All homes should have a gutter system for draining away water when it rains. Like all other areas of a property,
these gutters require maintenance, they have to be cleaned and inspected for damage, and repaired whenever
necessary. If there is any damage repairs should be carried out as soon as possible. Since gutter maintenance is
time consuming and dangerous without the experience of working at heights and balancing on the top of a ladder,
maybe you would like to find out what damage a leaking gutter can cause? This means that then you can plan the
cleaning and inspection of the gutters accordingly and in advance of any long lasting damage.
Reasons For Leakage
Since the gutter is located on the on the outer edge of your roof, debris, especially dry leaves, twigs, feathers and
moss or algae, will accumulate in the gutter over a period of time. This dirt and debris will cause blockages in the
gutter, reducing its capacity to allow water to flow towards the downpipe or blocking the gutter line completely. So
even if there is a light rain fall, the gutter will become full, and the water will start leaking or overflowing out of the
gutter, slowly (or quickly) damaging anywhere that it lands, instead of getting drained away. Additionally the
guttering can develop cracks and holes, depending on its exposure to the elements and its age. Cracks and holes
are usually invisible to the eye when you are standing below the roof line and are predominantly only noticeable
when there is a significant amount of rain.
If the leaking gutter is located on top of a flat roof, the water which is leaking will accumulate in pools with no
escape route. This will erode the structure of the roof, the metal components may get rusted, the wooden materials
will get rotten, reducing its strength and ability to keep you dry and warm inside your home. If the gutter leakage is
not fixed quickly and continues, water may start leaking through the roof, causing an extensive amount of damage.
The walls may even become damp. If your home has a loft area, the damage can initially be hidden away from
sight, so by the time you have noticed there is an issue, the cost of external repairs has increased to include interior
repairs and the replacement of your possessions too.
Ideally rainwater should be drained away as quickly as possible, since water can erode and corrode the materials
used for construction of the house. The water leaking from the gutter can affect the building structure, and just
drying out may not reverse the damage done. Additionally, the water can potentially have a detrimental reaction
with the construction materials, especially iron and steel; corroding it, and reducing the strength. Exterior wet walls;
render and paint can become discoloured and fall away – which can be very dangerous. Interior paint; may also get
discolored or start peeling off and develop mould and mildew. The integrity of the ceiling may become
compromised; making it unsafe with a possibility to collapse.
Wood is extensively used for constructing homes and buildings. In addition to making supporting structures on the
roof, wood is used for doors and frames, window frames, furniture and other decor. It may also be used in the
garden, for making decking. When all wooden structures are exposed to water over a long period of time,
depending on the protection treatment they have, they will inevitably absorb water, causing rot. The rotting wood,
will disintegrate, and is not safe, so it will have to be replaced, increasing home maintenance expenses.
Some homes have a basement which is used for storing items or an additional room for guests or other activities.
The water from the leaking gutter has been known to accumulate in the basement destroying everything it comes
into contact with, especially if the flooding is not noticed immediately and not repaired quickly. Renovating the
damaged basement so that it is safe to use will also be much more expensive than the initial gutter clear and repair
Stains & Mould
The leaking water from the gutter can cause stains on the interior and exterior walls of the house, ruining the
decoration. Whilst maybe you can live with a slight staining and think that you can worry about that another day, the
next stage of this discolouration will be mould and mildew forming on all the areas where there is damp, and this
will quickly spread. Mould and mildew will have an affect on the air quality, which can also cause respiratory