Seven top tips for heritage gutter maintenance

Guttering is a key function for rainwater drainage, yet it’s often forgotten about and left to do its job. Gutter maintenance is imperative to avoid any nasty blockages and with so many different systems available, it’s equally important to know what you’re working with.

We specialise in heritage buildings so have come across many different systems, the most common being the Victorian-designed cast iron rainwater system. No matter what system your building has, there are some general maintenance tips that will keep your gutters running clear:

  1. Regular inspection and rodding (cleaning) of gutters and gullies will ensure there are no blockages or debris.
  2. Do more regular checks in autumn and winter. Excess leaves, twigs and rubbish will accumulate in the colder months so keep on top of potential blockages.
  3. If you’re in a tall building, anchor points are needed for maintenance such as window and gutter cleaning. This ensures the person carrying out the cleaning or maintenance can move up and down the building’s exterior. Therefore, ensure your anchor points have been routinely serviced so they are safe to use with harnesses.
  4. Check your gutters when it’s raining. This is the perfect time to see if there are any cracks, overflowing water or any damage that may not otherwise be visible.
  5. In older buildings, keep on top of maintenance and patching. Be aware of maintenance requirements for older drainage systems such as water proofing of cast iron downpipes. These are known to disintegrate over time.
  6. Keep gullies waterproof by applying a liquid membrane every two years to make sure there is no water ingress into your building.
  7. Check the flashing on the roof to ensure no water can penetrate the building, or even cause an external pool. Remember, water will always find a way to creep in unless it moves south and out!

Regular maintenance and knowing what to look out for should prevent a costly problem developing over time. We are happy to answer any queries about the system you have in place or if you want to talk through any repairs needed.