Many homeowners overlook regular gutter maintenance as they seem less critical. But this isn’t true, as gutters play a vital role in safeguarding your home’s structural integrity. Gutters do this by channeling water away from your home’s basement and foundation. This saves you from incurring expensive expenses due to damage to your home’s foundation.
Gutters also help protect the roof from damage by directing away the water collected on your property. With so many crucial roles, you must ensure the gutters are in the best shape possible.
But because gutters get exposed to harsh weather elements, they’re more susceptible to damage. And to ensure they’re free of sags or leaks, you must be fast in looking for possible issues with your gutters. Here’s a close-up look at some common gutter problems and how to fix them.
1. Clogged Gutters
A constant accumulation of sand, sticks, leaves, trash, debris, and dirt in the gutters is a common problem. This usually happens because most homeowners don’t have Shurflo gutters guards or fail to clean the gutters regularly. During the rainy season, the clog in the gutters prevents rainwater from passing through. Doing this forces water to overflow and stream down your house.
If left unchecked, it’ll end up causing the gutters to sag and detach from the fascia. This is before factoring in how excess water flow causes severe damage to interior walls, foundations, and ceilings.
2. Solution: Debris Removal
You can deal with the clogging issue by removing the accumulated dirt or debris. The accessories you need to get the job done include:
- A ladder
- Compressed air
- Pressure washer
While the ladder comes in handy in helping you reach the roof’s height, you must keep it from placing it over the gutter. Otherwise, this could destroy the gutter and lead to more unwanted issues.
If you want a long-term gutter, hire a professional contractor to clean your gutters. And while doing this, they’ll add gutter protection to prevent debris from entering the gutter system.
You can also deal with the issue of clogged gutters by carrying out routine maintenance. This will ensure it’s free of any debris and prevent a possible water damage issue. Having a seasonal maintenance schedule will help you best prevent any clog buildup.
3. Sagging Gutters
Certain sections of the gutter system can start to sag either due to deuteriation or harsh weather elements. This makes the gutter fail to do its job of draining water from the roof and away from the home’s foundation. It also creates spots on the gutters where rainwater and debris can accumulate. Doing this adds stress to the gutters and can lead to the collapse of the entire system.
The stagnant water in the gutters will start to cause wood rotting and corrosion. It can also cause the gutter system to collapse due to excessive pressure on the brackets. This can cause damage to your home’s roofing and siding.
4. Solution: Replace The Gutter Hanger
The best way to deal with the issue of sagging gutters is by fastening the screws across the entire system. You only need to buy a few pieces of hardware to screw back the hanging sections of the gutter. But in cases of more extensive damage, you’ll have to replace the entire gutter system.
5. Leaking Gutters
Leaking gutters is a prevalent issue you’ll most likely experience more so after a heavy storm. These leaks arise due to debris on the gutters, creating puncture holes. Gutters are also exposed to extreme weather conditions over the years, which makes cracks or holes.
If the holes are left unchecked, water will pass through the cracks in the gutters and start accumulating around the foundation of your home. This, over time, causes structural issues due to damage to the underlying foundation. Other problems from leaking gutters include hardware failure and gutter erosion.
6. Solution: Gutter Hole Repair
Repairing leaking gutters is a breeze and something you can do by yourself. The tools you need to get the job done include:
- Putty knife
- Flashing scraps
- Plastic roofing cement or waterproof gutter sealant or
Using the putty knife, you can easily cover the holes in the gutter system. You should follow this same procedure when covering bigger holes, but you also need a flashing strip. This ensures you’ve sealed the gutter leak.
7. Improper Gutter Slope
Gutters must always be in suitable sloping positions to ensure proper water drainage. The industry standard angle for positioning gutters is set at least one-quarter for every 10 feet of the gutter. Otherwise, this interferes with the direction in which water is flowing. This leads to unwanted issues such as leaking, clogging, and sagging.
For gutters that are 40 feet or longer, you should pitch right at the center to two different drainage spouts.
Solution: Rehang the Gutters
Gutters that aren’t well-pitched are easy to pinpoint. But before you repair the gutters, first get the necessary tools for the job, including:
- Tape measure
With these tools in hand, start by remeasuring the pitch. You can do this by yourself, but it’s advisable to get help from someone more skilled in addressing the issue of an improper gutter slope. Hiring a professional contractor is advised if you have difficulty correcting the gutter slope.
When fixing the improperly fixed gutters, start by measuring the distance between the peak and the downspout. After that, find out the spots where the gutter isn’t aligned well in the proper position. Follow this up by bending and fastening the gutters into the correct position.
It would help if you were proactive to quickly address gutter issues before it causes more damage to your home. This is why it’s advisable to carry out regular gutter maintenance to detect possible problems in good time. If left unchecked, these issues can quickly deteriorate and cause unimaginable damage to your home.
Luckily, that doesn’t necessarily have to be the case when fixing gutter issues in advance. This guide has helped with that by elaborating on the most common gutter issues and the best ways to fix them. Doing this ensures they’re in the best shape possible to protect both your home and roof from damage.