Signs of Gutter Problems

Gutter cleaning and maintenance ensures that your roof gutter is in good condition and avoids all those pesky problems that await. Other than the obvious hole in the gutter, there’s other signs of bad gutters that can help you act early before disaster strikes. Here are signs of gutter problems to keep your eyes open for:

1. Rusting of the Gutter

rusting gutter

Most gutters are made out of metal. But they’re usually coated with a waterproof layer that would make them last for the job. However, the layer will wear off. Sometimes, it can be as simple as a scratch from a falling branch. 

Once the layer is scraped off, it gets easier for rain to catalyst rusting. If you can see the rusted spot on one section, then this is one huge sign of bad gutters that you should probably call a guy in for rain gutter maintenance. 

You can also look around the seams of the gutter. The connecting part is usually the weak point and it’s pretty common to see that this part will rust first. 

2. Paint Peeling

paint peeling

Water can be one of the main reasons why the paint on your wall is peeling. When the surface of the wall is constantly exposed with water, it will start to seep into the paint. The high humidity will increase the moisture build up on the walls. 

That’s when it will separate the paint layer from the wall. You will see that there will be bulging or flaking of the paint coating. 

This is a typical scenario that you can see in your bathroom. But, if you spot such a thing outside the wall of your house especially near where the gutters are, it’s possible that the water is spilling from the gutter. This is another sign that you need gutter repair. 

What’s most alerting is to spot cracking or  peeling paint on the walls of your room. This means the water has found its way into your house. If you do happen to spot it, it’s best to find your roof repairman for a check as soon as you can. It can be caused by gutter failure or roof leak. 

3. Mold Growth 

Mold loves humid areas. If you somehow spotted mold growth up in the attic of your house or outside the wall, it can be a sign of leakage. Looking out for mold growth can be a good way to find any signs of roof leaking or gutter problems.

In Malaysia weathers, the growth of mold can be quite difficult because of the hot temperature. But, it’s not exactly impossible either. This is especially true during the rainy season. It just takes a few days of rain. Then, the moisture level will remain in the attic considering how poorly ventilated the attic is. 

You can also check out the attic from time to time. If you spot a dark stain on the wooden structure of the attic, it can be a sign that mold has grown there before. This also means that there may be a leak somewhere. If it’s not your roof, then it’s your gutter that’s giving you the trouble. 

Routine roof gutter maintenance will help you avoid potential factors such as rusting gutter, clogged gutter or even blocked gutter before they escalate into bigger problems. 

4. Uneven or Sagging Roof Gutter

overflowing gutter

Crooked or unbalanced roof gutters will cause ineffectiveness in the draining process. The water will not be able to be directed to the downspout effectively. It might overflow easily at the low point of the roof gutter. 

This sagging of the roof gutter will cause further damage if left unchecked. So, be sure to look around the house and check out your gutters. If you spot any suspicious parts, it’s best to give a call to your local roof repair company and schedule a maintenance. 

5. Gaps Between Gutter And Roof

For the next sign of bad gutters, check out if there are gaps between the gutter and roof that wasn’t there before. Gutters can only perform their best when placed close to the roof. Under certain circumstances, the gutter hangers which hold the gutters in its rightful position could become loose or break as it has rusted away. 

Consequently, the weight of the water will pull the gutter away from your house. This gap will enable the water to flow to the wrong side of your house. As you look outside the window when it rains, you will notice the water flowing down the front of the window like you’re in a tropical staycation somewhere in Bali, Indonesia. That’s a very bad sign of gutter problem. 

So, always be on the lookout especially right after a heavy downpour. The gutter might seem balanced and not rusted at any point. But, the gutter hanger is not that obvious to the sight. It could give way to the heavy punishment of the elements. 

6. Discoloration of The Gutter

Plastic gutters are becoming a popular choice as it does not rust and is generally perceived as a better option than metal gutters. However, it’s not entirely invincible to the wear and tear as time goes. 

The hot weather causes it to expand and contract throughout the different period of time in a day. Eventually, some part will give in. The seams are usually the common weak point that we can look at.

If you see discoloration of the white plastic gutter, it’s probably due to the accumulation of rusts or minerals from the rain water that is washed down from the roof. This also means that the water must come from somewhere. This could be a sign of gutter problem. To be on the safe side, perform a check on the gutter to make sure there is nothing to worry about.

This method would only be workable for white plastic as the discoloration can be spotted easier. However, if your plastic gutter is of darker color, it can prove to be difficult to see. 

Depending on the color of your gutter, this sign of gutter problem can be hard to spot.

7. Grass Growing in Gutters

grass in gutter

The next sign of gutter problem to look out for is growing grass in the gutter. The gutter is meant to drive rain water to the down spout. Having grass growing inside of it will block it and cause the water to spill from the gutter when it rains. 

The extra weight from the growing grass will also put extra pressure on the integrity of the gutter. If you happen to find screws or fasteners, that means the gutter is breaking down.

8. Rain Water Overflowing at Corner

gutter corner

Try to observe your gutters when it rains. Check if there’s any overflowing of water from the corner of your gutter. Water overflowing at the corner is usually an indicator of blocking at the gutter – moss, dirt, branch can be some of them.

Sometimes, the corner of the gutter is where the downspout is usually located. Some people choose to install a downspout filter to prevent debris from falling into the hole. Water overflowing at this area is a clear sign that the filter has blocked a substantial amount of debris. Thus, reducing the efficiency of the water flow. 

You also may spot mildew growing at this specific part of the gutter. These all are a bunch of signs of gutter problems that need urgent fixing.

9. Unexplained Nails, Fastener or Screws on the Ground

If you mysteriously discovered nails, fasteners or screws on the ground especially right under the gutter, it’s probably because the gutter is getting loose. Rusty nails also tend to give way easily when trying to hold the extra weight of water from heavy weather storms. 

This is a sign of gutter problems that you must not ignore. The structural strength of the gutter is jeopardized. This could risk sagging gutters or even the breaking down of it. The whole gutter part could come off and might cause injuries.

10. Animals Near the Gutters

squirrel on gutter

You can love nature, and sometimes feel awe to be visited by a friendly squirrel. But seeing harmful pests such as squirrels, rats or mice by the gutter is not a good sign. This may indicate that there is water standing by that spot of the gutter and the animals are there for the water party. 

Sometimes, blockage of leaves and twigs will also turn it into a favorable habitat that pests love. Be aware and notice if that particular spot of the gutter is always visited by these pests. It can be a sign of a bad gutter that is cooking up a storm.

In conclusion, here are the signs of gutter problems:

    • rusting of the gutter
    • paint peeling on the external wall
    • mold growth in the attic
    • uneven or sagging roof gutter
    • gaps between gutter and roof
    • discoloration of the gutter
    • grass growing in gutters
    • rain water overflowing at corner of the gutter
    • unexplained nails, fastener or screws on the ground
    • animals near the gutters

We hope that this article will help you to identify better on the signs of gutter problems that your house might have. If you have spotted any of these in the checklist, it’s time to give us a call at Roof Repair Malaysia for a thorough gutter maintenance! 

Have any unusual signs that we didn’t list down? Share your experience with us in the comments!

Seen any of those listed in our Signs Of Gutter Problems Checklist?

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Roof Repair Malaysia

Roof Repair Malaysia provides gutter maintenance services throughout Penang, Kuala Lumpur and Selangor. Don’t hesitate to contact us for enquiries!