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When your gutters are malfunctioning, the real reason may surprise you. Learn why gutters break & schedule a free inspection today!

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When you notice problem signs in and around your Chattanooga home—like puddles around your foundation, gaps between gutters and roof, pests or an inadequate gutter system, and more, what’s your snap judgment? While it may not be the most obvious answer, malfunctioning gutters tend to play a huge factor in all these issues. As your local gutter and foundation expert, we at AFS Repair are here to help you understand why gutter problems happen and what you can do to stop them.

Do These Gutters Look Familiar?

What Causes Gutters To Malfunction?


Gutter clogs are an extremely common cause of many gutter problem signs. Leaves, branches, dirt, mud, and even pest droppings make up the debris that can clog your gutters and downspouts. When water collecting in your gutters has nowhere to drain, it ultimately ends up overflowing over the side of your gutter, or even weighing down and cracking your gutter.  

While unclogging your gutter can prevent future breakage, the damage may already be done if your gutter cracks or bends.  

Improper Installation of Your Gutters  

Just because you have gutters that appear well-functioning, may not always mean that they are. Sometimes, gutters are improperly installed, or may not even be the right type of gutter for your home. Common installation mistakes include gutters being installed at an angle too close to the home, not having a proper gutter pitch (downward slant to promote drainage), or even poor placement on the home.  

These problems are present in many DIY-style gutter installations, or even installations by known companies. At AFS Repair, we’re proud of the high standards we abide by when repairing and installing gutters because we know how stressful it is for homeowners when they malfunction. 

Sloping Gutters 

All gutters have a pitch, which means that they slope slightly downward in order to maintain steady water drainage. However, when your gutters are overly sloped, this can mean big problems for your foundation, crawl space, or basement.  

When your gutters clog too much on one side, or are just old and wearing down, they can begin to noticeably slope to one side; this can cause water to pool up in one area of your home. Water can quickly overwhelm the soil around your home and cause leaking and cracking in your foundation. 

Gutter Joint Separation 

Gutter joints are the seams that connect the multiple pieces of your gutter together. They’re sometimes connected using rivets, caulk, sealant, or even just by popping them together. However, when these seams leak or break, the entire function of your gutter is compromised. This can happen when water weighs down your gutters, or even if holes are punctured through the seams of your gutter.  

Poor Downspout Placement 

Downspouts are a vital part of the anatomy of a gutter; they’re the portion of the gutter where the water can drain out and away from the home. Even if you have completely functioning gutters, poor downspout placement can have the same effect on your foundation as if your gutters are broken. If your downspouts are placed too close to your home, it allows water to pool around the corners of your foundation setting hydrostatic pressure and erosion into motion.  

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