5 Ways to Prevent Overflowing Gutters Grand Rapids, MI

Overflowing gutters will splash water onto the side of your home. This creates the perfect environment for mold and mildew.

As soon as you notice an issue with your gutters, give us a call. The sooner you call, the sooner we can prevent water, mold, and rot damage to your home.

Here are the top 5 ways to prevent overflowing gutters.

1. Clean Gutters and Downspouts

When was the last time you cleaned the gutters? We recommend cleaning your gutters in the spring and fall.

With winter right after fall, all those leaves will get crammed in and compacted in your gutters. Then, when the snow melts, it could damage your roof if the water can’t flow through and out your downspout.

Related: How Does Snow and Ice Affect My Roof? →

If you have pine trees around your home, you’ll need to clean out the gutters about four times a year. Evergreen trees shed their needles a lot and can clog your gutters.

The weight of pollen, twigs, pine needles, and leaves could be enough to rip gutters off the side of your house. For example, dead leaves will soak up rain like a sponge and increase how much weight is being put on your gutters. 

When you're done removing the dead leaves and other debris, use a hose to rinse out your gutters. This will not only help clean your gutters but ensure the water drains through the downspout.

If water does not flow through your downspout at the same rate as your hose, it could mean you have a clog. To remove a clog in the downspout use a high-pressure water sprayer or a plumbing snake to bust up clumps.

2. Install Leaf Guard Gutters

Tired of having leaves accumulate in your rain gutters? Ask our gutter contractors if a leaf guard is appropriate for your home. 

A leaf guard stops leaves and other large debris from accumulating in your gutters. But keep in mind that you'll still need to inspect and clean your leaf guard gutters at least twice a year.

Failing to do so could result in a pileup of small debris that will absorb moisture over time. This can lead to mold and wood rot near your gutters.

While gutter screens filter out leaves, they still let in pollen and pine needles. It is less than usual, but it is something to keep an eye on if you live in a wooded area.

3. Inspect Your Gutter’s Slope (Pitch)

Lay a level across the mouth of the gutters to check the tilt of your gutters. A gutter’s slope should be around 1/4th of an inch for every ten feet of gutter.

If your gutter slopes more than this, the water may move too fast and splash against your house. But less than the recommended amount could result in not moving the water at all or moving it too slow. Slow-moving water gets stuck easier, which can backlog your gutter system. 

To fix your gutter’s slope, you’ll most likely need a screwdriver. The best method is to focus on adjusting your downspout. Then translating that change into your gutter lining.

Remember to keep the 1/4th for 10 formula in mind. If you have twenty feet of gutter, you may want to adjust your downspout by half an inch.

If you have a gutter with a high point in the middle, you’ll want to do the formula for each half. (You could also call us and save yourself the hassle.)

4.Install Splash Guards

A splash guard directs water away from your home and prevents mud stains on the exterior. But rainwater can splash over the sides of your gutters if the roof valleys are too steep.

Splash guards on your roof and at the base of your downspout are important for protecting your home. If you notice streams of water hit the ground and kick up residue, they could be causing siding damage.

To know if your home may need guards, do a perimeter check after heavy rainfall. If you see dirt has splashed up on the side of your house, you may want to look into getting splash guards. 

5. Choose the Right Size Gutter System

Are your gutters overflowing despite being clean and free of clogs? If so, the system may be too small for the amount of water flowing off your roof. We'll measure the size and slope of your roof to make sure we install a gutter system big enough to handle runoff.

Do You Need Help With Overflowing Gutters?

Are your gutters in need of repair or replacement? As a Grand Rapids remodeling contractor, we’d be more than happy to help! To request a design consultation for gutter installation, call Renaissance Exteriors & Remodeling at (616) 446-1248

This blog post has been updated.