Rain Gutters are very important because – despite being simple and inexpensive – they protect valuable home components, such as the roof, foundation and windows. Caring for and cleaning rain gutters is an easy way to prevent your home from major damages.
And it’s really a lot simpler than you probably think.
Identifying a leaking gutter early can protect an entire home. In this blog post, we’ve provided a few signs that you can be on the lookout for (without calling a roofer) to see if there is a leak in your gutters.
How to Identify Leaking Gutters
There are several signs that indicate a leaking gutter, even if you don’t physically see water dripping. You can do a visual inspection from the ground to decide if the signs of a gutter leak are there.
Here’s what to look for:
Obvious Flaws – When the gutters pull away from the house, it stresses the connections. Cracks can be the result of faulty installation, low quality materials, storm damage or general wear and tear. Cracks in the gutter or seeing any part of them pulling away from the home may not cause a leak yet, but will definitely result in issues. Having these defects repaired is affordable than replacing gutters or any of the potential damages a leak can lead to.
Pooling Water – If rain is pooling around your house, it’s a sign that a gutter leak is probably present. But you should also check underground pipes, water spigots and any water source that is near your house, just to be sure.
Pooling water around your house can be really damaging for the foundation. It’s also bad for landscaping and could cause your windows to leak.
Drips – One of the most obvious signs of a gutter leak is a drip, or several drips.
A drip coming from your rain gutter is likely a clog, but if it’s coming from the bottom and it isn’t a big overflow, there is a hidden leak. These minor leaks will happen if a fastener has become loose (see the next item on our list).
Visible Fasteners – Finding nails and screws working their way out of the rain gutters means a leak is going to start soon, if it hasn’t already. The hole where the nail or screw fits in becomes a new area where water can get out if the fastener works its way out.
Sometimes the solution is as easy as refastening them, but it can also be important to cover the hole so no water can escape from the edge of the screw or the nail, even after it is back in place. You can buy this type of sealant, or let a gutter repair company apply it.
Water Stains or Rust – Water leaves behind evidence, especially when it is constantly or frequently there. Darker water stains will appear because dirt and other organic materials stick to the wet surface better than it would a drier one.
Rust is the product of nearly constant moisture, and the more severe sign you’ll see after water stains. Most water stains on gutters can be cleaned away and the gutters can be repaired, but if gutters are rusty, they definitely need to be repaired or replaced.
Unexplained Home Damage – If there hasn’t recently been a severe storm, and you haven’t had a limb fall on top of your roof, but you’re beginning to see paint flaking, cracking in the foundation around the downspouts or walkways, rotting wood on your porch or deck, or moldy window sills, you could have a gutter leak.
These are all indications that water has been leaking from a place it shouldn’t be. They also are related to older building materials, so all factors need to be factored in when inspecting gutters for leaks.
Other gutter issues…
Not all gutter issues lead to home repairs. If you see these gutter issues, a gutter leak might not be the problem.
Rain Overflow – This issue is usually an easy fix. It’s probably not a gutter leak, but a clog that has to be cleaned out. You can do this or hire a Fayetteville gutter cleaning service – even a general handyman – to clean out the gutters.
Animal Nests – A small bird, squirrel, chipmunk can quickly build a nest in your gutters or in your downspout, which can cause overflow. Once the nest has been there for a little while, you will start seeing some of the above signs of a leak in a gutter – like rust or puddling – if you don’t get rid of it.
Trees & Plants – A tree can take root in your gutter with minimal debris present. While it may be small now, a sapling will sprout really strong roots that can destroy aluminum gutters before you know it.
Professional Gutter Repair
Any of these visible signs indicate there are problems with your rain gutter that need to be addressed immediately. By quickly checking all of your gutters and downspouts, you can tell if there’s a reason for concern.
This is where a gutter service in Fayetteville can be helpful. They can distinguish if gutter replacement is required or if you can get by with repairs to extend the lifetime of your home’s gutters. Sometimes, gutter cleaning is the only thing that’s needed.
Homeowners can decide to do simple gutter care, such as gutter cleaning, themselves. Although it it can be time consuming and dangerous, they are eager to complete the project a couple of times each year to save some money.
However, any job beyond basic gutter cleaning should be left to the professionals.
Start by finding a gutter specialist with good customer reviews like Fayetteville Gutter Service. Then let us do an inspection to correctly determine the issue. We provide free inspections for new customers.
If there are gutter repairs to be made, or if we believe that it’s time for gutter replacement, you can count on us to get the job done right. Our gutter repair service will save you a lot of time and trouble in the long run!