How to Fix Leaky Gutters
Gutters are used to direct rainwater to the appropriate drainage area to avoid any damage to the house or drainage and flooding problems. However, they end up collecting all other debris that ends up falling from the roof including leaves and branches. Most homeowners tend to overlook the maintenance of gutters and over time they may develop leaks at different spots. The accumulation of branches and leaves and also snow in colder climates, is bound to contribute to leaky gutters as their structure becomes weaker over time. For those who like simple do-it-yourself projects to keep their house in the best condition. Below we will look at some useful tips on how to fix leaky gutters.
Before delving into the different ways of how to fix leaky gutters, it is essential to first note that gutters exist in two different variants. There are plastic and metal gutters available today. The fact that they are made of different materials means that they require different repair methods and equipment. Homeowners should begin by inspecting their home’s gutters to find out exactly what they are made of to determine what method to follow.
Fix Leaky Gutters – Metal
In most cases, metal gutters are the norm especially for older structures. The simplest way on how to fix leaky gutters that are made of metal is to scrape the joint and clear any debris and then dry it. Once dry, use a caulking gun to inject roofing and gutter sealant. If the leak persists then, it may require more work to repair your leaky gutter as described below.
Where the leaky gutter is not repaired by a simple application of sealant, it will be necessary to dismantle the entire gutter joint clean off the old and dried up putty and then apply a new sealant. Dismantling gutters may be problematic considering that the spike and ferrules used to hang the gutters may not pull out easily without damaging the gutters. It is then going to be necessary to replace the gutters instead of repairing them.
Fix Leaky Gutters – Plastic
Leaky gutters made of plastic, on the other hand, require less work as compared to metal gutters. Plastic gutters mainly leak around unions or joints that connect to the gutters to lead water downwards. In this case the most common cause of such leaks is the accumulation of dirt that forces the gaskets sealing the union to give way.
To fix leaky gutters made of pvc, press the pipe inwards to release the clips holding the pipe leading water down to the union. Once it releases you can check to see whether cleaning the accumulated dirt will be enough to fix the leak or installation of a new gasket is required. There are also PVC gutters that you can clean the gutter joints, then dry the pvc leaky gutter joint. You fix leaky gutter joints by applying a sealant recommended for pvc gutters. Regular maintenance will prevent leaky gutters.
Remove Pine Needles From Roofs
You ask “do I need to remove pine needles from roofs”? The answer is yes. You do need to remove pine needles from roofs. They retain moisture which will prematurely age your roof. Below is the recommendations from PABCO®Roofing Products on how to maintain your roof.
PABCO®Roofing Products recommends the following maintenance practices for our asphalt shingles. There may be additional practices for other components of the full roofing system. PABCO® is only addressing the maintenance practices for our shingles.
• Avoid unnecessary foot traffic. The surface granules provide the appearance of the roof, but also cover and protect the core asphalt from harmful ultraviolet light. Excessive scuffing will shorten the useful life of the roof. (Newly installed asphalt shingles commonly carry some extra granules riding on the surface of the shingle.
These normally come off of the roof in a short period of time by the actions of rain and/or wind. After this initial release of granules, it is part of the normal weathering process for additional granules to be released over the life of the shingles.)
• Never allow water from a downspout to discharge directly onto a roof below. Connect an upper story downspout to a lower level gutter.
• Moss and algae need moisture to grow. To reduce the time moisture is available on the roof, do not allow the accumulation of roof debris, such as leaves or pine needles. Debris should be removed in a safe manner by a leaf blower or similar, non-abrasive method. The air flow should be directed down the slope to avoid driving debris under the edges of the shingles. Keep the gutters clear to promote proper water drainage.
• Periodic roof cleaning may be needed to keep the roof free of moss and algae growth. If keeping debris off the roof does not prevent moss and algae growth, kill the growth by applying a 50:50 mix of liquid chlorine bleach and water. Allow the solution to dwell on the surface (15 to 20 minutes) and then rinse thoroughly with
low pressure water. Extended dwell times may be necessary to kill the moss, however avoid letting the solution dry completely as this may prevent complete rinsing. Repeat the chlorine treatment as needed. After the moss is dead, it will loosen with time until it can be blown off the roof with any other roof debris. Take proper precautions to protect landscaping and surrounding areas from the chlorine bleach solution. Use the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) when working with chlorine bleach.
