7 Signs of Gutter Damage on Your Home

damaged rain gutter

If you are like a lot of homeowners, your rain gutters aren’t something you really think about. They need routine gutter cleaning, but otherwise, their functionality is incredibly simple.

It’s not until your gutters aren’t doing what they’re supposed to that you realize just how important they are for your home!

WHAT DO GUTTERS DO?

Gutters and downspouts go unnoticed on most homes in Fort Collins. They fade into the home’s exterior unless the homeowner has opted for copper or wood … materials that are designed to stand out! Most are crafted from durable but lightweight aluminum or vinyl siding.

The purpose of rain gutters is to create a route of least resistance for rain and snow to get off your roof quickly. When they are in good condition, your gutters will route runoff away from the home’s foundation and landscaping, will protect your home’s exterior from mildew and mold, the foundation and basement from leaking water, and the gutters themselves from wear and rust.

When gutters are damaged, it can lead to thousands of dollars’ worth of damage to your home and property.

ARE YOUR GUTTERS DAMAGED?

Gutter damage is too simple to repair to be the reason for any major home repairs! Keeping an eye on your gutters is simple and safe. If you identify any of the following signs, it’s a pretty strong clue that your gutters have some type of damage.

As soon as you notice a gutter problem, you can decide whether it’s something you feel comfortable repairing or remedying by yourself or if it’s something you should hire a gutter repairman for.

Sitting Water Near Your Home

Sitting water near your home is a sure sign that your gutters or downspouts are not sending the water runoff away from your home the way they should be. Pooling water can result in mold, weakening of your foundation, and provides the perfect habitat for pesky mosquitoes. And, it will leave the areas around your home constantly wet and muddy.

Mold or Mildew

Mold or mildew is a bad sign, whether you see mold or mildew on the gutters or the sides of your house. Mold and mildew indicate there is a lot of moisture in that area – a potential problem with the rain gutters could be to blame. Remember that mildew and mold are likely to grow on the north side of a home anyway, so if that’s where they’re growing, it may just be because that area doesn’t get a lot of direct sunlight on it. This is a time where the advice and expertise of a professional in Fort Collins would be helpful.

Rain Pouring Over the Gutter

You will need to wait until it’s raining to notice this gutter problem. Hopefully this doesn’t mean that your gutters are damaged. It could just be that the gutter is full of debris and needs to be cleaned out. Either way, you want to have it checked right away.

Basement Leaks

Depending on the design of your home’s basement, your leak might be caused by any number of things. The standing water problem we mentioned earlier could definitely result in a basement leak. Egress windows and even cinder block walls will only keep out so much water. That’s why it is important to keep your gutters in good condition!

Landscaping or Lawn Damage

Rain gutters empty directly onto the ground most of the time, and landscaping should be laid out to work with this water flow to help it disperse into the ground. But, a leaking gutter or clogged gutter will cause rainfall to overflow or pool where it isn’t supposed to. This water can kill plants either by force or by overwatering. It might also displace flower bed building materials like mulch or rock.

Water Marks

Water marks are a visible sign that there is too much moisture on a surface. Water marks are left behind even if pooling water has evaporated or dissipated. You will usually find water marks right beneath the rain gutters or behind the downspouts. This is a usually an indication that rain water is pouring down the outside of the gutters and not staying inside of them.

Visible Gutter Damage

The last sign of gutter damage is the simplest to find. If your gutters are bent, sagging or cracked, they have damage. Following a storm, it’s a good idea to walk around your home to assess any damage to the roof shingles, exterior, and gutters. These inspections are in addition to your standard home inspections.

HOW TO PROTECT YOUR GUTTERS?

Here are some simple ways Fort Collins Gutter Service recommends to help prevent gutter damage:

Clean your gutters out at least one time a year. You can extend the amount of time between gutter repairs by having them cleaned out regularly. As with anything else, the better you maintain your gutters, the less issues you’ll have with them.

The optimal time to clean out gutters is in the spring, but to be extra cautious, give them a good cleaning in the fall, too. A lot of homeowners choose to clean their gutters themselves, but there are local gutter cleaning companies that provide this service so you don’t have to deal with the work or the risk.

Inspect your gutters often. Signs of damage can be visible from the outside of the gutters. Just a quick inspection – with both feet firmly on the ground – should reveal any of the problems we wrote about above.

We’d suggest that you complete an exterior home inspection following each season to ensure that your gutters are functioning the right way.

When you see signs of gutter damage, act fast. Taking care of an issue before it becomes too bad can save you a lot of time and money. A small crack, for example, can be sealed, or the section of gutter with the crack can easily be replaced very affordably and quickly.

But, if you let the issue go on for too long, you might end up making repairs in your basement, replacing vinyl siding or redoing an entire section of landscaping.