Top 6 Reasons Your Gutters Are Leaking

March 15, 2024

Leaky gutters can create a safety hazard and put your home at risk of water damage. Knowing why gutter leaks happen can help you prevent issues in the future. Here are six common causes of leaky gutters.

1. Clogged With Debris

Your gutters need to offer a clear path for water to flow. Leaves, twigs and other debris can accumulate in gutters, obstructing the water’s path to the bottom. The debris acts like a dam that stops water from flowing and causes it to pool in place. The water will leak over the edges of your gutters when the pool becomes too deep. 

2. Jammed With Ice

Moisture pooling in your gutters can become more troublesome as the temperature drops. Some of the water will freeze, forming an ice dam inside the gutter. Frozen water can also dislodge sections of the gutter from each other, since water that seeps into cracks will expand as it freezes. Leftover water in the gutters after a storm can freeze when the temperature drops below freezing.

3. Cracked From Corrosion

Most gutters feature metallic or plastic materials. While these materials are strong, the elements will wear them down over time. The combination of moisture, oxygen and sunlight can weaken your gutters, resulting in rust or corrosion that can lead to holes and cracks. Water will pour through any crack or hole in the bottom of the gutter, so inspect them annually and replace pieces every few years before they become too weak.

4. Tilted Against the Grain  

Your gutters feature a slight slope that allows gravity to pull water toward the downspout. Water will fail to reach the downspout if a section of its path becomes flat or tilts in the wrong direction. Instead, it will pool in place until it overflows over the gutter’s edge. Pooled water also puts more weight on the portion of the gutter that supports it, causing the section to sag. 

5. Loosened at the Joints and Seams

Your gutters could be leaking because they have become loose at their fastening points. The weight of accumulated water or debris can pull your gutters from the wall or dislodge connected sections. When the gutters sag, they will allow even more rain to pool and eventually overflow. When sections pull apart from each other, water can leak through the gap that forms. 

6. Misaligned Against the Home 

Your gutters need to be in a position to catch the water that pours off of your roof. Improper installation can cause your gutters to leak or fail to catch water in the first place. One common installation problem occurs when the installer leaves space between the gutter and a vertical wall. In this case, rain will run down the flashing where the roof and wall meet, then pour through the gap created by the misaligned gutter.

Get Kickout Flashing for Your Gutters 

Kickout Flashing by PBZ can help you mitigate some causes of leaky gutters. Our kickout flashing is a gutter water diverter that uses a piece of aluminum to redirect water falling through the space between the gutters and a wall. This gutter kickout diverter works as a funnel that directs rain from the roof to the gutters, preventing water damage and protecting your home’s foundation.

To get started, request a quote or call (717) 436-2056 for more information.

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