What Causes Leaky Gutters?

February 14, 2023

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A Gutter Dripping During Heavy RainWe bet it is annoying when the gutter system you installed to protect your home is not doing its job. In many cases, leaky gutters result from not just one but many causes acting together to worsen the problem.

For example, clogs can lead to sagging gutters and an improper slope. These issues feed off each other to make the problem worse over time, which is why the best way to fix it is to contact a professional as soon as possible.

Still, it is always good to know each cause, so you can keep an eye out on your gutter system and identify the problem before it worsens. So, let's check out the most common causes of leaky gutters, the potential damage these can cause, and the best way to fix them.

Common Causes of Leaky Gutters and How To Fix Them

These issues are so common that you might be familiar with a few. But here, we will break it down and specify each problem, the damage and complications it can cause, and the solution.


  • The Problem
    Clogs are the most common cause of leaky gutters, especially in areas with heavy rainstorms and hurricanes, like Florida.

    Clogs happen when small twigs, leaves, pine needles, dirt, dead insects, and other debris accumulate in your gutter or downspout.

  • The Damage
    Clogs prevent water from flowing to the downspout; consequently, it tends to pool in your gutter, adding extra weight. Over time, this weight will cause your gutters to sag and lose their proper slope. Then, even after removing the clogs, water won't flow as it should and will spill over the gutter's edge during heavy rain. If left unattended for too long, these leaks can potentially cause damage to your roof and rot your fascia.

  • The Solution
    Check your gutters after rainstorms or hurricanes, and remove any debris that might have accumulated in the gutter or the downspout. Also, make sure you hire a professional to clean your gutter system at least twice per year. After all, cleaning your gutters is a bothersome task, but cleaning your downspout means completely removing it, which makes it downright complicated. That is why a professional rain gutter cleaning service is your best bet.

Cracks and Holes

  • The problem
    According to LeafGuard, "at various times and for various purposes, gutters have been made from a number of different materials." The most common ones are aluminum, wood, copper, and steel. Some of these materials are stronger and more long-lasting than others. Still, all of them will show signs of wear over time and might develop cracks and small holes that will eventually get bigger.

  • The Damage
    Cracks and holes will cause water to slip through and down to your property's foundation. If left unattended, these will grow bigger and bigger. If your gutters have corroded in only a small section, you could easily replace that section. But, if you don't fix it in time, corrosion will spread through the rest of your gutter system, and you might have to replace the whole thing. Talk about a significant punch to your wallet!

  • The Solution
    Fixing small cracks and holes is very easy. If you catch the problem in time, all you would have to do is apply a waterproof sealant or caulk over the damage. However, suppose you didn't spot it in time. In that case, you will probably need the help of an experienced rain gutter repair service provider.


  • The Problem
    Improperly sealed joints will separate over time. And, in old gutter systems that have not been maintained properly, the joints might separate due to the sealant no longer being watertight.

  • The Damage
    Leaking gutter joints can cause many problems. Dampness in your walls and roof is one of them. If that happens, then you might start to see mold and mildew. Depending on the gap's severity, water might also damage your home's foundation.

  • The Solution
    Gutter joint gaps are easy to fix. In most cases, you can replace the sealant; in others, you might need to replace the joint.

Loose Gutters

  • The Problem
    Gutters come loose when the hangers deteriorate. It could be that the hanger has bent or that the screws or pieces used to attach it have come loose. This causes your gutters to tilt wrong, and water no longer flows as it should. Besides, where the screws have come loose, water will seep through and leak onto your walls and foundation.

  • The Damage
    You can probably see a pattern now and how these problems usually lead to dampness, mold, and structural damage. Lose hangers are no exception, and when leaks occur due to them, you will have to deal with all these problems.

  • The Solution
    Usually, all you need to do is to replace the screws, nails, or hangers. However, if these have come loose because there was too much weight on the gutter due to water pooling and clogs, then simply tightening them might do the trick.

Improper Slope

  • The Problem
    Gutters work by directing water to the downspout. But for this process to go smoothly, there has to be a very exact slope. With a too-tilted gutter, the water will flow too fast and spill over. Not tilted enough, and it will pool and sag your gutter.

  • Technician Fixing a Gutter's Slope
  • The Damage
    If your gutter is not tilted enough, you'll get pooling water that will weigh down your gutters, bend them, and loosen the hangers. If your gutters tilt too much, water will fall too fast and spill over the downspout. Then, you'll get all the same problems as if you had a leak.

  • The Solution
    The correct slope for gutters is inch for every 10 feet. Ensuring your gutters have the proper slope is one of the hardest things to accomplish, and it's one of those moments when experience really pays off. If you installed your rain gutters by yourself and these don't have the correct slope, call us, and we will solve the problem for you.
Now, you might feel a little overwhelmed after knowing everything that can go wrong with your gutters are the costly consequences. But remember that gutters are still the best way to protect your home against heavy rain. As for all these issues, there's an easy way to prevent them.

Prevent Leaky Gutters With the Experts From Miami Gutter Cleaning

For every gutter problem, we are the solution. Miami Gutter Cleaning is a family-owned business with over 20 years of combined experience. Our gutter cleaning company provides quick, budget-friendly gutter and downspout cleaning for residential homes and commercial properties.

We offer gutter cleaning and repair services in South Florida and surrounding areas. Our mission is to provide our customers the highest quality gutter cleaning and repair services with timely completion of work, superior service, and guaranteed satisfaction.

We are licensed and insured, and all our employees undergo a rigorous background check. Our professional craftsmen are highly skilled and trustworthy.

Get your gutter cleaning or repair quote today. Just fill out our online contact form blow or call us at (786) 676-8259 to get started and prevent all gutter problems with regular maintenance and flawless repair!

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