Rain Gutters are so important because – despite being simple and inexpensive – they protect valuable home components, like the roof, foundation and windows. Caring for and cleaning gutters is an easy way to help protect your home from damages.
And it’s much easier than you might think.
Finding a gutter leak early can protect your entire home. In this blog post, we’ve listed a few signs that you can look for (without calling a roofer) to determine if your gutters are leaking.
How to Identify Leaking Gutters
There are a number of signs that point to a gutter leak, even if you don’t actually notice water dripping. You can do a visual inspection from the ground to decide if the signs of a leaking gutter 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 connections. Cracks can be the result of faulty installation, low quality materials, storm damage or general wear and tear. Cracks in the gutter channel or seeing any section of them pulling away from the roof might not be causing a leak just yet, but these things will definitely lead to problems. Getting these defects fixed is more affordable than replacing gutters or any of the damages a leak can lead to.
Pooling – If water is puddling around your house, it’s a sign that a gutter leak is present. You should also check pipes, water spigots and any water source that is near your house, just in case.
Pooling water near your house can be really bad for the foundation. It’s also bad for landscaping and can cause your windows to leak.
Dripping – One of the more noticeable signs of a gutter leak is a drip, or several of them.
A drip from your gutter is likely a clog, but if it’s coming from the bottom of the gutter and it isn’t overflowing, there is a hidden leak. These tiny leaks can happen if a fastener has gotten loose (see the next item on our list).
Visible Fasteners – Finding 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 starts to become a new area where water can escape if the fastener starts to fall out.
Sometimes the solution is as simple as refastening them, but it might also be important to seal the hole so no more water can leak from around the screw or nail, even after it is back in place. You can buy this sealant, or let a gutter repair company apply it.
Water Stains or Rust – Moisture leaves evidence behind, especially when it is consistently or frequently present. Dark water stains will appear because dirt and other organic debris stick to the moist surface better than it would a dry one.
Rust is the result of nearly constant moisture, and the more extreme sign you’ll see after water stains. water stains on gutters can be cleaned and the gutters fixed, but if the gutters are rusty, they will definitely have 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 your roof, but you’re starting to notice paint flaking, cracking in the foundation or walkways, decaying wood on your porch or deck, or mold on your window sills, you might have a gutter leak.
These are all signs that water has been leaking from a place it shouldn’t. They also go hand in hand with 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 common gutter issues, a gutter leak may not be the issue.
Rain Overflow – This issue is a pretty simple fix. It’s likely not a gutter leak, but a clog that should be cleaned out. You can do this or hire a Modesto gutter cleaning service – or even a general handyman – to clean out the gutters.
Animal Nests – A bird, squirrel, chipmunk can build a nest in your gutters or downspout, which will 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 puddling – if you don’t get rid of the nest.
Trees & Plants – A tree can easily take root in your gutter with little debris present. While it may be little now, a sapling will sprout strong roots that can damage aluminum gutters before you know it.
Professional Gutter Repair
Any of these easy-to-see signs mean 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 reason for concern.
This is when a gutter service in Modesto can be of great help. They can distinguish whether gutter replacement is necessary or if you can get by with repairs to extend the lifetime of your home’s gutters. Sometimes, gutter cleaning is all that’s needed.
Homeowners can decide to do simple gutter care, like gutter cleaning, on their own. Although it is time consuming and dangerous, they are ready to complete the project 1-2 times each year to save a little money.
However, anything beyond gutter cleaning should be left to the professionals.
Start by finding a gutter service with excellent customer reviews like Modesto Gutter Service. Then let us do an inspection to correctly determine the issue. We provide free inspections for potential customers.
If there are any gutter repairs to be made, or if we think that it’s time to install new gutters, you can trust us to get the job done right. Our gutter repair service can save you a lot of time and trouble in the long run!