Broken Gutter?

David Robbins on 10 July 2014

How to Tell When Replacement Gutters are More Cost Effective than Guttering Repair.

If your gutters are leaking, it may be a sign of bigger problems – while it may seem like a patch-up job will fix the problems, often leaking is just the tip of the iceberg. As the saying goes, where there’s smoke, there’s fire. And by the same virtue, where there are leaks, there is often rust, which means the gutter is deteriorating.

In these cases, it becomes a question of whether it’s worth repairing the gutters, or if it’s more cost-effective in the long run to invest in replacement gutters. But how can you tell the difference between a minor guttering leak and terminal bleeding? Here’s how to determine whether a one-way ticket to the gutter graveyard is on the cards.

Inspect your gutters thoroughly

Grab the ladder and have a good look for the obvious signs your gutter is a goner:

  • Discolouration on the underside of the gutter. This starts as a white powdery appearance, progressing through to obvious orange rust spots.
  • Small blisters under the paint that give the gutter or downpipe the feel of sandpaper. As with the discoloration above, it’s caused by rust eating through the thickness of the steel.
  • Obvious holes in the gutters or downpipes. These typically occur where the water is pooling.

How old are your gutters?

old broken gutter alcoil

Your guttering may look ok to the naked eye, but If it was installed more than 12 years ago, it’s likely it’s coming towards the end of its lifespan.

Some cheaper materials even need replacement in less than ten years – and if your gutter has already served 20 years, it’s probably living on borrowed time.

How old is your house?

If there are no obvious issues with signs of rust and ageing, there may be problems building structure. This is an issue that mainly affects newer houses – as the building “settles”, the gutters can be bent and warped, causing cracks and stopping the guttering working as a complete system (collecting and controlling rainwater to the downpipes).

If your house is only a couple of years old but your gutters are already springing leaks, it’s a wise move to call a guttering expert. They’ll be able to determine whether replacement is necessary, or if the existing ones can be realigned.

house age alcoil guttering

Consider the actual long-term cost

While sections of your guttering can often be repaired for a smaller sum than a full replacement, it can quite literally be money down the drain. Steel gutters only last so long, so replacing a rusted or holey section is a short term fix – eventually the rest will follow, and you’ll need to replace the whole system anyway.

In this instance, a more cost-effective measure would be to look at replacing with Colorbond or aluminium guttering. Since they don’t rust, they’ll last much longer than steel, meaning a longer lifespan and keeping repairs and maintenance to a minimum. While the upfront investment may seem higher than patch-up repairs, you’ll solve the underlying issues and save far more in the long term.

Call Alcoil on (03) 9887 5822 for a quote on the market’s most cost-effective guttering