Regular maintenance of your drainage system is the easiest way to prevent overflowing gutters. If you find that your gutter is blocked you’ll need to fix it as soon as possible to avoid expensive repairs. Here is some timely advice to keep your gutters in tip-top condition.
Check your pipes
You really need to check your pipes and downspouts regularly to ensure any leaves and other debris don’t block the gutter, preventing it from working properly. As soon as you notice any unusual water marks on your brickwork, or dampness around the window frames, you’ll need to investigate further. Safely climb up to the affected area and see what’s happening.
To remove any obstructions you’ll need to wear gloves to stop your hands getting cut by any sharp objects. There may be remnants of birds’ nests or pest infestation, and the gloves will protect you. Use a gutter scoop to take away all the debris and put it into a bucket to dispose of later. You can then flush out the gutters using a garden hose.
Test the water flow
Another common problem that causes gutter overflow is the gutter being installed in the wrong direction. This in effect means that the water has to travel in an upwards direction, which it can’t do! Consequently the water forms a pool and then begins to leak. You can easily check the alignment of the gutter with a spirit level to see if it needs adjusting. If you can’t do this job on your own, you should call in the professionals.
You may find that you need additional piping to prevent overflowing gutters. The number of pipes you need will depend on the size of your property. Ask for advice if you think this may be a problem.
Repair or replace?
Once the gutter has started to overflow it’ll lead to further problems. These can include pulling the piping away from the fascia boards, causing the gutter to spilt, or forming holes in the pipes. You can make patch repairs of small holes with gutter sealant, but often this isn’t a long term fix, and you may end up having to replace the section of gutter. For larger holes you can use roofing cement or silicone caulk to fix the problem.
Broken hangers caused by the weight of the water can easily be replaced. If you’ve got seamless gutters that have bent under the weight they’ll need to be replaced with new units. If your downspouts are leaking they may also need to be replaced to ensure they maintain their effectiveness. Any cracking, chipping or rusting are signs that the downspout needs changing.
Put up guards
Adding a splash or leaf guard to the bottom of the roof valley can help stop the build-up of leaves and other debris – one of the prime reasons for overflowing gutters. You’ll be able to buy pre-cut guards to match you gutter system and the only tools you’ll need will be a cordless drill and drill bits. Drilling through both the guard and the gutter will secure the guards in place.
If you don’t have the tools or the confidence to complete any of the tasks mentioned then simply find local gutter experts to help you, Gutter Clean Up advices. You’ll also be able to arrange regular gutter cleaning sessions so that you don’t have to worry about overflowing gutters in the future.