Just like your roof, your home’s gutters can age and wear out over time. While most of us don’t want to think about a gutter replacement, and while most gutter systems can last 20 years or more, there is a point where it becomes time to replace your gutters. If you’re not sure what to look for when it comes to gutter repair or replacement, here are 5 signs your gutters may be reaching the end of their lifespan:

#1 Cracks, Splits, or Separated Gutters

The seams where two pieces of gutter connect are the weakest points of any gutter system. If you start to see your gutters pulling apart at those seams, your gutters are probably close to the end of their lifespan. Cracks and splits elsewhere in the gutter are also signs that your gutters are wearing out. Even if you see a small crack or split, it’s worth it to start thinking about gutter replacement soon. Cracks and splits will only grow over time, especially when colder weather comes and ice is able to seep into and expand in those cracks. 

Looking for a new gutter system to replace the old? Seamless gutters are a great investment. They don’t have the same weak spots as a seamed gutter system and can offer a much longer lifespan. 

#2 Peeling Paint or Rust

Most gutters are painted or coated for weatherproofing. While peeling paint might not seem like the worst problem to have, it’s an indicator that it’s time to replace your gutters. Your gutter’s paint protects them from rain and water, and when that starts to flake away they’ll begin to rust. 

If you’re already noticing spots of rust or rust flakes on the ground outside your home, you’ll want to replace your gutters sooner rather than later. Rust spots quickly turn into holes, and you don’t want rainwater seeping through rusty spots on your gutters — it can leave big, hard-to-remove spots on your home’s siding, not to mention that holes in your gutters can cause water damage.

#3 Gutters are Sagging or Pulling Away from the Roof

As you might expect, sagging gutters are a bad sign. Gutters that are sagging are too heavy for their original supports or fasteners. That can mean two things: 

  1. Your gutters are too full of water. They’re not draining and likely need to be replaced. (Clogged gutters can also start to sag, and could benefit from a gutter cleaning. But, if they’ve started to sag significantly, you’re looking at a replacement.)
  2. Your gutter fasteners have worn out. Over time, the fasteners that connect your gutters to your home can wear out. When that happens, your gutters will begin to sag and pull away from the roof. In all cases, it’s a clear sign it’s time to replace gutters. 

If your gutters are sagging or starting to pull away from the roof, it’s a sign they’ve become too old to properly perform their job — directing water safely away from your home. You can only re-fasten them to your home so many times. If they continue to sag or pull away from the roof, it’s usually a sign that your gutters are done, or that the fascia board on your roof has started to rot. Either way, a gutter replacement is in order. 

#4 Dirt Channels or Pooling Water

Take a look at the ground below your gutters. What does it look like? If you notice big empty channels where dirt has been washed away, or pooling water along the edge of your house, near the foundation, it’s probably time to replace your gutters. 

This is another sign your gutters aren’t able to properly direct water away from your house. These signs show that water is spilling over the gutter, rather than running through the gutter system and into downspouts. It’s important to replace gutters soon if you notice this problem. The more water that spills over gutters and near your foundation, the greater your risk of a flooded basement. 

#5 Basement Flooding

One key sign it’s time to replace gutters that many people don’t know about is basement flooding. Properly functioning gutters work to direct water away from the landscaping around your house and foundation. When your gutters aren’t working properly anymore, water can spill over the edges of the gutter, where it’s able to seep into your foundation, and then your basement. 

If you’ve been noticing a lot of water pooling in the basement when it rains, or if your basement has flooded recently after a storm, your gutters could be the problem. 

Your gutters are an integral component of your home and your roofing system. They help maintain your foundation and your landscaping by directing water safely away from your house. When your gutters reach the end of their life, they’re no longer able to do their job. If you don’t replace gutters quickly, you may begin to notice your basement flooding, water damage on your siding, and more. If you’ve noticed any of the following 5 signs, it might be time to look into gutter replacement. 

Time to replace your gutters? Talk to the experts at Werner Roofing. We install top-of-the-line seamless gutters that minimize the upkeep you need to do and keep your home looking great. Give us a call at 616-844-5382, or contact us online for a free gutter replacement estimate.

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How do you know when it’s time for a new roof? The only way to be sure of your residential roof’s current condition is to have a licensed professional personally inspect it. Werner Roofing is proud to offer free roof inspections for every client, so you can be sure of your roof’s condition. Every Werner Roofing inspection comes complete with our promise: “We won’t recommend or sell a roof replacement unless it’s necessary.” 

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