• We do not recommend the use of commercially available cleaning solutions or concentrates, regardless of whether they purport suitability for use on roofs, as our experience has shown that many of these products may damage our shingles or the overall integrity of the roof system. The only cleaning method we do recommend is
the bleach/water solution used in the manner outlined above.
• Avoid other cleaning practices, as they may damage the shingles and void coverage under the terms of the PABCO® Limited Shingle Warranty. This includes, but is not limited to, the use of acids, detergent powders, solvents, and any other material that does not rinse cleanly off the roof. Do not clean roofs with a power
washer, or any other pressurized water device, with or without chemicals, or use abrasive cleaning methods such as a brush or broom.
• The roof surface must be protected from over spray or staining from other trades, such as painting, stucco, or masonry, as there may be no way to remove these foreign materials without damaging the shingles.
• Do not apply paints or coatings to the shingles.
• Periodically inspect the roof for damage and debris, typically each spring or after extreme weather. Repair roof damage promptly to avoid further damage.
• Safety must be the first priority when working on a roof. Observe every necessary precaution, safety guideline, and safe work practice, or have a roofing professional do the work.
This information on Remove Pine Needles From Roofs was take from this bulletin.
Remove pine needles from roofs as often as needed. This could be 4 or 5 times a year. Safety is the most important thing as being on a roof is a dangerous thing. Most falls are from ladders and these occur when getting on or off the roof. When you go to remove pine needles from roofs, learn the safest way to do the job first.
What You Need to Know About 6″ Rain Gutters
The roof is among the most important, but frequently neglected parts of the house. It has the significant component and that’s the 5″ or 6″ rain gutters, which performs different functions, from protecting the house basement to the topsoil and other parts where damages due to the rain are possible.
Rain gutters are mainly composed of 2 main parts – the gutter and the downspout. There are also 2 kinds of rain gutters – seamless and sectional. The latter is pop riveted together if it is aluminum. If the rain gutters are galvanized or copper they can be pop riveted or soldered together. The seamless type features seams for the downspouts and corners. As the seamless type lasts longer and is leak proof, it’s preferred by many people these days. Soldered copper rain gutters will last the longest, but the cost keeps it from being the preferred material. A professional contractor is needed to manufacture the 6” seamless gutter on site.
What is the purpose of 6″ rain gutters?
As its name suggests, a rain gutter is a trough situated at the bottom edge of the roof to gather and control rain water run-off. This way, the foundation of the house is protected from becoming flooded by water. Rain gutters come in various shapes, types and sizes. These include half-round or U shapes and K configurations.
Many residential rain gutters are available in 2 sizes – 5” and 6” and are made of galvanized steel, copper or aluminum. The usual 5” K-style rain gutters come with 2” by 3” downspouts. 6” rain gutters, on the other hand, use a 3” by 4” downspout.
One foot of a 5” inch K-style rain gutter can hold 1.2 gallons of water. For the 6” rain gutters, it can hold 2.0 gallons of water. Seamless aluminum is the most common residential gutter type. Initially only offered in silver, early aluminum rain gutters were painted white and ultimately painted in different colors to match the roof, trim and house siding, making rain gutters not just useful, but also a design feature.
Shopping For 6″ Rain Gutters
The most common materials are copper, aluminum, and galvanized steel. Determine which material suits your home. Steel is more affordable than copper, but it’s not as durable. Copper can be expensive and is used for certain types of houses, it is the most attractive. But regardless of the material you choose, make sure to pick the thickest material that you can afford. Keep in mind that the thicker the gutter material, the more durable and stronger it will be.
When shopping for rain gutters, the size is always an important consideration. Gutters are usually available in 5″ and 6″ sizes. 6″ rain gutters are best for those people with larger roofs as they can hold more water. If you live in an area that experiences a lot of rainstorms, you may consider using 6″ rain gutters.
