Gutters are the unsung hero of your home. They direct water away from the foundation, protecting the structure of your house and preventing water damage. Maintenance is quite easy and doesn’t include much more than a quick cleaning of buildup every now and then.
However, faulty or old gutters can cause a great deal of damage if not fixed or replaced. Doug Cornwell, Chief Operating Officer at Alure Home Improvements, explained that this type of project is crucial to maintaining your home, and it doesn’t take much time at all.
“Most gutter replacements can be done within the same day,” he said.
When deciding whether or not your home is in need of new gutters, there are several signs you need to look out for. Cornwell explained some of the top indicators.
1. Cracked or broken gutters
Cracks in your gutters allow water, snow and debris to fall through and gather at the foundation. While you may be able to patch it up with the help of a professional, it might be best to replace them altogether. When gutters begin to crack, it could mean that they’re old and outdated. Fixing up one area of damage could just be a temporary solution that you’ll have to revisit at a later time. Also, small cracks that don’t seem like anything substantial can quickly grow and become much more damaging to your gutters.
“Sagging gutters can happen when snow or ice piles up and weighs them down.”
2. Sagging framework
Loose or hanging gutters can happen when snow or ice piles up and weighs them down. This kind of issue is best repaired by professionals, since it requires getting on a ladder and installing screws in key places to maintain the proper structure and support. Ideally, new gutters would be used for the best longevity and alignment. Those looking for professional home improvement help should take the time to find the best contractors, noted Cornwell.
“Find someone who’s licensed and insured and has a good record with the Better Business Bureau,” he said. “Look to your social networks to find someone who’s local and has positive reviews.”
3. Puddles or ice at the foundation
When there’s a lot of water or ice at the foundation of your home, it could mean your gutters aren’t doing their job.
“Improper installation, cold weather or the use of inferior materials can be damaging to your gutters,” said Cornwell.
Consult with a professional to see how to repair or replace your gutters, as standing water is a sure sign of gutter damage.
4. Rotted fascia
Your gutters can rot when there’s a buildup of water or snow that isn’t properly draining. Just as water deteriorates metal over time, it also damages paint. Therefore, peeled paint is another key indicator that water isn’t being released as it should. It’s recommended to replace gutters when these signs are prevalent, as fresh, new gutters that are properly installed will guide water through the piping and repel it away from the soffits and fascia, the way it’s designed to.
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