Robert Lamoureaux | Solution for leaky gutters

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Question No. 1 

Robert, my name is Harriet J., Canyon Country is where my home is. With the rains upon us I am reminded that we’ve repaired our gutters literally about a dozen times, and now with the first drizzle I see that they are leaking again, at the same joints as always. I am tired of paying a handyman to do this job only to find out that it has failed in the same places time and time again. Am I just not seeing it properly and these cannot be repaired? How are these properly fixed once and for all, if it is possible?  

Answer No. 1 

Harriet, this is an extremely common problem, which makes for a great question. Gutters are designed to be sandwiched together at the connections only by about 3 or 4 inches. There is a sealant applied but I see it often where the installers only add a small, thin bead of sealant, mostly silicone caulking, which can and does fail due to the extreme temperatures of Santa Clarita. Not long after application, you the homeowner are dealing with this leaking issue. The proper way to seal this once and for all is to take the joint apart, clean up the debris left from the old sealant, and use a single-stage urethane. There are two, each sold at big box stores, one by the name of Vulkem and the other is Sika Flex, both the same by different names. Either of these need to be applied to the entire joint, not just as a bead of caulking would be. The joint is then reassembled and let dry. If this is done well, primarily the removal of the old debris, you will have a failproof seal for many years to come. Good luck. 

Robert Lamoureux has more than 40 years of experience as a general contractor, with separate licenses in electrical and plumbing contracting. He owns IMS Construction Inc. in Valencia. His opinions are his own, not necessarily those of The Signal. Opinions expressed in this column are not meant to replace the recommendations of a qualified contractor after that contractor has made a thorough visual inspection. Email questions to Robert at [email protected] 

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