Gutters are just about the inconvenience factor of having rain run off splash people on their way in an out of a building. They're also an important structural element channeling water so it doesn't find its way into basements or damaging walls, or pooling and leading to longer term problems on a roof. So we take gutters seriously, both designing and installing new or better gutter systems and replacing damaged or timeworn gutters that aren't performing as well as they should.
When to Replace Gutters
The best time to check gutters, whether residential or commercial is in the middle of a rainstorm. That's when you'll see water flowing where it shouldn't or quickly notice where blockages are happening that lead to overflow. If the gutters aren't working in heavy rainfall they need attention and the earlier we are called in to do that work the greater the chance that we'll be able to effect a few cheaper repairs rather than have to recommend full replacement. Our relationship with our clients is a long term one so we will always explain honestly whether guttering really needs replacement or if there is a cheaper solution. Equally we will be clear when repairing guttering is a waste of time and money because problems will only resurface again shortly.
Things to Watch For
As well as obvious water flow where there shouldn't be the signs that gutters need attention include sagging or pulling away from the roof. Stains on the walls are another good sign there is a problem with the guttering and stains on basement walls are often down to improper irrigation.
Gutters can be made of many different materials depending on the style of the building and the likely wear caused by water. Copper gutters last for fifty years or so and are naturally resistant to mold and algae but cost more than galvanized steel. Aluminum or galvanized steel gutters usually need replacement or significant repair after about twenty years. Aluminum comes in different thicknesses and so we gauge the likely flow and strength needed before recommending the exact type of metal we use for gutters.
The classic half round gutter gives great flow characteristics but if installed without leaf guards it can be prone to clogging in fall. Because they are curved they don't fit flat against fascia or flat fronted walls so they need brackets to hold them in position and that means another level of structure that needs to be properly installed and cared for if it is going to function correctly. Most modern guttering is the popular K gutter so called because in cross section it looks a little like the letter K. K gutters look great from outside because they have a molded appearance that comes in a number of styles but have the practicality of a straight and flat side that fits directly onto the fascia or wall. If you're looking for a unique look then talk to us about custom fascia gutters which are built to order to one size (so no seams to leek) and in the style of your choice.