that a homeowner can take to prevent ice, snow, and extreme temperatures from affecting the performance of their guttering. Making it a priority to avoid these pitfalls will save the homeowner in the long run.
When was the last time you cleaned your gutters? If you can’t remember, you’re not alone. Many homeowners turn a blind eye to their gutter system until something happens. Clogged or damaged gutters are often the culprits of water damage, wood rot, and structural issues.
If you’re left wringing your hands about your gutter cleaning routine, don’t worry. We’re going to set the record straight about the importance of clean gutters and how you can avoid the most common gutter-cleaning mistakes.
Why Regular Gutter Cleaning Is Important
If you don’t clean your bathroom, problems are bound to happen. The same goes for your gutter system. Leaves, debris, sludge, and other junk will build up in your gutters, causing blockages and overflows. Not only does this cause mold problems, but it can completely wreck your home’s foundation.
Get rid of debris, and keep your gutters flowing in the right direction all year long when you make an appointment with The Gutters Guy.
Leaves and sticks in gutter
The Gutter Cleaning Mistakes Homeowners Should Avoid
As a homeowner, you have a never-ending task list on your plate. gardening work, laundry, dishes, and yes, gutter cleaning. Check out the most common gutter cleaning mistakes you should avoid to prevent issues like water damage and structural problems.
Skipping Gutter Cleanings
Most homeowners are guilty of this one. We recommend you clean your gutters at least once a year. most homeowners fail to clean their gutters once a year. Skipping cleanings will lead to debris build-up and blockages.
Cleaning Gutters at the Wrong Times
Striking while the iron’s hot pays off. Planning to clean your gutters ahead of time ensures your gutters are ready to tackle all sorts of weather conditions without the risk of damage or clogs. Contact us to schedule a gutter cleaning appointment.
Not Having a Gutter Maintenance Schedule
Failing to adhere to a gutter cleaning schedule only hurts your gutters in the long run. Plus, if too much moisture builds up in your gutters, problems like mold growth and insect infestations will likely arise. The best solution? Scheduling regular cleanings with The Gutters Guy.
Not Wearing Safety Gear
If you’re doing some DIY gutter cleaning, you should always wear the proper safety gear. Not wearing protective gear like gloves and eyewear leaves your hands and eyes susceptible to injuries, pest bites, and more.
Using Incorrect Tools
Using the wrong tools can damage your gutters and cause you to injure yourself. For example, standing on the wrong-sized ladder can lead to dangerous falls, landing you in the ER. It’s also important to note that equipment like leaf blowers should not be used when cleaning gutters.
You’ve checked your gutters, but what about your downpipes? Downpipes are responsible for draining water off your property. If your downpipes are misplaced, your property is at risk of accumulating excessive amounts of water.
Doing Work Alone
Working on your gutters alone is dangerous. Always have an extra person handy, should something go wrong.
The Dangers of DIY Gutter Cleaning & Gutter Cleaning Safety
You know what not to do. Now let’s take a look at the dangers of DIY gutter cleaning.
The Gutters Guy urges every homeowner to avoid DIY gutter cleaning for this reason. Injuries are all too common when it comes to DIY gutter cleans. Many homeowners find themselves seriously injured due to dizziness or cuts from sharp objects.
Cleaning During Inclement Weather
Watching your gutters overflow during a storm is annoying, but you should avoid cleaning them during bad weather. Everything becomes slippery during storms, which increases your chances of falling and severely hurting yourself. Play it safe and wait for a sunny day.
Animals love dirty gutters. Mice, birds, and other small animals may call your gutters home without you even knowing. Be extra cautious when cleaning your gutters, keeping an eye out for nesting birds, squirrels, mice, and insects.
Gutter muck boasts a ton of bacteria. If you’re not wearing gloves, you could end up with a disease due to bacteria coming in contact with your skin. Burrowing animals will also likely make your gutters their bathroom. Any amount of animal feces can carry diseases, so prevent the risks and wear proper gear.
