Gutters play an important role in keeping your home safe from water damage, but they don’t actually stand out much. In fact, they’ll mostly stay under your radar – that is, until something goes seriously wrong with them. Have you checked your gutters lately? You might want to do so now. The task is notably easier compared to visual roof inspections because the telltale signs of gutter damage are usually more obvious. Still, it pays to know exactly what you should be watching out for.
Here’s how you can inspect your gutters the way professionals do.
Start From the Ground
Before climbing any ladders, it’s a good idea to examine your gutters’ condition from the ground. The angle allows you to check their slope and consistency. As you probably already know, gutters don’t run a straight line along your roof. They’re actually pitched slightly so they can catch the rainwater coming down the roof more effectively. From your position on the ground, examine the gutters for sections that appear lower or higher than the rest. Do some parts look out of place? Are the sections beginning to pull away from the roofline? Checking whether this is the case is the first step to getting the necessary solution.
Remove Leaves and Debris Inside Your Gutters
Leaves, pine needles and other loose debris can end up inside your gutters, creating blockages that hinder their ability to drain runoff properly. If you want to take a closer look at the system, you’ll need to have these blockages cleared away first. You can either clean the gutters yourself or hire an expert for the task. To reduce stress and ensure your personal safety, we recommend doing the latter.
Check the Gutters for Holes, Cracks and Standing Water
Once the gutters are cleared of leaves and debris, take the water hose out for a few experiments. Use it to run water along the highest points of the gutters. If there are any cracks and holes in the system, you’ll find out soon enough because water will be leaking out of these openings. This usually indicates failed seals in the gutter system. Any cracks and holes can be patched and repaired if they’re small enough. When that’s not the case – and the leaks are actually pretty serious – a new gutters might be the better option.
But what if there’s no water leaking out of your gutters? Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean everything’s good. Check the downspouts. If the water from the hose isn’t flowing out of them, it can only mean that water is building up somewhere in your gutters. Standing water can be a serious problem because it puts unnecessary strain on the gutters, causing them to sag or detach from the fascia board. When it rains, the accumulated water can also flow over the sides of the gutters, splashing against the side of your home and wreaking havoc on the ground below. But it doesn’t end there either. The longer standing water is overlooked, the higher the chances of leaks. The accumulated water can seep through the fascia board and find its way down the attic and into your home.
Look for Gaps in the Gutter Apron
In more serious cases, gutter damage is represented by a visible gap between the gutters and the building to which they’re attached. The two elements are connected by guards called gutter aprons. These are long pieces of metal installed under the roof’s first layer of shingles. Gutter aprons ensure that the rainwater flowing down the roof is fed directly into the gutters and won’t splash behind the system. When there’s a gap between the gutters and your home’s exterior wall, it can only mean the aprons have been compromised.
Inspect Your Gutter Protection System
If you have gutter protection installed over your system, don’t forget to check its condition as well. Gutter protection works by filtering out leaves and loose debris so they don’t end up clogging your gutters. It’s available in different types, ranging from mesh and brush to foam and perforated. If the gutter protection remains intact – no gaps, clogs or holes made by small animals – then the actual gutter system may still be in good shape.
What’s the Next Step?
Experts recommend a gutter inspection at least twice a year – one in early spring and another in fall. This allows you to spot any issues before they can worsen and cause further damage. But what exactly is next after a gutter inspection? It’s simple – you’ll have to call in a professional like Barry Best Seamless Gutters. While the signs of gutter damage are easy to spot, dealing with the actual problem is another story. This is especially true when the damage to your gutters is severe. The issue may require a seamless gutters installation – a solution that homeowners should never attempt to DIY.
Madison County homeowners know that when it comes to high-quality gutter services, Barry Best Seamless Gutters will definitely deliver. We are:
- Fully licensed, bonded and insured for your greater protection.
- Locally owned and operated so we know exactly your gutter needs and how to meet them.
- Experienced, serving communities in Canastota, NY, and beyond for nearly 30 years.
- Certified by trusted industry names, such as Gutter Helmet® and Sunesta®.
- Accredited by the Better Business Bureau® and maintains a prominent A+ rating with them, which is a testament of the quality of our workmanship.
- Committed to delivering complete client satisfaction through our high-quality products, exceptional workmanship, and customer-first service.
- Offering flexible financing options via GreenSky® so that cash wouldn’t get in the way of your seamless gutter and gutter protection installation.
Why Go Seamless?
Gutters are generally available in two types: sectional and seamless. Between the two options, you’ll find the latter several steps above the former. Picking seamless gutters means putting your trust on a system that can provide tougher and more effective draining performance. Seamless gutters are crafted to precise measurements using a single, continuous piece of metal. This allows them to fit perfectly along your roofline. And because seamless gutters use thick, contractor-grade material, they’re considerably stronger than sectional systems, allowing them to withstand the harshest elements more effectively.
There’s less chance of leaks and congestion when you choose seamless gutters. The few seams they do have are found only in corners, significantly reducing the potential for seal failure. Their sleek design also ensures that water drains properly into the system and is directed away from your home via the downspouts. In addition, seamless gutters can add a clean and finished look to your roofline. They can be customized with your choice of profile, color and material, allowing them to match perfectly with your home’s style, roof color and exterior palette.
To get the most out of your seamless gutters, consider having a quality gutter protection system installed. Barry Best Seamless Gutters is a certified installer of Gutter Helmet gutter protection. It features a patented nose-forward design that allows only rainwater into the gutter system. Everything else – leaves, pine needles and other loose debris – are shed to fall harmlessly to the ground. Thanks to Gutter Helmet gutter protection, the need for frequent gutter cleaning and maintenance is significantly reduced. And since this option is also available in a variety of classic finishes, it will fit in beautifully with the color of your seamless gutters.