Homeowners will often agonize over the color of shingle to install, but leave decisions to do with their rain gutter system entirely to a roof contractor, mostly as an afterthought. This isn’t a good idea, however, because most roofing contractors aren’t experts when it comes to guttering. Not only are they likely to recommend replacements when they aren’t strictly necessary, in the absence of specific instructions, they will often simply install whatever conventional system they can find.
This can be an unsatisfactory situation, as quality rain gutters are important to the health of most residential structures, and advances in their design can bring real improvements to the longevity of a home. Rather than simply take your roofing contractor’s word for when to repair to replace, it would be a good idea to gain some understanding of guttering — when to repair, when to replace and the best kinds of systems to replace old systems with.
Find out if a couple of cheap repairs will fix the problem
If your existing gutters are in general good shape but seem to simply have sprung a couple of leaks, a tube of gutter sealant is all you need. It usually runs to about $7.
If you have a couple of areas of sag, a couple of $2 clips or hangers can quickly correct the problem. New end caps or joint connectors take less than $10.
When do you need to replace, rather than repair?
Replacements makes sense in a number of scenarios. When a gutter system has plenty of leaks all over, it’s a sure sign. In many cases, good quality gutters do not deteriorate in such a manner. They usually last 30 years. Thinking about replacements can be a good idea even if you do have a perfectly functional gutter system, however — when what you have is simply too high-maintenance.
Gutters collect a lot more than rainwater. They tend to be magnets for leaves and debris that end up causing major clogs. They need to be cleaned on a regular basis if they are to work. Unfortunately, many homeowners simply never get around to such tasks. The result is overflowing rain gutters that cause damp foundations. Replacing a conventional guttering system with a premium gutter system can greatly help with this problem.
Here’s how these gutters help
Premium gutters by companies such as Leafguard feature a novel design. They come completely covered on top, and admit rainwater through a lengthwise slit on the side. When water falls on the gutter, it is led into the slit on the side. The result is a guttering system that collects and conducts only rainwater, and no debris. Not only does the design help save homeowners an unnecessary chore, it keeps them safer. There are untold numbers of ladder-borne injuries to homeowners attempting to clean their rain gutters.
Leafguard-style gutters last longer as well, simply because they never have any standing water in them. These gutter designs are a marked improvement in gutter technology.
Whether you’re in the market for a guttering system for your home or not, it can could be useful to take a look at the new technologies available. They could save your home.