If you’re not an experienced DIY gutter cleaner, the risk of damaging your gutters increases. Inexperienced homeowners can puncture their gutters, causing them to leak and crack over time.
Your version of “clean” might not be what your gutters need. Gutters should be free from debris in order for water to flow properly. Missing areas of debris will eventually lead to blockages and malfunctions.
Not Inspecting Gutters
Gutters should always be inspected to ensure everything is working correctly. Failing to inspect your gutters could lead to some serious consequences, like damaged fascia.
Why Leaving Gutter Cleaning to the Professionals Is Important
Despite your best efforts and knowing what gutter cleaning mistakes to avoid, it’s best to leave gutter cleaning to the professionals. The Gutters Guy utilises the latest technology and proven techniques to clean your gutters safely. Wipe out any chance of water damage or mould growth, and contact us for gutter cleaning in your area.
Summer is here, and while you may be focused on enjoying the sunshine and warm weather, you shouldn’t put your gutter system on the back burner. Getting your gutters cleaned during the summer might not be at the top of your to-do list, but it’s a task that shouldn’t be overlooked. In fact, summer is one of the best times to clean your gutters.
7 Reasons to Get Your Gutters Cleaned in Summer
Not sure when to clean your gutters? dependant on environment You should be getting your gutters cleaned at least once a year. Schedule a few gutter cleaning services this summer with The Gutters Guy. Here’s why you should let us give your gutters a summer cleaning:
Summer isn’t always sunny. Ensuring that your gutter system is clean and ready for the occasional downpour helps channel rainwater away from your home. If your gutter system develops a clog, overflowing water can quickly collect at the base of your home.
The warm summer months often attract wildlife, including birds, squirrels, and insects. Unfortunately, these critters may deem your gutters a cozy nesting spot. Cleaning your gutters removes debris and nests, effectively preventing animals from dropping anchor in your gutter system.
Summer heat combined with rain creates the ideal environment for mould and mildew. Clogged gutters that retain water can contribute to mould growth, creating a rather smelly situation outside your home. Regular gutter cleaning reduces the risk of mould and harmful bacteria.
Prepping For Autumn
It’s never too early to get a head start on Autumn. Cleaning your gutters in the summer helps prevent blockages during the Autumn when leaves and other debris start to drop. By getting ahead of the game, you’ll ensure your gutters are ready for the inevitable Autumn foliage.
Proper Water Flow
Your gutters should always be able to channel water away from your home, no matter the season. If your gutters are clogged with leaves, dirt, and other debris, they won’t be able to perform well. Cleaning your gutters at least once a year guarantees proper water flow, preventing any potential damages down the line.
The last thing you want to discover is an infestation. Clogged gutters are a magnet for pests like mosquitoes, termites, and ants. By keeping your gutters clean, you’ll ward off these unwanted guests and help protect your home from infestations.
Avoid Water Damage
Perhaps the most critical reason to get your gutters cleaned in the summer is to avoid costly water damage. From structural damage to rotting wood, water can wreak havoc inside and outside your home. Be proactive with your gutters by calling the gutter cleaners you can trust.
Why Choose The Gutters Guy?
When it comes to gutter cleaning, you want a professional who knows their way around your gutter system.
That’s why we’re here. We’ve been cleaning, installing, and repairing gutters since 2005. Our technicians use the latest equipment to remove clogs and other debris from your gutters, down pipes, and drains. When you hire us, you can count on a job well done.
We’re Your Go-to Summer Gutter Cleaners
Don’t let your gutters suffer this summer. Prioritise your gutter system by ensuring they get the attention they need from The Gutters Guy. Schedule a professional gutter cleaning service with The Gutters Guy your professional, reliable summer gutter cleaners.
