How To Fix Overflowing Gutters+ Truth About Gutter Covers
This week’s question is from Victor from Arlington Virginia and it’s a question about gutters and gutter guards. Victor asks:
“When we get really hard rains- water runs over my gutters in the front of my house. Is there anything that can be done to stop this? Also I’m really getting tired of cleaning out my gutters but I heard that the gutter covers cause problems. What is the truth about gutter covers: are they worth the expense or not?”
Here’s my answer:
As I mentioned in the video- I start to get anxious when the conversation turns to gutters because I consider them a necessary evil. They are necessary because without them the water would saturate the ground around your house and cause water to go into your basement or crawl space, not to mention water dripping on you when you walk in and out of your house.
They are evil because it’s practically impossible to stop all water from flowing over the gutters during hard rains. I can’t tell you how many calls we get every year from frustrated homeowners looking for an answer to overflowing gutters.
In some cases you can slow down or stop the water from overflowing by using diverters on the outer edge of your gutter. These only typically work on the inside and outside corners where larger amounts of water usually collect.
As far as gutter covers are concerned- I only recommend gutter covers when you have lots of trees around your house and you have a fairly steep pitch to your roof. If you have a low pitched roof, the leaves tend to sit on the top of gutter covers because water does not have enough momentum to wash off the leaves that naturally sit on top of the gutter covers. So if you have a fairly steep roof and you have several trees in your yard, then the “water flow” gutter covers are recommended.
Do not buy the gutter covers that are all-in-one, because they cannot be removed from the gutters for cleaning and debris will eventually get into your gutters and block the downspouts- which will clog the gutters causing water to possibly enter into your home.
Also, the inexpensive wire or mesh gutter covers do not work well because they prevent leaves from flowing over the gutter covers, therefore you have to clean the top of the gutter covers a few times a year- therefore eliminating the purpose of gutter covers.
To sum it up, gutter diverters can help with overflowing water in gutters only on inside or outside gutter corners. I recommend gutter covers if you have a steep pitched roof and you get a “water flow” gutter covers. I do not recommend gutter covers if you have a low-pitched roof and I don’t recommend mesh gutter covers.
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Dave Will did a very thorough and professional inspection of the problem areas of the roof, verified by pictures to explain the problem and prescribe the remedies. The work was completed in a timely manner even though the temperature was in the 90s. He was careful to not hard the landscaping (Japanese maple) and left no mess or indication he was there- except the roof is now worry free. Highly recommend!