Another consideration is the type of rain gutter you will get. The most popular type is the K-style, but you can also go for square-shape and half-round ones. Your choice will depend on your home’s design. Copper gutters are left in their natural state. The patina over the years will give your home a look of distinction. If using aluminum or galvanized you will need to pick a color. You may pick a color to match the current color of the roof. The most common choice is to match the color of the trim of your home. Another choice can be to pick an accent color that is different then the trim of your home.
The Purpose Of 6″ Rain Gutters
You 6″ rain gutters will serve 2 purposes. First to protect your home from the damage that can be caused by water. Second rain gutters will give your home a look of class. Pick a color and size that will make you proud of your home.
Spring Gutter Cleaning
Spring is just around the corner. Are your gutters ready? The main and primary task of the gutters is to divert the rain away from your home and the foundation. It is important that you do the spring gutter cleaning to prepare for the upcoming rainy season. Experts say that spring gutter cleaning must be done in order to avoid roof damage and costly repairs.
It’s that time of year when a spring gutter cleaning is almost always needed, especially with the new shedding of leaf debris and seeds from spring budding branches. Recent winter storms can also blow branches, pine needles and roofing debris into gutters, causing potential rainwater overflow. Also the winds of February take their toll on your gutter system also. These repairs need to be done to allow for proper drainage.
Spring is coming fast. Meaning there are lots of home projects needing your attention. And one part of your home that is overlooked most often is in the gutters. Spring gutter cleaning is an essential part of keeping your home in a good condition. For busy homeowners, spring gutter cleaning is perhaps taken for granted.
The main issue is, a lot of homeowners delay spring gutter cleaning until there is an issue, or so much debris has gathered in the gutter. Sad to say, taking for granted the gutter or waiting until you notice an issues prior to fixing it will make the situation worse, especially during the spring gutter cleaning season.
If the gutter is clogged it can wreck your home with water drainage. This damage can be to roofing, fascia, and soffit and even start leaking directly into the home. Moreover, water damage could ruin the foundation of the house that can lead to serious problems. You have to avoid this from happening.
Some of the advantages of spring gutter cleaning take account of the following:
· It keeps your home safe from water damage.
· It prevents the birds, termites, mosquitoes from creating their nesting places.
· It keeps the beauty and value of the property.
Spring Gutter Cleaning Guides
- Start through scooping out twigs, loose leaves, pine cones, mud and any debris which can clog up the gutter.
- Pay attention to cleaning out the drain spout in order to release water build up from previous rain.
- Utilize a water hose and then spray your gutter to eliminate stubborn mud and dirt. Make sure to use a hose that is capable to produce lot of force so as push properly debris out of the gutter.
- Dissembling the downspout may be necessary to clear and clean hard to reach corners and eliminate clogs.
Spring gutter cleaning takes account of getting up on your roof where falls from defective ladders can happen. The suggestion of many experts is to get the service of reliable and skilled rain gutter technician in order to avoid injuries and at the same time to make sure that the job is done fast and accurate. A lot of companies offer spring gutter cleaning services and upkeep.
Maintain a schedule of fall and spring gutter cleaning every year. A lot of gutter cleaning companies even have a yearly program wherein homeowners can sign up to have regular gutter cleanings. Some homes may need their gutters cleaned more often. This will keep you and your property safe from clogged gutters and the water damage from clogged gutters.
Gutter Systems Part Of Home Maintenance
Home maintenance is an integral component of our lives and as homeowners it is very important to ensure that our house is in tiptop shape. We cannot stick to the old adage, “if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it” mentality given that it is not simply rational to let the house fall apart. The “it’s still okay” syndrome will do more harm than good and will be very costly for us in the long run.
The most common repair and maintenance project on any house is the roof and gutter system. This is due to the fact that these sections are the most exposed part to extreme weather conditions. No matter how tough and expensive the materials you used for these, Mother Nature will definitely take a toll on it whether you like it or not.
