C – MAINTENANCE IS KEY
Industrial or residential rainwater gutter systems are designed to give many years of reliable service but to achieve this, a regular inspection and routine maintenance program should be undertaken. Prevention is always better than cure and establishing a regular maintenance program is the most effective way of ensuring that serious problems do not arise.
In the course of collecting water, open rain gutters also collect leaves, acorns, pine needles, and other debris which can cause clogs anywhere in the gutter itself or sometimes in the downspouts. In dry conditions clogged gutters are a fire hazard; and during heavy rains, clogged gutters and downspouts can cause rainwater to overflow, potentially causing substantial damage to the building. To keep gutters free of debris, a maintenance program has to be defined. This might vary depending on the climate, but usually, it’s a good idea to maintain at least a twice a year program – clear them out in late fall after most of the leaves have fallen, and in spring to make sure they’re clear for some showers. On locations where the existence of particularities that contribute to a higher probability and quantity of debris inside the gutter, such as for example, the existence of many trees on the surrounding area or the existence of seagulls frequently on the roof, it may be necessary to clean the gutter more frequently.
First of all it is necessary to define the periodicity of the maintenance program depending on the building specificities. Secondly, it is important to define clearly a checklist for any maintenance operation. All maintenance operations should consider at least the following tasks:
- Clean leaves and debris from the inside of gutters
- Clean all downspouts, elbows, and joints
In addition to this, and depending on the project and gutter age, the following tasks should be considered:
- Verify all gutter joints
- Verify screws and all fixing / holding elements
- Look for excessive movement and re-secur or re-pitch when necessary
- Look for parts and accessories that may need to be replaced in order to keep them functioning properly
- Install extra screws or hidden brackets to extend the life of the system a little longer
- Look for signs of rust and address properly these areas
D – WHEN REPAIRS OR RENOVATION ARE REQUIRED: SOLUTIONS
When simply due to age, or due to more specific causes such us improper maintenance, it might came to a scenario where a more deep intervention has to be considered: it might be the case for an intervention with focus only on the gutter joints, or some other specific points, or of an integral renovation of the gutter.
The most common used solution for gutter repairs or gutter renovations are liquid applied solutions. The most frequent difficulties associated with such solutions are its limitation to handle movement – and movement on gutters can be quite significant. Usually such solutions, in order to function properly, need to be applied carefully: the correct thickness of each layer should be respected. The problem is that on such constrained area as a gutter, it is quite hard to assure that a specific thickness of material is being applied, and to maintain this same thickness at all areas where the material is being applied. Typically, if the thickness applied is higher that the recommended, the elasticity of the material will not be able to absorb the expected movement and it will fail; if the thickness of the material is lower than the recommended it will not have the necessary resistance and it will fail prematurely.
If we analyze the offer for non-liquid applied solutions, we can find some solutions on the market with membranes, that are specifically promoted for gutter waterproofing. With membrane solutions usually the quality of the material and its performance is easier to control as this is factory controlled. The downspout of such solutions is that they usually require specialized tools for installation and very specialized labor. As conclusion we may say that there is a lack on the market for efficient, sustainable and easy to install solutions for gutter repairs or renovation.
The Effisus Solutions – A step further
1 – Effisus Titegutter3 – Integrated system for sealing gutter joints
Effisus Titegutter3 is the innovative integrated system for sealing gutter joints. The system’s efficiency and added value are guaranteed by its three waterproofing levels. Their properties give it the capacity of accommodating joint movements originated by structural or thermal expansion.
The system solves, in an efficient and sustainable manner, the common gutter joint sealing job. Due to its speed and ease of application, the job can be done without the need of specialized labour and its completion time is largely reduced. With Effisus Titegutter3, one can reduce the probability of human error, reduce application time and assure gutters’ waterproofness.