If it weren’t for gutters and downspouts, rain water would splash off roofs, leading to soil erosion and stained siding. What’s more, by directing water away from foundations, windows, walls, and doors, gutters and downspouts keep homes dry, as well as water out of basements and crawl spaces.
That’s why homeowners should keep their gutters clean and working properly. If you’re a New Jersey homeowner, here are signs that your gutters may have problems, along with some common gutter repairs.
Signs of Damaged or Ineffective Gutters
Clues that gutters aren’t working correctly include:
- Mildew or pools of water around the foundation of a house.
- Paint that’s peeling around or on gutters.
- Orange flecks that suggest rust
- Cracks or splits on gutters—Even small cracks should be repaired as they can become large ones. By not repairing cracks you’re allowing water to cause further damage.
- Sagging gutters or gutters that have started pulling away from a house—If you see this, you can easily know that you need to fix or replace your gutters. It’s easy to note this problem as you can see it without having to climb a ladder.
- Water marks or water damage under a gutter can suggest that water is overflowing or leaking to escape a gutter. Ignoring this problem can cause damage to a fascia and soffit board.
Types of Gutter Repairs
- Hole patching is a common gutter repair job. There are several ways that gutters can develop holes, such as rust, fallen debris or simply harsh weather conditions.
- Repairing a leaky joint.
- Refastening sagging gutters.
- Replacing whole sections of a gutter that has been more severely damaged.
Safety Guidelines for Cleaning Clogged Gutters
Perhaps your gutters don’t need to be repaired, but they just need to be cleaned. In fact, clogged gutters are the problem that’s the most common of all gutter issues. If you leave them clogged with debris, they won’t be effective. Even worse, the extra weight of twigs, leaves and standing water can cause sagging, pulling the gutters from the fascia.
Always take safety precautions. Getting up on a ladder to evaluate and clean your gutters yourself can be very dangerous. Hiring a professional is highly recommended.
Considerations and Warnings
- Gutters should be inspected at least once annually.
- For water to flow correctly, gutters should be pitched in the direction of the downspout.
- A downspout could be clogged if gutter water fails to drain.
- For gutters that are chronically clogged, consider using gutter guards. You can choose from several types, including clip-on grates, mesh screens and porous foam.
- If your house doesn’t have a gutter system, think about installing one. The cost of a gutter system mainly depends on the type of material. Most homeowners have aluminum or steel gutters because of their durability. Vinyl gutters resist rot and rust, are easy to cut, and are cheaper, but they can become brittle in exceptionally cold weather and with age.
Don’t hesitate to call A1 Everlast to clean or repair your gutters. A1 serves Northern New Jersey homeowners and has a well-deserved reputation for excellence in service. Please contact us for gutter, roofing, chimney, masonry and siding services.