How to: Spot the Signs Your Rainware Isn't Working Properly

When was the last time you looked inside your eavestroughs?

Often, the rainware system is overlooked and not continuously maintained throughout the year. Neglecting your rainwater system can potentially lead to serious issues down the road. Regular maintenance twice a year is key to ensuring your eavestroughs and downpipe are working together.

Don't risk costly repairs or damage to your property. Make sure you give your rainwater system the attention it deserves.

Key signs your rainware is not working properly

When it comes to inspecting, you may notice these things:

  1. Your eavestrough is overflowing.
  2. No water is draining through your downpipes.
  3. Water seeping into your basement or crawlspace

These are all imminent signs there's a blockage in your eavestough that is not allowing water to flow freely towards the downpipe. 

What causes a blockage in your eavestrough? Well, there could be several reasons, for instance, leaves, debris, dirt, bird nests, or ice buildup. You can even have plants/trees going inside.

You can prevent these issues from arising by doing two maintenance checks per year - Spring and Fall. If you have recently moved or haven't checked your rainware system in a while, follow these steps to get started safely.

How to clean eavestroughs

  • Ensure your extension ladder is placed on a level surface and secured at the top to prevent it from sliding.
  • Wear heavy-duty rubber gloves to avoid cutting yourself.
  • Use a stiff brush or old paintbrush and cut the bristles to 1" in length to sweep the debris into piles for easier removal.
  • Dispose of the debris using a bag tied to the ladder's side or a bucket.
  • Wash any remaining debris down the downpipe using a garden hose.

How to clean/inspect downpipes

  • Take the same garden hose and feed it down the pipe while turning on the water.
  • If the water backs up, you may have an obstacle clogging the pipe.
  • If this is the case, you will have to dismantle the downpipe to find and clear the obstacle.

When inspecting your downpipe, ensure the seam is not bulging or distorted. Ice can build up over the winter months and can expand the material apart at the seam. If this occurs, it will be necessary to replace the downpipe. To help prevent this from happening, keep the opening of the downpipe and elbow clear and free of ice.

When your maintenance is complete, consider an eavestrough protection product like Alu-Rex Gutter Clean to help keep debris out of your system. You still must check your eavestroughs twice a year, but they don't require extensive cleaning. Alu-Rex also keeps the snow on top of your eavestrough to melt, so it doesn't turn into a block of ice, creating a blockage.