Most frequently replaced between these two are the gutters. Over time, the gutter system usually gets damaged due to the volume of water and accumulation of debris like leaves, twigs and stuff. If you try to analyze it, the look and feel of a house is very much dependent on the state of its gutters. A leaking and damaged gutter system appears to generate an impression that the house is very old and poorly maintained. It immediately brings down the value of the house and it also lowers the aura of the human inhabitants.
This is the reason why, this needs to be immediately fixed even before it is fully broken. Remember, it’s a system. One panel breaks down, everything else follows.
Types Of Gutter Systems
The common issue here is cost and it is always the main barrier for it to be fixed. There are two alternatives to choose from when replacing and installing the gutter system. First, there is the seamless gutter system, which is commonly installed by professionals and the other, the traditional pre-made gutters that you can buy from any hardware store. Both systems can be installed by a professional or by a handyman like yourself.
The most common is aluminum given that they don’t rust similar to the old galvanized gutters. There are several colors but white and brown are the standard trim. Custom colors are available to match your house.
Seamless gutter and Traditional Pre-Made gutter have both pros and cons. Seamless gutter systems have lesser tendencies to develop leaks because they are made on-site. The only places they can leak are at the end caps or a miter. If you are planning on installing them yourself, this will raise another problem. You will need to find a contractor with a gutter machine that is willing to come out and run out the seamless gutters. The pre-made gutters need to be short enough for you to haul from the store to your home. These lengths can be from 10’ – 30’. The choice of hangers will be limited by the store stock. Buying on line will give you the largest choice.
Every joint is an increased chance of a leak. Seamless gutter system is your best choice when doing home maintenance.
Why You Need to Maintain Your Gutters
Do you hate home repairs? I don’t think many of us really like them, but they are a necessary part of owning your own home. One of the most important tasks of maintaining your home is the need to clean your gutters, especially prior to, and even during winter. Clogged and badly maintained gutters can cause you more trouble than you may think.
First let’s understand the purpose of a gutter. Its primary function is to remove moisture away from the house and direct it to a place where it will cause no damage to the home or to the property in general. A badly directed water flow could lead to erosion in the driveway or landscaping and that is no good either.
Failure to maintain your gutters leads to four primary problems:
Gutter damage: If gutters are not properly maintained, then they will eventually become blocked by debris such as leaves and dirt. This debris does not allow water to flow through the gutter, causing it to build up and eventually overflow. The overflow will lead to sagging in the gutter which will cause permanent damage to the gutter itself. Over time, these sections will deteriorate so much that they will break away and leave gaps within your gutter system.
House Damage: By not maintaining your gutters, you actually risk causing damage to your home. There are many ways that water can damage your home. As I mentioned before, if water is not directed away from the home it can seep under the foundation causing erosion. This can lead to the home leaning or cracking, the driveway cracking, or water flowing into your basement, causing flooding or water damage. If the water is overflowing the gutter system, it can run down walls to your home damaging paint, siding, windows, and window frames. Blockages can also lead to the gutter becoming so heavy that they begin to pull away from the house, causing structural damage to the home and roof, where the gutter was attached. This can lead to water coming into the home, damaging the inner walls and insulation. It also can mean that the affected areas may grow mold and cause a health risk to you and your family.
Roof Damage: As I previously mentioned, blockage like this can cause damage to the roof. If the gutter becomes too heavy that it pulls away from the home, it may also pull away shingles and other roofing materials, causing a leak in your home. This will allow water to enter the home. But this is not the only problem the roof may face. If the water builds up in the gutter, so that it runs under the roof, it may cause rotting. Rotting may lead to the roof collapsing, especially if you live in an area where it is below freezing during the winter. If water is allowed to back up onto the roof and cause rotting, when that water later freezes, it will be heavier and is more likely to cause the roof to give way, leading to very expensive amount of damage.
Unexpected Damage: Not properly maintaining your gutters also has consequences you may not have considered. If you live in a cold weather area, water that accumulates in areas near your home may become frozen, which can lead to injuries from slipping and falling. Water build-up is a great breeding ground for mosquitoes and mold, and can lead to health problems. It also will attract insects that need a moist environment. Those animals may cause other problems to your home, like raccoons getting into your garbage, or squirrels building nests in your walls.
