Gutters are so important because – despite being simple and relatively inexpensive – they protect valuable home components, such as the roof, foundation and windows. Maintaining and cleaning gutters is an easy way to protect your home from damages.
And it’s much simpler than you might think.
Spotting a gutter leak early can protect an entire home. Here, we’ve provided a few indicators that you can look for (without calling a roofer) to see if you have a gutter leaking.
How to Identify a Leaking Gutter
There are many signs that point to leaking gutters, even if you don’t physically see water dripping. You can do an inspection from the lawn to decide if the signs of a gutter leak are present.
Here are some things to keep an eye out for:
Visible Flaws – When the gutters pull away from the roof, it stresses the connectors. Cracks can be the result of faulty installation, low quality materials, damage or age. Cracks in the gutter or seeing any part of them pulling away from the roofing may not cause a leak yet, but will ultimately lead to problems. Getting 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 home, it’s a sign that a gutter leak is probably present. You should also check underground pipes, water spigots and any other water source that is near your home, just to be sure.
Pooling water around your home can be especially bad for the foundation. It’s also bad for landscaping and can cause windows to leak.
Drips – One of the most obvious signs of a gutter leak is a drip, or several drips.
A drip coming from your gutter is likely 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 somewhere. These small leaks will happen 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 rain gutters likely means a leak is going to start soon, if it hasn’t already. The hole where the nail or screw fits in starts to become a new area where water can get out if the fastener starts to fall out.
Sometimes the answer is as simple as refastening them, but it might also be necessary to cover the hole so no water can leak from around the screw or the nail, even after it is back in place. You can purchase this type of sealant, or let a gutter repair company apply it.
Water Stains or Rust – Water leaves evidence behind, especially if it is consistently or frequently there. Dark water stains will appear because dirt and other debris adhere to the wet surface better than on a dry one.
Rust is the result of constant moisture, and the more severe sign you’ll see after water stains. Most water stains on gutters can be cleaned away and the gutters can be fixed, but if gutters are rusty, they will definitely need to be repaired or be replaced.
Unexplained Home Damage – If there hasn’t been a severe storm, and you haven’t had a tree limb fall on your roof, but you’re beginning to notice paint flaking, cracking in the foundation around the downspouts or walkways, decaying wood on your porch 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. They also are related to older building materials, so all factors should be taken into account when inspecting gutters for leaks.
Other gutter issues…
Not all gutter issues lead to major repairs. If you see these common gutter issues, a leak might not be the problem.
Rain Overflow – This issue is usually an easy fix. It’s likely not a gutter leak, but a clog that should be cleaned out. You can do this or hire a Fresno 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 rain 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 a leak in a gutter – 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 know it.
Professional Gutter Repair
Any of these visible 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 Fresno can be of great help. They can determine if gutter replacement is necessary or if you can get by with repairs to lengthen the lifetime of your gutters. Sometimes, gutter cleaning is all that’s needed.
Homeowners can choose to do simple gutter care and maintenance, such as gutter cleaning, themselves. Although it it can be time consuming and sometimes dangerous, they are ready to take on the project 1-2 times each year to save a little money.
However, any job beyond simple gutter cleaning is best left to the professionals.
Start by hiring a gutter service with excellent customer reviews like Fresno Gutter Service. Then let us do an inspection to accurately determine the problem. We offer free inspections for potential customers.
If there are repairs to be made, or if we feel that it’s time to install new gutters, you can trust us to get the job done. Our gutter repair service will save you a lot of time and trouble in the long run!