Blocked gutters are not just an eyesore but can also cause significant damage to your home if left unattended. Water damage from blocked gutters can cause structural damage to your home, health hazards for your family, and costly repairs. In this post, we will discuss the different ways that blocked gutters can damage your home and how they can lead to water damage. We will also highlight the signs of blocked gutters to help you identify when it’s time for a clean-up. Lastly, we have included tips on how to clean blocked gutters yourself or why hiring a professional gutter cleaning service is beneficial. Don’t let blocked gutters put your home at risk, read on to find out more!
What is Water Damage from Blocked Gutters?
Water damage from blocked gutters can be a serious problem for homeowners. When gutters become blocked with debris such as leaves, twigs, and dirt, water cannot flow freely through them. As a result, water may overflow from the gutters and seep into your home’s foundation, causing significant damage that can be costly to repair. Additionally, overflowing gutters can lead to water pooling around your home, which can attract pests and cause mold growth. Regular gutter maintenance and cleaning are essential to prevent potential water damage and prolong the lifespan of your home’s exterior.
Explanation of Water Damage
When water cannot drain properly due to blocked gutters, it can lead to a multitude of issues. Water damage caused by overflowing gutters can result in mold growth, rotting wood, and foundation damage. The excess water may seep into the walls and ceilings of your home, causing unsightly stains and structural damage. Additionally, water damage can lead to health problems for you and your family, such as respiratory issues from mold exposure. Regularly cleaning your gutters is vital in preventing water damage and extending the life of your home’s roof and foundation.
How Blocked Gutters Lead to Water Damage
Blocked gutters can cause extensive water damage to your home’s structure and foundation. Water overflow due to blocked gutters can lead to pooling around the foundation, which may cause structural damage. Additionally, excess water seeping into your walls and roof can cause rotting wood and mould growth, posing health hazards. In colder climates, ice dams caused by blocked gutters increase the risk of roof damage and leaks. Regular maintenance and cleaning of your gutters are necessary to prevent such issues and prolong the lifespan of your home’s exterior.
Signs of Blocked Gutters
Overflowing water from blocked gutters not only causes damage to your home, but can also create a breeding ground for pests such as mosquitoes, rodents, and birds. Mosquitoes require standing water to breed, which is the perfect environment created by clogged gutters. Similarly, nests built by rodents and birds can obstruct the flow of water causing more problems. Regular maintenance and cleaning of your gutters are crucial in preventing pest infestations and avoiding the cost of extermination services.
Insects and Pests
Blocked gutters can be a breeding ground for various insects and pests that can cause harm to your health and property. Mosquitoes are attracted to standing water, which can accumulate in blocked gutters, increasing the risk of diseases such as the West Nile virus and Zika virus. Termites are also attracted to moist wood and can cause significant damage to your home’s foundation and structure. Rodents can use blocked gutters as a pathway into your home, bringing with them the risk of disease and damage to your property. Regular maintenance of gutters is crucial in preventing these issues.
Stains Inside and Out
Water stains inside and outside your home can be a sign of blocked gutters. Overflowing water from gutters due to debris buildup can seep into the walls, causing water stains and rotting wood. Exterior stains caused by overflowing gutters can damage your siding or foundation. Regular cleaning and maintenance of your gutters can prevent these issues and save you from costly repairs in the future. Don’t wait until it’s too late; schedule regular gutter cleaning to avoid structural damage to your home.
Sagging and Damaged Gutters
Blocked gutters can cause serious damage to your home and its foundation. One of the most common signs of blocked gutters is sagging and damaged gutters. When water overflows from blocked gutters, it can lead to damage to your gutter system, causing it to sag or become misaligned. This further leads to water seepage into the walls, roof line, and foundation of your home, causing additional structural damage. Regular cleaning and maintenance of your gutter system can prevent this issue, saving you from costly repairs in the future.
