Rain Gutters are important because – although they are simple and inexpensive – they protect more valuable home assets, such as the roof, foundation and windows. Maintaining and cleaning gutters is an easy way to prevent your house from major damages.
And it’s a lot easier than you probably think.
Spotting a leaking gutter early can protect your entire home. Below, we’ve listed a few indicators that you can look for (without hiring a roofer) to see if your gutters may be leaking.
How to Identify Leaking Gutters
There are several warning signs that indicate a leaking gutter, even if you don’t see water dripping. You can do a visual inspection from the ground to decide if the signs of a gutter leak are there.
Here are some things to look for:
Obvious Flaws – When gutters begin to pull away from the roof, it causes stress on the fasteners. Cracks can be the result of poor installation, poor quality materials, damage or age. Cracks in the gutter or seeing any part of them pulling away from the roof might not cause a leak just yet, but will definitely create problems. Having these defects repaired is affordable than installing new gutters or any of the possible damages a leak can lead to.
Pooling – If water is pooling around your home, it’s a possible sign that a gutter leak is probably present. But you should also check underground pipes, water spigots and any other water source that is close to your house, just to be sure.
Pooling water by your house can be really damaging for the foundation. It’s also bad for landscaping and might cause your windows to leak.
Drips – One of the most visible signs of gutter leaks is a drip, or several of them.
A drip from your gutter indicates a clog, but if it’s coming from the bottom and it isn’t a big overflow, there is a hidden leak somewhere. These small leaks will occur if a fastener has become loose (see the next item on our list).
Visible Fasteners – Seeing nails and screws working their way out of the gutters means a leak is going to 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 starts to fall out.
Sometimes the solution is as easy as refastening them, but it may also be necessary to seal the hole so no water can leak from the edge of the screw or nail, even after it is tightened again. You can buy this sealant, or let a gutter repair company put it on.
Water Stains or Rust – Moisture leaves behind evidence, especially when it is constantly or frequently present. Darker water stains appear because dirt and other organic materials adhere to the moist surface better than it would a drier one.
Rust is the product of constant moisture, and the more severe sign you’ll notice after you see water stains. water stains on gutters can be cleaned away and the gutters can be repaired, but if your gutters are rusty, they will definitely have to be repaired or replaced.
Unexplained Home Damage – If there hasn’t been a severe storm, and you haven’t had a limb fall on your roof, but you’re beginning to see paint flaking, cracking in the foundation around the downspouts or walkways, rotting wood on your patio or deck, or mold on your window sills, you may have leaking gutters.
These are all signs 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 factored in when inspecting gutters for leaks.
Other gutter issues…
Not every gutter issue leads to home repairs. If you see these common gutter issues, a leak might not be the problem.
Rain Overflow – This issue is typically an easy fix. It’s probably not a gutter leak, but a clog that should be cleaned out. You can do this yourself or hire a Little Rock gutter cleaning service – even a general handyman – to clean them out.
Animal Nests – A small bird, squirrel, chipmunk or other pest can quickly build a nest in your gutters or downspout, which will cause overflow. Once the nest has been there for a little while, you will start seeing some of the above signs of leaks – like rust or puddling – if you don’t get rid of the nest.
Trees & Plants – A tree can take root in your rain gutter with little debris present. While it may be little now, a tree sapling will sprout strong roots that can destroy aluminum gutters before you even know it.
Professional Gutter Repair
Any of these visible signs mean there are issues with your rain gutter that have to be addressed right away. By checking your gutters and downspouts, you can tell if there’s a cause for concern.
This is where a professional gutter service in Little Rock can be helpful. They can determine if gutter replacement is necessary or if you can get by with repairs to extend the life of your home’s gutters. Sometimes, basic gutter cleaning is all that’s needed.
Homeowners can choose to do simple gutter care, like gutter cleaning, on their own. Although it it can be time consuming and somewhat dangerous, they are ready to take on the project 1-2 times a year to save some money.
However, any job beyond basic gutter cleaning should be left to the professionals.
Start by hiring a gutter service with good customer reviews like Little Rock Gutter Service. Then let us do an inspection to correctly determine the problem. We provide free inspections for potential customers.
If there are any 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 will save you a lot of time and trouble in the long run!