Holes appear in gutters for a variety of reasons. Rust is the main reason for holes in metal gutters. Since copper and aluminum gutters are lighter in weight, they can be easily pierced by branches or tools. If you have inherited a gutter system from a previous owner, you might even find a hole that has been drilled to drain standing water. For whatever reason, holes need to be patched as soon as you discover them to prevent them from growing larger.
- You will need roofing cement and a metal-repair patch.
- Patch material should be the same as the gutter. To prevent electrolytic corrosion (one metal corroding when in contact with a different metal), if the gutters are made of aluminum, use aluminum flashing to fix the holes.
- Clean all debris from the gutter before you begin.
- Use a stiff-bristle wire brush to remove rust stains around the hole in need of repair. If you are unable to remove all of the rust, cut it out.
- Using a trowel, spread roofing cement evenly over the damaged area. Let it dry.
- The metal patch should be several inches larger than the hole it is to cover.
- Place the patch over the hole. When you are satisfied it will fit properly, secure it in place with roofing cement.
- Fold the edges of the patch over the lip of the gutter with pliers. Bringing the patch up against the gutter walls instead of making it fit exactly of the hole in the bottom of gutter system lends added protection against possible leakage.
- Apply a final layer of roofing cement to the entire surface of the patch.
A simple gutter repair can save you money down the line. Taking the time now to check your eavestrough for holes and other signs of damage will alert you to situations that could develop into much bigger problems in the future.