How Often Should Gutters Be Replaced?
15 April 2019
While every homeowner dreads the idea that something needs to be repaired or replaced, the guttering of your home plays an integral role therefore it’s maintenance should not be taken lightly.
When the signs that your gutter needs replacing are there, you don’t want to wait. The types of problems that can affect your gutters will worsen over time, and this will only lead to repair work that is not only more time consuming, but more expensive.
Signs It’s Time To Replace Your Guttering
The majority of rainwater systems are manufactured from galvanised steel or aluminium, giving them a lifespan of approximately 20 years. However, if the correct maintenance measures are put into place, these can often achieve a lifespan of as much as 40 years.
Watching out for these signs will help you to determine the condition of your gutters, and when it seems like the right time for repair or replacement:
Cracks or Fractures
Visible cracks, gaps or fractures in your guttering causes rainwater to leak onto your fascia or, even worse, your house. Over time, even the smallest cracks can turn into larger fractures that will create problems for your home’s entire drainage system.
If you notice that your gutters are sagging or pulling away, this usually indicates that the brackets have become loose. Most of the time, this is due to a build up of debris, such as leaves, that have not been cleared for some time. During winter months, you should check that your guttering is clear from blockages.
Standing Water or Water Damage Marks
The main job of your gutters is to channel water away from your home. Therefore, any standing water in them is not normal and should be rectified as soon as possible. Similarly, any discolouration that you notice on the exterior of your home, fascia or downspouts can be an indication of moisture damage.
Mould or Rust
One of the easiest signs to spot that your gutters are no longer doing their job is mould in your loft, or on your ceiling. Mould thrives in areas that are damp or poorly ventilated and will continue to reproduce by making spores that can lead to asthma and other airway symptoms. Excessive rainfall can also cause rust which will eventually cause the metal to shatter and break.
If you’ve noticed that the soil in your garden has suddenly become less dense, this may be a sign that it is getting too much water. Broken gutters will cause water to leak into your garden, ruining the luscious green of your lawn.
Problems With Your Foundation
When excess moisture seeps into the soil underneath your home will eventually start to cause the foundations of the property to shift or crack. When a property’s foundation is compromised, huge problems can occur that will take a great deal of time and money to put right.
Are your downspouts spitting out water every time that it rains? This is a sign that your gutters are overflowing. Perhaps they have been improperly installed, are not sloped correctly or are far too narrow for the style of your home.
Unexplained Nails or Screws
Rogue nails or screws outside your home may have come from gutters that are starting to work themselves loose. In this instance, it may be that only a certain section of your gutter needs to be replaced, but it’s worth assessing the whole system.
While they are not the only indicators of poorly fitted or broken gutters, any of these signs can mean that you require a brand new rainwater system to ensure the safety of your home. It is recommended that you assess and clean your gutter at least twice a year, and ideally after months with heavy rainfall. Fixing minor problems as they arise will be much most cost-effective than undergoing major replacement.
However, if you know that it is time to undergo replacement, our expert team is on hand to assist you and provide the information you require to make your decision. We can advise on gutter materials for all properties, whether it’s a listed building or a modern home.