Plants Growing in Your Gutters
Plants growing in your gutters can lead to disastrous consequences for your home. They act as a fertile soil, trapping moisture against your roof, walls, and foundation. If left unattended, it can result in rotting wood and structural damage. Additionally, the presence of plants attracts insects and pests that carry diseases. Regular cleaning and maintenance of gutters can prevent these problems from occurring, saving you from costly repairs in the future. Don’t let your gutters become a garden; instead, take care of them to protect your home’s integrity.
Got Gutter plants! contact The Gutters Guy
The Dangers of Water Damage from Blocked Gutters
Structural damage, health hazards, and high costs are some of the dangers associated with water damage from blocked gutters. The weight of debris and standing water can damage the roof while overflowing water can cause soil erosion and foundation damage. Stagnant water in blocked gutters can attract insects such as mosquitoes and lead to pest infestation. Dampness caused by blocked gutters can also result in mold growth, posing health risks to occupants. Regular cleaning and maintenance of gutters can prevent these costly damages to your home.
Structural Damage to Your Home
Blocked gutters can lead to structural damage, causing cracks and weakening the foundation of your home. Moisture due to water damage can seep into walls and ceilings, resulting in mold growth and further structural damage. Regular cleaning and maintenance of gutters can prevent these issues and save you from costly repairs in the future. Ignoring blocked gutters can also lead to pest infestations, as stagnant water is a breeding ground for insects like mosquitoes. Don’t let blocked gutters damage your home; take preventative measures today.
Health Hazards to Your Family
The health hazards caused by blocked gutters cannot be understated. The growth of mold and mildew due to dampness can trigger allergies and respiratory problems in your family, posing a significant risk to their health. Moreover, standing water in blocked gutters can attract mosquitoes and other pests that carry diseases, compounding the problem further. Regular gutter cleaning and maintenance can prevent these health hazards and protect your home from structural damage caused by excess water seeping into the foundation.
Cost Breakdown of Water Damage
Water damage caused by blocked gutters can add up quickly and become quite expensive. The costs associated with water damage include cleanup, repair, or replacement of damaged materials and potential mold remediation. In addition, ignoring blocked gutters can put the structural integrity of your home at risk, leading to even more costly repairs down the line. Preventing blocked gutters through regular cleaning or installing gutter guards is a cost-effective way to avoid these expenses and protect your property’s value in the long run.
Don’t leave it to long contact The Gutters Guy
How to Clean Blocked Gutters
Maintaining clean gutters is crucial for preventing water damage to your home. To ensure that your gutters are free from debris, use a ladder to safely access them and remove any buildup by hand or with a scoop. Once the debris has been removed, flush the gutters with water to clear out any remaining dirt or leaves. Consider installing gutter guards to prevent future clogs and save time on cleaning. Regularly cleaning your gutters will protect your home’s foundation, roof, and siding from water damage caused by overflowing gutters. If you are unable to do it yourself or have a multi-story home, consider hiring a professional gutter cleaning service for expert assistance.
DIY Gutter Cleaning Tips
Regular maintenance of gutters is crucial to prevent costly water damage from blocked gutters. Cleaning your gutters yourself can save you money, but safety should be a top priority. Use sturdy ladders and protective gear like gloves and eyewear to avoid injury. Start by removing larger debris with a trowel or scoop, then flush the gutter with a hose to remove smaller particles. Installing gutter guards or screens can prevent future clogs, which will also keep your gutters clean for longer periods. By keeping your gutters clear of debris, you’ll avoid expensive repairs and ensure your home’s structural integrity remains intact.
Benefits of Hiring a Professional Gutter Cleaning Service
When it comes to keeping your gutters clean, hiring a professional gutter cleaning service can be a wise investment. Not only do they have the expertise and equipment to safely and effectively clean your gutters, but they also offer additional benefits such as inspections, repairs, and maintenance to ensure your gutters are functioning properly. By preventing costly damage caused by clogged gutters, hiring a professional service can save you time and money in the long run. Don’t risk injury or damage to your home – leave the job to the professionals!
