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Hidden Water Damage: Deciding When It’s Time to Replace Your Gutters

April 7, 2017

Water damage is bad news for your home whichever way you look at it, and it can be frustrating to be presented with a massive cleanup bill that could have been avoided with some regular property maintenance and preventative measures.

An obvious starting point when you are looking at ways to prevent water from getting into your property is to check regularly that your gutters are in good working order and not damaged in any way.

Here is a look at some of the classic warning signs with your gutters to heed if you want to avoid the prospect of water damage, why even minor issues need your attention, plus some maintenance tips to prolong the life of your gutters.

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Your gutters are an important ally

It is easy to take your gutters for granted but they are an integral and essential part of your property and play an important role in directing water away from your walls, windows, and any other part of your property that could be damaged if water was allowed to invade there.

It doesn’t bear thinking about just how much damage your home would suffer without an efficient gutter system to protect it, which is why they need your attention on a regular basis.

You should be frequently clearing debris out from your gutters so that the channels are clear and the water can run freely away from your property, and while you are doing that, it would be a good to carry out a quick inspection and check for any signs of damage.

Even small cracks are a problem

On the face of it, you might think that a small crack in your gutters is no big deal and nothing to worry about as an urgent issue.

The obvious thing to say is that small cracks are not exactly going to get any better and inevitably they will turn into bigger ones that increase the prospect of water damage. Gutters are under fairly constant attack from rainwater and the weight of any debris is going to put added pressure on those cracks.

It is often far better to fix a small problem as soon as possible rather than leaving it until you end up with damage to the fascia boards, shingles, and even the foundation below.

Signs of inefficiency

If you notice that paint is peeling on around your gutters or you notice orange flecks, these are typical warning signs that water is not running away as efficiently as it could be.

Your gutters are clearly designed to withstand a certain amount of wear and tear and any paint used on them is designed to provide a decent element of protection, but that doesn’t last forever.

What the orange flecks and peeling paint are telling you is that rust is developing as a result of water being present in the gutters on a continuous basis. You should heed these warning signs as evidence that water is not being removed efficiently by the gutter and it might be time to think about replacing them.

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No need for a ladder to spot this damage

If you don’t have much of a head for heights or just want to know the most obvious signs that your gutters might have reached the end of their natural life, simply look up and see whether they have started to sag or pull away from your property.

Make no mistake, gutters should never sag or pull away from your property if you want to enjoy adequate protection from water damage.

When your gutters are displaying these signs of distress it could mean they are full of water or the fixings or gutter itself has become damaged. Faced with this scenario, it might be time to consider calling someone like Wildwood Roofing and Construction, to evaluate the extent of the problem and talk about replacement or repair options.

Regular cleaning and maintenance

If you clean out your gutters regularly and stay on top of minor repairs, there is every chance that they will last at least 20 years or more before they need replacing.

Most damage is fixable but there will be times when the best option is to go ahead and replace your gutter system in order to give your home the protection it needs from water damage.

Always be on the lookout for signs of water damage and take action urgently to fix any problems you find, if you don’t want to be dealing with a bigger problem later on.

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Disclosure: This is a featured article from Archie Hope. Archie Hope works for a home maintenance company. A friendly fellow who is always ready to accept a cup of tea and a chat, he is now sharing his top tips with homeowners online, all over the world.

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