5 Tell-Tale Signs that it’s Maybe Time for Gutter Replacement

There are many aspects involved in ensuring that your home safeguards your family, no matter what the season. While maintaining your roof, windows and doors may rank high on that list, how important is gutter maintenance on your to-do list?

Investing in the gutter replacement Melbourne homeowners rely on to keep their homes safe is a key aspect of annual maintenance. While most gutters last for an average of 20 years, weather elements often require them to be replaced sooner.

Know the Signs

Gutter replacement is one of those home maintenance tasks that the average homeowner usually puts off for as long as possible. While this is often due to the cost, it also has a lot to do with not knowing if you can get away with ‘fixing it up’.

What are the signs to look out for that prove replacement is imminent?

1.     Pools of Water

Downpipes and gutters need to be kept clean for water to flow off the roof and out of the gutters. When leaves and twigs build up in the gutters, water starts pooling in the gutters and around your home’s foundation. These pools indicate that the gutters aren’t working properly.

Here your first course of action should be to clean the gutters and ensure that there isn’t any garden debris creating a blockage. If there doesn’t seem to be any blockages, the next step will be to check that the gutters aren’t loose or poorly installed. (Especially if they have been installed in the last five years.)

It’s essential to diagnose the reason for the water pooling in and around your gutters as quickly as possible. Water that’s left to pool in these areas often leads to damage to the foundation and a build-up of mould and mildew which is bad for you and your house.

2.     Peeling Paint

Generally speaking, the paint on your gutters and exteriors should be able to withstand a significant amount of wear and tear. This includes the seasonal battering your home takes throughout the year.

With that in mind, paint that only seems to be peeling on your gutters indicates that there is a problem that can’t be associated with normal wear and tear. In addition to peeling paint, you should also look out for orange spots as these are a clear sign of pooling water.

3.     Appearance of Cracks

With gutters, it’s important to note that you shouldn’t only be looking for enormous cracks to be concerned. If left unrepaired, the appearance of small cracks can lead to more significant problems such as:

  • Damaging the fascia boards situated behind the gutters
  • Cracking the shingles
  • Causing water damage to the foundation which can seep into the home

Fortunately, smaller cracks can be repaired if the rest of the gutter isn’t damaged. If you’ve never done this type of repair, it’s a good idea to call your local gutter professional. On the plus side, they will most likely check your whole gutter system and may recommend repairs which will give your gutter system a new lease on life.

4.     Watermarks on the Walls

No matter how old your house is, there shouldn’t be watermarks directly beneath the gutters. Remember that watermarks aren’t formed by normal water flow, but rather by consistent water pooling or leaking. In many instances, this indicates that your gutter is overflowing directly above the watermark.

As with the other signs, start by checking for debris, holes or loose gutters. This will indicate whether your gutters need a simple repair or replacement.

5.     Gutters Sagging or Pulling Away

Gutters sagging or pulling away from the wall is a clear and simple sign that it’s time to replace them. The pulling away will be evident from the ground and usually indicates that the gutters are starting to buckle under the weight of something such as water or garden debris, or in most instances, a combination of both.

If sagging is happening when the gutters are reasonably new, or not showing any other signs of damage, it may be because the ones you have aren’t suitable for your home. If your home has 4-inch gutters, you should consider upgrading to 5-inch variations. This will add extra support to your drainage system.

6.     Rust Appearing in More Than One Place

As with just about everything else around your home, the appearance of rust is a clear sign that an item needs to be replaced. While smaller rust spots may not indicate an immediate problem, larger spots can seriously affect your gutter’s integrity.

Also, smaller spots can be repaired, but the same usually can’t be said for the bigger spots. Your gutter professional will be able to advise you about the types of spots that can be repaired. The rule here is to not wait until the spots are enormous.

Final Thoughts

Seasonal maintenance will ensure that your gutters don’t become blocked and allow water to flow as it should. Doing this means that you are less likely to experience any of the signs that will require gutter replacement before the end of their lifespan.

But, when the signs are clear, don’t waste time in getting the help you need! Your home’s roof and overall structure could be at stake!