Water leaking between a gutter and fascia indicates that the gutter is not performing as it should. Gutter leaking can have several causes, including fascia damage, roof damage, and gutter problems.
Water dripping between the gutter and fascia is never normal, but it is common. Any signs of water between the gutter and fascia should be addressed promptly.
Homes without metal cladding over the fascia are more at risk, as painted fascia will degrade more quickly if you discover water behind the gutter.
More often than not, water between the gutter and fascia will find its way into the holes made by the fasteners supporting the gutter. It often leads to rotting of the fascia, which loosens the fasteners. This allows the gutters to sag, making the problem even worse.
Eventually, the gutters will become clogged and overflow. The sagging will prevent the gutters from emptying, leading to pooling water. Pooling water can lead to mold growth, so those sensitive to it could be affected.
We’ll discuss what water dripping between the gutter and fascia means and how to correct the problem. We will discuss DIY methods, but generally, the best option is to hire a professional.
What Causes Water Leaking Between Gutter and Fascia?
Clogs, damage, loose fasteners, poor installation, and roof issues can cause water between the gutter and the fascia. The sooner these causes are identified and corrected, the better.
Clogged gutters will overflow in heavy rain because the water comes in faster than it drains away. Water will overflow at the next lowest point. An overflow on the downspout end is evidence of a clog.
Keeping your gutters clean is the best way to avoid clogs. You can clean them manually or install gutter guards that help keep debris out of the gutters.
Gutters damaged by falling limbs or storms can significantly change the slope, reducing the gutter’s ability to collect and control the runoff. Damage severe enough to cause issues is usually apparent, but look closely for minor damage too.
If you have damaged gutters, they should be replaced rather than repaired. Aluminum is very durable when formed into a specific shape, but the gutter is not repairable once it is bent or torn.
Loose hangers allow the gutter to pull away from the fascia, creating a gap between the fascia and the back of the gutter. If you see twisting in the gutter, the hanger closest to the twist is loose.
Hidden hangers can often be repositioned and tightened, but straps, gutter spikes, and gutter screws can be more challenging to adjust.
If the gutter already has perforations from previous spikes and screws, replace the gutter section. These perforations will still leak even after you tighten the hangers, so you’ll have to replace them anyway.
Gutters must have a precise pitch, or slope, towards a downspout. You can identify improper installation by watching the end with no downspout. The gutter slope is incorrect if water exits the gutter at any point but the downspout.
Improper installation can be corrected if discovered early. If you suspect poor gutter installation, asking a pro for help is often the fastest option.
Roofs are known to sag over time between the trusses or rafters. Sags in a roof lead to similar weakening in the fascia because the fascia follows the roof line. You can identify roof issues by looking for a dip or sag across the roof.
The result is usually an increased gap between the shingle overhang and the gutter. The larger this gap becomes, the greater the chances the runoff will miss the gutter and fall straight to the ground.
It’s best to have a roofer address any roofing issues, as repairing a roof is complex. Experienced professionals have the skills and training to rectify rafter and truss issues. They’ll also understand how to do so cost-effectively, saving you money.
What Are the Consequences of Water Leaking Between Gutter and Fascia?
Water leaking behind the gutter will lead to a host of problems when not addressed. These include wood rot, mold, siding, foundation, and landscaping damage.
Moisture control is also critical to protecting the interior framing, which will rot and degrade if it cannot stay dry.
Wood rot typically occurs in the fascia first, then thereafter in the roof sheathing and rafter tails. Wood rot appears as dark streaks on the fascia and sagging. If water makes it to the rafters, often a spot will appear on the ceiling below.
To keep wood rot to a minimum, limit the holes you make to install the hangers. It’s also a good idea to caulk any unused holes. Adding a drip edge over the gutter and under the shingles will prevent most wood rot.
Mold grows in areas that stay moist. Water trapped between the gutter and the fascia cannot evaporate.
Eventually, the fascia often absorbs the water, leading to mold growth. Mold looks like a brown or green streak along the eave of the roof, typically found in a shady spot.
Trim back tree limbs that are shading the roof. Also, make sure the slope is correct for proper drainage.
Siding damage is often the result of water dripping uncontrolled from behind the fascia. Siding is not designed to get wet from behind, so if water is getting behind the gutter, it’s probably getting behind the siding too.
If you see moldy siding, water is getting behind the siding and becoming trapped. The key is to remove the siding and trace the stain to the source.
Erosion of the sidewalls supporting your home’s foundation is preventable. Water between the gutter and fascia may indicate overflowing. In this case, water runoff overflows the gutter before it reaches the downspout.
It’s best not to wait until you find evidence of foundation issues. Call a roofer or gutter specialist immediately if you suspect your gutters are causing erosion.
Landscape erosion is usually easy to spot and indicates a problem. If you see landscape erosion, the cause is often directly vertical.
Call a pro if you notice landscaping washing away during heavy rain.
Once the erosion causes the foundation to become damaged, the repair bill will become exponentially more significant.
How to Fix Water Leaking Between Gutter and Fascia?
Gutters leaking between the house and gutter can easily damage the fascia and the soffit underneath. Regular inspections of the eaves of your roof will reveal which method works best for your rain gutter system.
With proper cleaning and slope, it ensures your gutters will not become clogged and overflow between the gutter and the fascia. Regular cleaning works well. But you can install gutter guards to reduce maintenance.
Sealing your gutters with high-quality exterior sealer will prevent water from seeping around a fastener or union. Unions in sectional gutters are notorious for leaking between sections, allowing water to fall behind.
Minor upkeep and repairs can extend the life of the gutter system. However, if the repairs themselves need repairing, it’s time for new gutters. Gutters will often leak from multiple repairs, so eventually, the least expensive option becomes replacing the gutters.
Installing Gutter Guards
Gutter guards also do a great job of reducing the frequency of cleaning and other maintenance. Several options are available, but all will still need periodic cleaning and inspection.
Gutter guards prevent water from getting between the gutter and the fascia. They cover the area of the gutter most prone to leaks in the back, diverting the water away from the fascia and back into the gutter.
DIY versions of gutter guards are available, but the advantage of hiring a professional gutter expert is they will install the most effective designs.
Water Leaking Between Gutter and Fascia Merits Prompt Attention
Erosion, wood rot, and siding damage are the most common problems that begin with water between the gutters and the fascia.
This water is an early sign that the gutter, fascia, or both need attention. The sooner you repair water leaking between a gutter and fascia, the fewer repairs will be necessary in the long run.
A roofing or gutter professional can help you discern why water is getting between your gutter and fascia.
We have the experience to recognize issues right away, saving you time and hassle. All Star Home is a premier home improvement and roofing company with local contractors throughout the U.S.