Did you know that gutters made out of galvanized steel are designed to last for about 20 years, while their aluminum counterparts should last for 40 years or longer? Of course, this is only if the home's guttering system is maintained over the years, which involves routine inspections and upkeep. A few of the maintenance responsibilities that you may be presented with include fixing seams, rust damage and holes. Here's how to do them:

1. Fixing Damaged Seams.

The seams are where two pieces of the guttering system go together. Usually, you won't notice a problem with them unless it's raining. However, when you do notice that your gutters are leaking at the seams, you need to get ready to remedy the problem as soon as possible. To perform this task, you'll need to:

  • Remove the compromised section of guttering.
  • Remove the screws, the fasteners, and any other pieces.
  • Use a utility knife to remove what's left of the old sealant.
  • Place a generous amount of gutter sealant along the edge of the seam.
  • Push the two pieces of guttering together.
  • Let dry, and then return the fasteners, screws, and any other piece that you removed previously.

2. Repairing Rust Damage.

While the material used to design your gutter system, such as galvanized steel, can indeed take a beating, it is unable to withstand the negative impact that rust can have on it. If it appears that the damage is not severe, you should be able to effectively fix it. All you need to do is grab a small bucket of warm water and a wire brush, then start scrubbing the rust away. Once you have thoroughly eliminated the rust, you should let it dry completely and then follow up with a metal primer to help eradicate the chance of rust damage in the future.

3. Repairing Holes.

When the aforementioned rust damage is simply too severe, especially to the point that there are holes in your gutters from it, you will need to perform a full repair. The same is true for punctures in the gutters (yes, even rust-resistant aluminum ones!). Here's how to do it:

  • Thoroughly clean the damage area with warm water and soap.
  • Allow to dry completely before beginning work.
  • Measure the size of flashing you'll need to cover the perforation.
  • Cut the metal flashing.
  • Add a generous coating of roof cement on top of and around the perforation.
  • Put the patch on top, centering it over the hole.
  • Add another coat of the cement around the exterior edges of the flashing, ensuring to feather it out.

In the event that you believe your gutters are too severely damaged to be repaired and need a new guttering system installed or you need help with the aforementioned repairs, you may want to contact a professional roofing company {click here for more information}.