Rain Gutters are really important because – although they are simple and relatively inexpensive – they protect more valuable home components, like the roof, foundation and windows. Taking care of and cleaning gutters is an easy way to protect your home from major damages.
And it’s really much simpler than you probably think.
Finding a leaking gutter early can protect your entire house. In this blog post, we’ve provided a few signs that you can be on the lookout for (without calling a roof specialist) to determine if you have a gutter leaking.
How to Identify a Gutter Leak
There are several signs that indicate leaking gutters, even if you don’t actually notice water dripping. You can do an inspection from the ground to determine if the signs of a leaking gutter are there.
Here’s what to keep an eye out for:
Visible Flaws – When the gutters pull away from the roof, it causes stress on the connections. Cracks can be caused by poor installation, poor quality materials, damage or age. Cracks in the gutter channel or seeing any part of them pulling away from the roofing might not cause a leak yet, but will definitely cause issues. Getting these defects fixed is much more affordable than installing new gutters or any of the possible damages a leak can lead to.
Pooling Water – If rain is pooling around your home, it’s a sign that a gutter leak is present. You should also check underground pipes, water spigots and any other water source that is near your home, just to be careful.
Pooling water near your house can be especially damaging for the foundation. It’s also bad for landscaping and could cause your windows to leak.
Dripping – One of the most visible signs of a gutter leak is a drip, or several drips.
A drip from your rain gutter indicates a clog, but if it’s coming from the bottom of the gutter and it isn’t overflowing, there is a hidden leak. These minor leaks can occur if a fastener has become loose (see the next item on our list).
Visible Fasteners – Finding nails and screws wiggling their way out of the rain gutters likely means a leak will begin soon, if it hasn’t already. The hole where the nail or screw fits in becomes a new area where water can escape if the fastener works its way out.
Sometimes the answer is as easy as refastening them, but it could also be important to seal the hole so no more water can escape from around the screw or the nail, even after it is tightened again. You can buy this type of sealant, or let a gutter repair company apply it.
Water Stains or Rust – Moisture leaves evidence behind, especially when it is consistently or frequently there. Dark water stains appear because dirt and other organic materials adhere to the wet surface better than on a drier one.
Rust is the result of constant moisture, and the more extreme sign you’ll see after water stains. Most water stains can be cleaned away and the gutters can be fixed, 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 tree limb fall on top of your roof, but you’re beginning to see paint flaking, cracking in the foundation or walkways, rotting wood on your patio or deck, or mold on your window sills, you might have leaking gutters.
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 of these factors should be taken into account when inspecting gutters for leaks.
Other gutter issues…
Not every gutter issue leads to major repairs. If you see these gutter issues, a gutter leak may not be the issue.
Rain Overflow – This issue is usually an easy fix. It’s probably not a leak, but a clog that should be cleaned out. You can do this yourself or hire a Cuyahoga Falls gutter cleaning service – even a general handyman – to clean them out.
Animal Nests – A bird, squirrel, chipmunk can quickly build a nest in your rain gutters or in your downspout, which will cause overflow. Once the nest has been there a while, you will start seeing some of the above signs of a leak in a gutter – like rust or pooling – 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 tree sapling will sprout strong roots that can destroy aluminum gutters before you know it.
Professional Gutter Repair
Any of these obvious signs mean there are problems with your gutter that need to be addressed right away. By checking your gutters and downspouts, you can tell if there’s a cause for concern.
This is when a professional gutter service in Cuyahoga Falls can be helpful. They can determine if gutter replacement is required or if you can get by with repairs to extend the life of your gutters. Sometimes, basic gutter cleaning is the only thing that’s needed.
Some homeowners choose to do simple gutter care, like gutter cleaning, themselves. Although it can be time consuming and dangerous, they are ready to complete the project a couple of times each year to save some money.
However, anything beyond simple gutter cleaning is best left to the professionals.
Start by hiring a gutter service with good customer reviews like CF Gutters Inc.. Then let us do an inspection to correctly diagnose the issue. We offer free inspections for potential customers.
If there are gutter repairs to be made, or if we think that it’s time for gutter replacement, you can count on us to get the job done right. Our gutter repair service can save you a lot of time and trouble in the long run!