At first glance, guttering systems used in homes are sturdier than they may appear to be. The National Association of Homebuilders says that gutters made of aluminum or galvanized steel typically last about 20 years, while copper gutters last for about 50 years. However, these projected lifespans don’t necessarily account for issues such as damage caused by fallen tree limbs or ladders.
So, if you don’t know when your gutters were installed, how can you know that you need to replace them? You definitely don’t want to be relying on a dysfunctional guttering system. Still, you don’t also want to rip down perfectly good gutters simply because of a blemish or two that some unscrupulous roofers may recommend while fixing your roof to charge you more money.
Here are 10 signs that you should look for:
A Large Number of Holes, Cracks, or Rust Spots
If you have just a few of these, you can easily fix them using some sealant and perhaps a bit of flashing. However, if you see more than half a dozen sections where this is apparent, it is time to consider replacing your old gutters with new ones.
Several Broken Fasteners
Fasteners are the pieces of metal used to hold the gutters to your roof and keep them level. If you are able to repair a few fasteners, that’s great. However, if the problems persist, your gutters could be the issue.
Screws or Nails on the Ground
The screws or nails used to fasten the gutters to the fascia may work themselves loose sometimes. It is not difficult to replace them, but repeated instances of this could be indicative of the fact that your gutters are worn.
Guttering systems only function when fastened together in a continuous channel. If you start noticing that they are separating from each other frequently, it could be time to start considering gutter replacement.
Gutters Pulling Away from the Roof
You can hammer in the fasteners time and again, but if spaces continue appearing between your gutters and roofline, it is possible that your fascia boards are rotting. Gutter replacement can help fix your fascia problem as well as giving you new gutters.
Incorrectly-Pitched or Sagging Gutters
If the right pitch isn’t maintained along your gutter system, water will pool in certain sections and probably spill over. If you are unable to fix the problem, you should seriously consider replacing your gutters.
Peeling Exterior Paint
Water can seep down over the rear edge onto your trim or siding if your gutters pull away from the roof. Peeling paint means that it has been happening for sometime and you probably need to replace the gutters.
Pooling Water or Dirt Channels
You may notice evidence that water is spilling over the gutters after it rains. You should first try correcting the problem, but if the water fails to go away, gutter replacement is something you should consider.
You have put a lot of effort, time, and money into ensuring that your landscaping looks good. If you find yourself constantly spending more resources repairing water damage from malfunctioning gutters, it could be time for gutter replacement.
Water pouring near your foundation constantly can easily find its way into your basement, where it can end up causing serious damage. When repairing your basement, you should also consider replacing your gutters too.
Final Tip: If you need to replace your gutters, you should also consider installing a gutter protection system.