Rain Gutters are very important because – despite being simple and inexpensive – they protect more valuable home assets, like the roof, foundation and windows. Maintaining and cleaning gutters is an easy way to protect your home from major damages.
And it’s much easier than you probably think.
Finding a leak in your gutters early can protect the entire house. Here, we’ve listed a few indicators that you can be on the lookout for (without calling a roof specialist) to determine if there is a leak in your gutters.
How to Identify a Leaking Gutter
There are many signs that point to leaking gutters, even if you don’t actually notice water dripping. You can do a visual inspection from the lawn to determine if the signs of a gutter leak are there.
Here are some things to keep an eye out for:
Visible Flaws – When gutters start to pull away from the home, it stresses the connectors. Cracks can be caused by poor installation, poor quality materials, storm damage or age. Cracks in the gutter or seeing any part of them pulling away from the house might not be causing a leak just yet, but will certainly cause problems. Having these defects repaired is affordable than installing new gutters or any of the potential damages a leak can lead to.
Pooling – If rain is pooling around your house, it’s a sign that a gutter leak is probably present. You should also check pipes, water spigots and any other water source that is near your house, just to be careful.
Pooling water near your house can be very harmful for the foundation. It’s also bad for landscaping and could cause windows to leak.
Drips – One of the most visible signs of a leaking gutter is a drip, or several drips.
A drip coming from your gutter could indicate a clog, but if it’s coming from the bottom of the gutter and it isn’t a big overflow, there is an unseen leak. These minor leaks will occur 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 will begin soon, if it hasn’t already. The hole where the nail or screw fits in starts to become a new area where water can escape if the fastener works its way out.
Sometimes the solution is as easy as tightening them, but it might also be important to seal the hole so no water can leak from around the screw or the nail, even after it is back in place. You can buy this sealant, or let a gutter repair company put it on.
Water Stains or Rust – Water leaves behind evidence, especially if it is constantly or frequently there. Dark water stains will appear because dirt and other debris stick to the wet surface better than it would a dry one.
Rust is the result of constant moisture, and the more extreme sign you’ll notice after you see water stains. water stains can be cleaned and the gutters fixed, but if the gutters are rusty, they will definitely have to be repaired or be replaced.
Unexplained Home Damage – If there hasn’t been a storm, and you haven’t had a limb fall on your roof, but you’re starting to see paint flaking, cracking in the foundation or walkways, decaying wood on your patio or deck, or moldy 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 factors need to be considered when inspecting gutters for leaks.
Other gutter issues…
Not every gutter issue leads to major repairs. If you see these gutter issues, a leak might not be the issue.
Rain Overflow – This issue is usually an easy fix. It’s likely not a leak, but a clog that needs to be removed. You can do this or hire a Detroit gutter cleaning company – or even a general handyman – to clean them out.
Animal Nests – A small bird, squirrel, chipmunk or other pest can build a nest in your gutters or in your downspout, which can also 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 pooling – if you don’t get rid of it.
Trees & Plants – A tree can easily take root in your rain gutter with little debris present. While it may be little now, a sapling will sprout really strong roots that can destroy aluminum gutters before you know it.
Professional Gutter Repair
Any of these obvious signs indicate there are problems with your rain gutter that need to be addressed immediately. By checking all of your gutters and downspouts, you can see if there’s a cause for concern.
This is when a gutter service in Detroit can be of great help. They can distinguish if gutter replacement is required or if you can get by with repairs to extend the lifetime of your gutters. Sometimes, basic gutter cleaning is the only thing that’s needed.
Some homeowners choose to do simple gutter care and maintenance, like gutter cleaning, on their own. Although it it can be time consuming and sometimes dangerous, they are ready to complete the chore 1-2 times a year to save a little money.
However, anything beyond gutter cleaning is best left to the professionals.
Start by calling a gutter specialist with good customer reviews like Detroit Gutter Defense. Then let us do an inspection to accurately determine the issue. We offer free inspections for potential customers.
If there are any 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 can save you a lot of time and trouble in the long run!