Rain gutters are a home feature you probably don’t think about unless you suspect a problem. However, regular maintenance can help prevent clogged or broken gutters and help you avoid costly home repairs due to water damage. Learn more about checking your gutters and repairing gutter leaks to keep this important fixture in top shape year-round.
If you suspect you already have a gutter leak or other problem, check out these common FAQs for help.
Why Do My Gutters Drip?
If you don’t have a seamless gutter, then it is likely assembled from several pieces that are sealed together. If you notice water dripping from any of these seams, they are no longer sealed properly. This is easy to repair but must be done when the gutters are dry. You will need to clean out dirt and debris and check the weather to make sure you will have at least a few hours for the seal to dry before it gets wet.
How Do I Know If My Gutter Is Leaking?
If you don’t witness a problem with your gutters during a rainstorm, you may notice other signs of a leak. Check for water damage on the exterior of your home or look for pooling from water that has run down door frames, walls, or window frames. You should also inspect your gutters periodically, even if only from the ground. Look for missing hardware, rust, holes, sagging, or bent pieces. Any of these issues may result in a gutter leak or other damage.
Why Is Water Leaking Behind My Gutters?
There are a few reasons you may have water leaking behind your gutters. This is what you should do:
Start by looking for a blockage where debris is causing water to pool and overflow rather than run its course.
If this is not the problem, check to see if the gutter has pulled away from the wall, leaving a gap for water to get through.
Next, check the drip edge (the piece tucked under the edge of the shingles that directs water into the gutters) to make sure it is properly secured and in place.
Finally, make sure the pitch of the gutter has not changed. The gutter should be slightly pitched to direct water toward the downspout. If there is sagging, warping, or other damage, the pitch may be altered, causing the water to pool or run off somewhere else.
The next section will tell you how to address these problems.
Can Leaky Gutters Be Repaired?
Whether or not you can repair a leaky gutter will depend on the cause of the leak. If it is clogged, you can probably just clean it out. If the seal is worn out or there is a piece of hardware missing, you can probably replace or repair it. However, any other problems will be better solved by replacing the damaged section or the entire system rather than repairing gutter leaks.
Should I Repair or Replace Gutters?
If you encounter a problem with your gutters, there are instances where repairs or improvements can be made. For example, a small and harmless amount of rust can be repainted to improve curb appeal. Unfortunately, some damage cannot be repaired. Gutters that are old and worn, bent, excessively rusty, growing mold or mildew, or pulling away from the house will need to be replaced.
You may also choose to replace your gutters in order to get a different color to match the house or because you are getting a roof replacement. It is not always necessary to replace the gutters when getting a new roof, but this is an ideal time for an update.
What Are the Dangers or Problems of DIY Gutter Repair?
Installing gutters and repairing gutter leaks yourself will always come with a certain amount of risk. If you make a mistake, it can lead to costly damage or injury. It is always best to hire a professional to ensure that everything is installed correctly and safely.
When you hire a professional, you don’t have to worry about heights or unstable ladders.
Professionals have access to better prices on materials. Doing it yourself may not save you as much money as you think.
DIY jobs often include small but costly mistakes, such as measurement errors.
During the learning process, you are likely to break a gutter, rendering it unusable.
When you do it yourself, you won’t have expert guidance. If you make a mistake, you may have water damage or other problems.
Doing it yourself means no warranty.
American Roofing Company
For more information about installing rain gutters or repairing gutter leaks, check out American Roofing Company. Our seamless gutters, industrial-grade heating cables, and gutter leaf protection will help you simplify maintenance and ensure your gutters are doing their job the way they were meant to. We also provide superior workmanship, warranties, and roofing services so you can be sure your home is well protected when it rains.
About the Author: Andrew Yorgason
Andrew Yorgason was born and raised in the Salt Lake Valley. He is the proud father of four children and when he’s not up on a roof or at the office, you can find him on a golf course, at a sporting event, or spending time with his family at their ranch enjoying the outdoors and riding horses. Andrew is a third-generation roofer and part of the next generation of ownership at American Roofing. He has been involved with his family’s business since birth and loves helping protect homes in Utah one roof at a time.