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  • Writer's pictureCharles Riley BA(Hons) DipSurv AssocRICS VRS

The Importance of Gutter Maintenance!

- Brooks Surveyors

Blocked gutter and downpipe, below this is a blocked rainwater gully. Blocked rainwater goods.
Blocked gutter and downpipe, below this is a rainwater gully, also blocked.

The Importance of Maintaining Rainwater Goods is often overlooked in Residential Property.


As homeowners, we often focus on the interior of our properties, ensuring that everything is well-maintained and functioning smoothly. However, it's equally important to pay attention to the exterior elements of our homes, including the rainwater goods. Neglecting the maintenance of rainwater goods can lead to a variety of problems, from wood rot to subsidence. In this blog post, we will explore why it is essential to maintain the rainwater goods of your property and the benefits it brings.


1. Protecting Your Property:

Rainwater goods, such as gutters, downpipes, and drainage systems, play a vital role in diverting rainwater away from your property's foundation. By channelling rainwater effectively, these systems prevent water from seeping into your walls, roof, sub-floors and cellars, thus safeguarding your property from potential water damage. Regular maintenance helps identify and address issues like clogged gutters, leaks, or cracks, preventing costly repairs down the line.


Saturation of patio area and external wall caused by leaking gutter above.
Saturation of patio area and external wall caused by leaking gutter above.

2. Preventing Structural Damage:

Water is a powerful force that can gradually erode the structural integrity of a building. When rainwater goods become damaged or blocked, water can overflow and saturate the ground around your property. This leads to dampness, mould growth, and over time it can weakened foundations, ultimately compromising the stability of your property. Timely maintenance of rainwater goods ensures that water is properly channelled away from your property, mitigating the risk of structural damage.


Structural movement caused by rain water drainage.
This is harder to spot, but look closely and you will see the ground floor windows are leaning down towards the down pipe in the middle which drains directly onto the ground. Over many years this has caused the brickwork to drop slightly. You can even see where the cracks have been repaired above the right hand window.

3. Avoiding Dampness and Mould:

Dampness and mould are common problems in UK properties, particularly in areas with high rainfall. Excess moisture resulting from poorly maintained rainwater goods can create a conducive environment for mould growth. Besides the unpleasant odour and unsightly appearance, mould can cause health issues for residents, especially those with respiratory conditions. Regular inspection and maintenance of rainwater goods help prevent water buildup, keeping your property dry and mould-free.


The internal side of a valley gutter which has started to leak.
The internal side of a valley gutter which has started to leak.

4. Preserving Landscaping and Foundations:

In addition to protecting your property's structure, well-maintained rainwater goods also safeguard your landscaping foundations. When rainwater is not effectively directed away from your property, it can pool on patios and footpaths, causing them to sink in areas where the soil has eroded beneath. Regular maintenance helps ensure that water is properly drained, preserving your garden and preventing foundation issues to your patio areas caused by excessive moisture.


The slabs have sagged in this area due to water pooling on the ground from the leaking gutter above.
The slabs have sagged in this area due to water pooling on the ground from the leaking gutter above.

5. Improving Long-Term Cost Savings:

By investing in the regular maintenance of rainwater goods, you are potentially saving yourself from costly repairs and replacements in the future. Addressing minor issues promptly, such as gutter cleaning or repairing leaks, can prevent more significant damage to your property. Neglecting maintenance can result in extensive damage, requiring expensive repairs or even replacements of gutters, downpipes, or other rainwater goods.


Maintaining the rainwater goods of your UK residential property is an essential aspect of property ownership that should not be overlooked. Regular inspection, cleaning, and timely repairs can protect your property from water damage, structural issues, dampness, mold growth, and landscaping damage. By investing in maintenance, you are not only safeguarding your property but also ensuring long-term cost savings. So, prioritize the upkeep of your rainwater goods and enjoy a well-protected, durable, and beautiful home for years to come.


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