Blocked gutters can lead to significant water damage, which can cause structural damage to your home, pose health hazards to your family, and incur high costs in repairs. Some of the signs of blocked gutters include insects and pests, stains inside and out, sagging and damaged gutters, and plants growing in your gutters. It is important to clean your gutters regularly to prevent water damage from occurring. This can be done through DIY gutter cleaning tips or by hiring a professional gutter cleaning service from The Gutters Guy
Your gutters play a crucial role in protecting your home from water damage. At TGG, we understand the importance of regular gutter maintenance and offer top-notch professional gutter cleaning services.
Here are five great benefits of having your gutters cleaned by our expert at TGG.
1. Expert Pest and Rodent Control
Unclean gutters can become a breeding ground for pests and rodents, which can eventually make their way into your home. By choosing The Gutters Guy for professional gutter cleaning, you can prevent insects, rodents, and other critters from infesting your gutters and causing problems in your home.
2. Preserve Your Warranty
Many warranties, whether for a new home or a recent roof repair, require proper gutter maintenance. Neglecting to clean your gutters can void these warranties, leaving you to cover repair costs. Our gutter cleaning services will help ensure your warranty remains valid, and we’ll provide proof of service in case you need it for any disputes.
3. Prevent Ice Dams
In colder climates, ice dams can form along the edges of your roof or gutters, causing water to pool and eventually seep into your home. Our gutter cleaning services help prevent ice dams by ensuring that your gutters can properly channel water away from your home.
4. Protect Your Landscape
Overflowing gutters can damage your landscape by overwatering your plants. Our professional gutter cleaning will prevent clogged gutters and protect your landscaping, keeping it healthy and attractive.
5. Save Money and Reduce the Risk of Water Damage
A well-maintained gutter system helps protect your home’s siding, roof, and foundation from water damage. By choosing The Gutters Guy for professional gutter cleaning, you can avoid expensive repairs like basement flooding, roof replacement, and foundation damage. Regular gutter maintenance can save you money in the long run by preventing these costly problems.
6. Piece of mind
With our service you not only have your gutters cleared you get repairs, down pipes cleared, a roof and gutter survey with photos plus before & after photos of gutter clear. That’s not all we do at The Gutters Guy check out our services here
Investing in professional gutter cleaning by Ned Stevens is a smart way to protect your home and save money on potential repairs. Contact us today for a free gutter cleaning or installation quote, and enjoy the peace of mind that comes with a well-maintained gutter system.
In many parts of the country, gutter cleaning is something that must be done several times per year. Here, in the southeast, our four seasons each year make for four or more gutter cleaning seasons too!
Since each season has its own weather and flora changes, your home’s gutters act as defenders throughout the year against the rain, ice, pollen, leaves, and summer storm debris. And, since each season experiences different assaults against your gutter system, it is important to keep your gutters clean throughout the year.
Let’s dive into what you need to know about gutter cleaning during different seasons.
Gutter cleaning during winter season During the winter months, southeast properties experience wind, snow, sleet, and ice. Wind can create debris build-up in your gutter system from falling tree twigs and remaining leaves.
The other wintry mix elements have the potential to create hazardous ice dams if melting water is unable to completely run off of your roof and down through your gutter system and downspouts.
Nasty ice dams are formed when melting water running off of your roof refreezes before reaching your gutter and flowing away. The frozen water forms icicles that hang off of your gutter as well as large sections of ice that collect above your gutter, along the edge of your roof. Falling icicles and the freezing water that expands under your shingles, are two of the potential hazards that can hurt you and the integrity of your home.
Winter gutter cleaning requires specialised expertise and the ability to safely scale a ladder to remove ice dams and any tree or other debris that may be clogged in the gutters or downspouts. For second story homes, this is a particularly dangerous time of year. Hiring The Gutters Guy for your winter gutter cleaning is the safest solution.