This clearly shows you why it is so important to have your gutters cleaned. It is well worth the investment to make sure you clean your gutters well.
Cleaning gutters prevents repairs
Don’t fall down on the job of keeping your gutters and downspouts clear and in good repair. They may be an “out of sight, out of mind” aspect of your home exterior, but neglecting them can lead to costly repairs.
Here’s a basic guide to gutter maintenance, compiled by our researchers and based on the expertise of gutter pros rated highly by Angie’s List members:
When to check, clean gutters
Fall is a good time to think about gutters, since leaves dropping from trees are a main cause of clogging. But gutters and downspouts can be blocked by other things, too, including pine needles, twigs, “helicopter” maple seeds and even tennis balls.
Experts recommend checking your gutter system at least twice a year, in the spring and in the fall after trees have shed most of their leaves and needles.
Depending on how many trees you have, you may need to clear gutters and downspouts as often as every three months. If you have few trees or your gutters are covered by a screen or other guard-type product, they may need to be cleaned only once a year or every few years.
The cost of neglect
You could pay a price if you ignore periodic inspection and cleaning. As one top-rated gutter professional told our researcher: “Gutter prevention is measured in pennies; repairs are measured in dollars.”
Clogged downspouts and gutters cause water to overflow the gutter, which can damage fascia or soffit boards, erode landscaping, or cause a roof leak, which in turn may create additional exterior or interior damage. Fixing these problems can cost you thousands of dollars. Clogged gutters can also be related to pest and rodent infestation.
Hire or DIY?
If you clean your gutters, be careful when working from a ladder and don’t forget to clear downspouts, too.
Even if you have gutter guards, you may want to hire a professional. Experts say up to 20 percent of leaves and other material can get through a gutter cover, and that experienced workers may be better at removing and reinstalling the guards.
A professional gutter cleaning should include removal of all leaves and other material from the roof, gutters and downspouts, as well as a check of overall gutter condition and repair of any loose gutter spikes. In addition, the person who does the work should leave your yard clear of debris.
Pricing and hiring tips
The cost of gutter cleaning depends on the size and height of your home. Special equipment may be required to clean gutters of a three-story home, for example. Prices range from $75 to $225 for an average home, depending on the length of gutters and height of house. Most companies charge a flat fee per foot of gutter, but the cost can rise, depending on the complexity of the work.
If you’re thinking about having gutter covers installed, be aware that the price usually starts at around $1,500.
To find a reliable gutter expert, get recommendations from family, friends and neighbors, or check a trusted online review source. Ask for and check references, get several estimates and confirm that the company you hire is properly licensed and adequately insured.
Angie Hicks is the founder of Angie’s List, a resource for local consumer reviews on everything from home repair to health care. Follow her on Twitter at @Angie_Hicks.
Holencik Insulation Now Cleans Gutters
Lehigh Valley Gutter Cleaning provides a wide range of services for residential gutters in Eastern, PA. We are available for professional gutter cleaning, gutter repair and gutter installation, as well as gutter guards and several other home maintenance services. Our customers will enjoy prompt, reliable service from the best trained gutter mechanics in the industry.
Contact us for one time gutter cleaning or regular maintenance. Our expert mechanics use the latest equipment and our proven gutter cleaning techniques to remove the debris that collects in your gutters. We also inspect the entire system for the correct pitch and look for damage at any point in the system.
Gutter cleaning is one of our many services for residential gutters in Lehigh Valley, PA. We offer expert gutter repair, gutter guards and new gutter installation from a team of highly trained gutter mechanics. If you need your gutters replaced, we use only high quality materials that are covered by a twenty year warranty. Our labor is guaranteed for one year.
We will also inspect your roof.
At Lehigh Valley Gutter Cleaning, we provide free quotes for our services. You can request a free quote by filling out the form to the right for fastest service or by calling our office at 484-892-2816.