Gutters are designed to protect your home from water damage. When your gutter system isn’t working optimally, your home is at risk. Identifiable signs of gutter damage include warped gutter sections, sagging, and noticeable dents. A few brackets are broken so a couple of gutter sections hang below the roofline. Is that a good enough reason to call a gutter professional or take the time to repair it yourself? Repairing “small” problems when they happen might not seem like money well-spent. But small problems have a habit of becoming big issues pretty quickly. Here are some persuasive reasons why the damage should be repaired as soon as it has been discovered.
Damage is damage.
Gradual damage is damage to gutters that starts out small and over time becomes more pronounced; it can be seen or hidden. Regardless of the type of damage – rust, dents, water stains, worn seams – any type of damage impacts your gutters in some way. A good example is a dent. Even if a dent does not cause aluminum gutters to rust, it restricts the amount of water that is able to flow through that particular gutter section.
The damage will only become worse.
No matter how small the hole, the dent, the number of missing hangers, or size of the rust spot, over time the damage will only become worse. For example, what started out as a small patch of mold/moss/mildew can spread to the siding, soffit, and fascia – add the cost of removing the plant growth from the gutters to replacing the affected siding, soffit and/or fascia panels and the repair could be costly.
The gutter system could leak.
If the gutter system hasn’t been cleaned in a while leaves, twigs and other bits of debris build up inside the gutter channel. When debris blocks the gutter outlet and prevents the downpipes from emitting the rainwater from the gutters, the extra weight of the standing water puts additional stress on the seams and joints of a gutter system. Especially when gutters are older (seven years plus), the sealant that connects sections together and weatherproofs seams and joints can wear down. With the extra pressure of a combination of standing water and organic materials, they become vulnerable to leaks.
Gutters could cause roof leaks.
Gutters that are filled with standing water can push water to back onto the roof where it can get into the roofing shingles. If it sits long enough unnoticed, the roof can develop leaks, causing water damage to interior ceilings, interior walls, and the basement. A leaking roof also allows in moisture, both into the house and the roof tiles, encouraging mold growth in areas that are likely to remain damp.
Working gutters protect the foundation.
Overflowing gutters or water that pools beneath the downpipes can cause severe damage to your foundation. When water collects too near the basement walls, soil erosion exposes the foundation, leaving it vulnerable to cracking, shifting, and flooding. Repairing or even replacing the gutters will be easier (and much less expensive) than dealing with a flooded basement or fixing the foundation.