End of winter season gutter cleaning At the end of winter and before the spring pollen season begins, another inspection and cleaning of your gutters may be needed. Assuming that you no longer have any ice damming or other obvious debris buildup, complete a visual inspection of your gutter system looking for any cracks, breaks, or areas where the gutter system may be loose or coming unattached from your roof and home.
Since water freezes in frigid temperatures, any trapped expanding frozen water inside your gutters or downspouts may create cracks and break points. If you see or suspect damage to your gutters, also inspect your roof near your gutters to locate any roof damage. Shingles that are raised up, cracked, or broken may indicate that frozen water expanded under your shingles. Melting water underneath shingles has a tendency to seep into your roof and into your attic. Identifying this potential problem before the upcoming spring rainy season will save you a much bigger headache and roof repair bill if caught early!
If you do see collected debris in your gutter system, now is the time to have it removed so that clogs don’t develop prior to the expected influx of spring rain. If you spot any cracks or breakages, be sure to handle your gutter repair as quickly as possible so that your roof and home are protected.
Gutter cleaning during spring season While most people commonly think of Autumn as the time to worry about gutter cleaning, the spring season is equally important when it comes to gutter maintenance for your home.
As winter subsides and the spring growing season commences, large amounts of pollen, tree blossoms, and final remnant leaves from the autumnal must be contended with. This is especially true for homes that have many trees around them. Since pollen is easily carried in the wind, even lower level plants and bushes can create pollen collections in your gutters.
For homes that have gutter guards, larger debris is typically not trapped but small debris such as pollen is. Pollen can become very obvious during the heavy pollen periods, showing up as a yellowy-green residue on your roof and gutters. While some of it will wash away during a rainfall, pollen has a tendency to collect and stick to surfaces so is best removed before it aids in the capture and collection of other types of debris such as dead bugs and small tree limbs.
Gutter cleaning for summer season Beware the summer storms!
The summer season is notorious for heavy thunder and lightning storms that come with a heavy dose of wind as well. With wind comes debris including twigs and larger tree limbs. Even the smallest storms can generate a fair amount of limb shrapnel – especially if you are lucky enough to have some beautiful birch trees in your area!
Besides the potential for roof damage, limbs and twigs can also create stains on your roof that are best cleaned via professional roof washing.
Tree limbs and twigs not only collect on your roof, but can end up in your gutters as well. In many cases, they are too large to safely follow through the gutter system and, unless they happen to fall off of your roof naturally, they can become trapped causing other summertime debris to collect and clog your gutters.
The other guilty parties for gutter clogs during the summer season are summer pollens, seasonal flower buds, insects, and bird nests. It is worth hiring a professional gutter cleaner, especially if you see or suspect any animal inhabitants within your gutter system. Professionals are used to handling these instances with care.
Gutter cleaning for the autumn season Finally, we come to gutter cleaning during the autumn season. Autumn is the most commonly associated with gutter cleaning – and for great reason! The autumn season produces the most debris caused by the falling leaves of deciduous trees. The sheer amount of leaves can be overwhelming for many – especially when having to rake one’s lawn. If you see many leaves on your lawn, you can expect that your roof and gutters have collected their share of leaves as well!
Along with leaves, the autumn season produces seed pods, needles, and acorns that can collect in your gutter system. The large amount of debris requires immediate attention for a number of reasons:
For some homes, the sheer weight of accumulated leaves and other debris can result in broken or loose gutters, requiring repair or replacement
Rotting leaves and debris that are left in gutters for too long can result in very messy gutter sludge that is difficult to clean and can create unsightly stains in your gutters
Animals, such as birds and squirrels, may take advantage of the collection of leaves and create nests in your gutters
Clogged gutters heading into winter can result in trapped snow and ice that create ice blocks and ice dams that may crack or dislocate your gutters as well as damage your roof
Accumulated leaves are unsightly, impacting the appearance of your home
Learn more about our recommended schedule for gutter cleaning during different seasons.