Home guttering systems are sturdier than they might appear at first glance. According to the National Association of Homebuilders, gutters made of galvanized steel or aluminum usually last about two decades and copper gutters tend to hold their own for about half a century. These time periods may not account for problems like fallen tree limbs or damage from other occurrences.
Here are ten signs to look for:
1. A large number of cracks, holes, or rust spots - Some of these can be fixed using some sealant and maybe a little flashing, but if you are seeing many of these you might want to consider new gutters.
2. Several broken fasteners - These are pieces of metal that hold your gutter to your roof and keep it level. If you can repair a few fasteners, great; but if these problems persist it might be the gutter that needs attention.
3. Nails or screws on the ground - Sometimes the nails that fasten the gutter to the facia can work themselves loose. Replacing them isn't difficult, but again repeated instances might indicate gutter wear.
4. Separated gutters - Guttering systems only function if they are fastened together in a continuous channel. If they begin separating from one another frequently, it may be time for gutter replacement.
5. Gutters pulling away from the roof - You can hammer in fasteners time and time again, but if spaces continue to appear between your roofline and your gutters then the issue may also be your facia board.
6. Sagging or improperly pitched gutters - If a proper pitch is not maintained along your gutter system, the water will pool in certain sections and possibly spill over the gutters which can cause other problems.
7. Peeling exterior paint - When gutters pull away from your roof, the water can seep down over the rear edge and onto your siding or trim. Peeling paint means this has been happening for a while.
8. Dirt channels or pooling water - After a rain event, you may notice evidence that water is spilling over your gutters. You can try to correct the problem, but you might want to consider a gutter replacement.
9. Eroded landscaping - You work hard to make your landscaping look good. If you must repeatedly invest time and money to repair water damage from malfunctioning gutters, it's time for new gutters.
10. Flooded basements - Water constantly pouring near your foundation can leak into your basement where it can cause damage.
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