As snow accumulated on the roof begins to melt, it needs a drainage system so the water formed can flow away from the building foundation to avoid possible damage. An eavestrough system is exactly what your roof needs. An eavestrough is an effective water drainage system that will prevent roof rotting, yard flooding, and other structural damages. However, installing an eavestrough isn’t enough; you will need to maintain it and make sure other components of your gutter system are well cared for and maintained.
With over decades of experience in carrying out renovation work, Fort Sask Reno Inc. has faced various challenges with home roofing systems where poor roof situations could be avoided if homeowners were aware of a few details. To help you avoid major disasters with your gutter system, we have compiled a list of common mistakes to avoid when dealing with an eavestrough.
1. Overlooking the drip edge
One of the most common mistakes we see on eavestrough jobs is that the roofers have either omitted them completely or they have installed the drip edges incorrectly under the shingles. If you plan to replace your shingles, make sure your roofers use a drip edge and know how to install it correctly. When installing the shingles, there should be a three-fourth inch space between the fascia board and the drip edge, which means the drip edge must stick past the fascia board by three-fourth of an inch.
At Fort Sask Reno Inc., when we install eavestroughs, 90% of the time, we find that the drip edge has been incorrectly installed. Sometimes, the drip edge is usually missing or installed tightly to the facia board, resulting in a completely ineffective system. The drip edges, when installed tightly to the fascia, the water can go directly behind the eavestrough rather than going into the trough. The water that gets behind your eavestrough can result in icy patches under the eavestrough, creating a safety hazard and potentially rotting your fascia board and even the walls of your house. So ensure that you don’t overlook the drip edge. Also, make sure your roofers know what they are doing, or just give us a call to take care of the job, so it’s done right!
2. Flipping-up eavestrough extensions
A prevalent mistake we see homeowners make concerning eavestroughs is that they often flip up the flip-ups and leave them up. Downspout extensions should be left in the downward position almost 100% of the time. The only time the eavestroughs extensions should be flipped up is when you try to move something past the downpipe extension, such as when you’re mowing the lawn. As soon as you’re done with these activities, the extensions should be placed in the down position and left that way. When the downpipes are in the upwards position, all of the rainwater or melted snow from your roof is directed onto your foundation walls. That creates the risk of floods and degradation of your home.
3. Neglecting downspout extension
It is very common for us to show up on a job site and notice damaged downspout extensions or completely missing downspout extensions. At the very least, homeowners must maintain the downspout extension integrity to ensure that there are no flood issues. Missing downspout extensions cause a fire hose-like effect, blasting water directly onto your foundation. If there is a way for water to enter your basement, free-flowing water will find it given half a chance. In our line of work, we often see extensive damage in basements due to missing downspout extensions. So ensure you install and maintain them to prevent unnecessary damage.
4. Forgetting to maintain the eavestrough
Another common mistake that homeowners make is that they often neglect the maintenance of their eavestroughs. We often get calls from customers saying their eavestrough isn’t working, only to show up for an inspection to see that the downpipes and eavestroughs are completely clogged with leaves and shingle gravel. For eavestroughs to work effectively, they must be cleaned. At the very least, eavestroughs should be cleaned out in the fall after the last leaves have fallen and preferably in the springtime as well because there are often a few more leaves that end up in the eavestroughs, and it’s essential that the eavestroughs are clean for the rainy season. Plugged eavestroughs will overflow, putting large volumes of water directly on your foundation, which can significantly increase the possibility of flooding and extensive damage to your home.
5. Installing insufficient downspouts
We often see homes that have insufficient downspouts. The rule of thumb is that a home should have one downspout for every 600 ft² of the roof. When we price your eavestrough job, we calculate the square footage of the roof and propose the appropriate number of downspouts to meet minimum requirements. If there are a few areas where a downspout will work on your property, that is alright; we can double up the downspouts and have them side-by-side so as to still maintain the minimum requirements and not have downpipes in areas that could cause issues.
6. Installing eavestroughs with too low of a slope or no slope
Slope issues are common problems with eavestrough jobs. We see eavestroughs that have been installed with too low of a slope or no slope at all. Often we will see homeowners run eavestrough downpipes over long distances horizontally. But, downspouts are not designed to carry water horizontally for any length of time. Water will carry through horizontal downspouts, but they will also leak at every joint. So, whenever possible, downspouts should be directed to the ground with a flip-up extension and not run horizontally on a wall. Sometimes, downspouts horizontally on a wall are the only option, but you need to know those downspouts will probably leak at every joint.
To avoid these and other mistakes, reach out to the experts at Fort Sask Reno Inc. We are a leading renovation contractor in Fort Saskatchewan, AB, with the right skills, tools, and equipment to professionally install siding, soffit, fascia, capping, exterior insulation, eavestroughs and decorative trims on new and renovation residential exteriors. Our goal is to provide the highest priority on quality workmanship and unmatched customer service. Our services are available to clients across Fort Saskatchewan, Edmonton, Lamont, Redwater, Gibbons, St. Albert, Sherwood Park, and the surrounding areas.
For a complete list of our services, please click here. If you have any questions about residential renovations, we’d love to hear from you. Please contact us here.