Seamless gutters are preferred over more traditional types, and for good reason – they are much less prone to leaks. This doesn't mean that they don't require any maintenance, though. Winter can be especially hard on gutters. The following tips can help you avoid some common winter pitfalls with your seamless gutters.
Tip #1: Fall Cleaning
Debris inside the gutters can block the downspouts. This means that the gutters will back up and overflow. This is a minor problem when it rains since water can flow down siding and get underneath the underlayment. It can become a major problem when it snows or freezes. This is because the water backs up and then freezes at the edge of the roof, resulting in an ice dam. As the ice melts on the bottom, it can seep into your attic. Cleaning out the gutters and downspouts each fall prevents these issues.
Tip #2: Inspect For Leaks
Seamless gutters aren't necessarily leak proof. There is a seam at the corner of each gutter where it connects to a downspout. These are typically sealed with a silicone caulk. In the fall, run some water from a hose down the gutters. Do this on a dry day. Inspect the underside of the gutters, especially at the corner caulk lines, for any moisture seepage. If you find a small leak, dry out the gutters and reseal the spot with a bit of silicone caulk.
Tip #3: Check The Angle
One problem that can occur, especially when cleaning, is that the angle of the gutter becomes compromised. Gutters should angle slightly toward a corner so water flows quickly toward the downspout. Use a level to make sure the gutters have a slight slope each fall. Perform the check again in spring, since snow weight can also level out the gutters. You can adjust the gutters by carefully lifting up on the installation clips to raise one section, or you can have a gutter professional adjust them more accurately.
Tip #4: Mind the Gap
Gutters should fit beneath your eaves so that water comes off the roof line and into the gutters. Sometimes, gutters shift and the water instead runs between the gutters and wall. A tell-tale sign of this is the formation of icicles between wall and gutter. When this happens, you will need to reposition the gutters so they are under the eaves. Unfortunately, you may need to wait until the icicles melt before you can do this.
For more assistance, consider contacting a professional like those at A - 1 Seamless Gutters Inc.