How To Fix Vinyl Gutter Leaks

You shouldn't ignore a leaky vinyl gutter. A gutter redirects water to keep it from your home's foundation and roof.  Homeowners choose vinyl gutters because they don't rust and they are flexible. However, a leaky gutter eventually causes rotted wood, and it can get into your attic walls. It is easy to fix a leaky vinyl gutter seam by following these steps:

Prepare to Fix the Leaky Seam

To fix the gutter seam, gather:

  • plastic work gloves
  • ladder and stabilizer
  • hose
  • liquid dish soap 
  • heavy-duty scouring pad or scrub brush
  • sandpaper
  • putty knife or plastic spoon
  • utility knife wire or nail
  • caulk gun 
  • rubber gaskets (optional)
  • gutter and flashing caulk 

Check the weather, since caulk requires about twenty-four hours to dry, or take the gutters down to repair in a garage. Your gutter manufacturer may suggest a certain type of sealant.

Set a ladder on flat ground within easy reach of the gutters, but don't lay the ladder against them. Add a ladder stabilizer to keep the ladder sturdy or get an assistant to hold it for you. 

Clean Gutters

Scrub debris with the scrub brush or steel wool pad on the inside and outside off the gutters. Squirt three or four drops of dish soap in the gutters, spray water in them, and clean the outside. Let the gutters dry, then spray more water in them to identify leaks.

Inspect the gaskets for leaks. If you spot a leak, press the gutter to disengage the union joint, and remove the gasket. Use it as a guide to buy a replacement.

Fix a Hole or Crack

Buy caulk suited for vinyl gutters or one that works on multiple surface types. If the hole is bigger than a pinhole, or the crack is longer than one-inch, it is best to replace the section.

Sand around the crack or hole edges to roughen up the surface and wipe up dust. Slide the tube of caulk into the caulk gun, and snip the tip the size of the damaged area with a utility knife held at a 45-degree angle. Break the seal at the end of the tube with a wire or long nail.  

Applying light pressure, run a bead of caulk along the crack, or fill the hole. Use the putty knife or spoon to smooth the caulk. If you get caulk on the tube or gun, clean it immediately. 

Press the gutter sections lightly to help spread the caulk. Let the caulk dry, then use a hose to test for leaks. If the seam still leaks, scrape off the old caulk, and reapply it. For more information, contact a company like Innovations Siding & Windows