How to Stop Rain Overshooting Gutter

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Gutter overshoot usually occurs when rainwater flows over instead of into the gutters. It’s always important to have proper water diversion into the gutter to avoid damage to the foundation and siding, mold and mildew growth, basement flooding, premature roof wear, and landscape erosion.

For most people, it’s often easy to ignore throughout the year but impossible to overlook during storms. So how do you stop rain from overshooting the gutter?

Key Takeaways

Some things you can do to prevent rain overshooting your gutters:

  • Clean out your gutters and downspouts
  • Install splash guards and mesh guards
  • Buy bigger gutters
  • Check the tilt and pitch of your gutters

Considering the many disadvantages that come with rain overshooting gutters, it’s simply impossible to ignore the issue.

In this article, we are going to discuss why rain overshoots the gutter, how to prevent rainwater from jumping the gutter, and getting the right rain gutter size.

Why Does Rain Overshoot the Gutter?

When the rain pours down on your roof, you may at times notice water that’s supposed to be falling into your gutters missing it entirely.

To most people, this may not seem like so much of a problem. Any experienced homeowner, however, knows the problems that may arise if this continues to happen.

What Causes Rain to Overshoot the Gutter?

1. Debris that is Clogging up the Gutter

Some of the things that frequently find their way into gutters include leaves, shingle granules, sticks from broken tree limbs, and plastic bags. The most common reason for rain overshooting the gutter is a clogged system. If your downspout or any other part of your gutter is clogged with debris, then water cannot flow properly thus causing overshoot.

2. Improper Positioning of Gutter

The tilt and pitch of your gutters make all the difference. If your gutter is tilting away from your house, it could cause overshooting particularly during heavy storms. If the pitch of the gutter is too steep heading towards the downspout, then it can cause rain to overshoot the gutter.

The same case goes for lack of pitch which causes rainwater to gather in one spot rather than flow towards an exit.

3. Gutters That Aren’t Big Enough to Handle The Amount of Rain

At times you may install gutters that are simply too small to handle the amount of rainwater flowing down the roof. Let’s say there is no debris on your roof and you’ve measured the pitch and tilt and everything looks well balanced.

The next thing you ask yourself is do your gutters overflow only during heavy rain? If the answer is yes, then you may need to install bigger gutters.

4. Not Enough Downspouts

If you don’t have enough downspouts, rainwater cannot flow out fast enough. The rainwater gets backed up at the downspouts and then that backup continues along the roof-line. This puts a lot of pressure on your gutters and eventually causes rain to overshoot the gutters.

These are some of the reasons why rain may be overshooting your gutter. So it’s important to inspect your gutters, especially when it is raining, so you can identify the cause.

Some Of The Ramifications Of Rain Overshooting Your Gutters Include:

  • Foundation Damage – Rainwater overshooting may cause the foundation to weaken and become soft. It may also make the walls weak.
  • Basement Flooding – Rainwater overshooting may lead to water accumulation which may lead to basement flooding.
  • Landscaping Disasters – Due to rainwater overshooting the gutters, landscape erosion may occur.
  • Mold And Mildew Growth – Rainwater overshooting encourages mold growth and mildew on the walls of the house.

Whatever the cause of rain overshooting your gutters, you want to avoid these consequences, inspect your gutter system to identify the issue.

Plants growing in a broken gutter
If plants are growing in your gutter, they are due for a clean out

How to Prevent Heavy Rainwater from Jumping the Gutter

Gutter overshooting is an issue that requires prompt attention to facilitate the well-being of the home and occupant. As we have seen earlier in this article, there are several reasons why rain may be overshooting your gutters. 

Determining the cause will help you address the issue and prevent it from happening. After identifying the reason for overshooting, the next step is to mitigate this by ensuring rainwater will properly flow and be distributed.

Stopping Heavy Rain from Overshooting the Gutter

Here are a few simple ways to prevent rain overshooting your gutter:

1. Clean Out Your Gutters and Downspouts

Debris clogging your gutters and downspouts are the most common cause of rainwater jumping the gutters. So it only makes sense that you can prevent this from happening by clearing out the debris.

You can use a power hose to blow out leaves and any other dirt. This will also help clean the caked up dirt along the inside and outside of the gutter.

You can also do it by hand. Grab a ladder, a bucket, and heavy-duty gloves and clear out the gutters the old-fashioned way.

Once you have cleaned out the mess, wash out the gutter and downspouts with a garden hose. This will flash out the remaining dirt.

2. Install Splash Guards and Mesh Guards

If your roof is steeply pitched, water may be traveling too fast that it splashes over the gutter. You can install gutter splash guards. These fixtures are taller than the gutters around them and they act as a barrier to stop overshooting water. They will divert the rainwater back into the gutter thus stopping overshooting. They are normally L-shaped.

You can also install mesh screens over your gutters that catch debris and prevent them from falling inside. This way, only water will get through and prevent overflow.

3. Buy Bigger Gutters

Another way you can prevent rainwater from overshooting your gutters is by simply installing bigger gutters. The issue may be that your gutters are just too small to handle the amount of rainwater flowing down the roof. Bigger gutters will be just the solution for this.

4. Check the Tilt and Pitch of Your Gutters

As we have earlier mentioned, the tilt and pitch of your gutters will determine whether rainwater will overshoot your gutters. So to prevent this from happening, you should measure the tilt and pitch of your gutters.

Rectifying this may be a little harder than the other ways we have earlier mentioned to prevent overshooting. So you can consider hiring a professional to do this for you.

The Right Rain Gutter Size

When it comes to installing gutters in your house, one very important question is – What gutter size do you need?

There are some serious consequences for selecting an inappropriate gutter size for your house. If you pick a gutter that’s too small, you’ll find that it clogs easily, getting blocked with debris and overshooting rainwater. 

If you go that way, the whole process of installing gutters may as well have been a waste of time. On the other hand, nobody wants unnecessarily large and bulky gutters pinned to the outside of their building – it won’t look that great.

More often than not, choosing the right size of your rain gutters is a complicated matter. In most standard homes, two sizes of gutters are the most popular. Typically, most houses go for a standard 5 or 6-inch K-style gutter.

These are usually semi-circular in shape and should be able to handle any kind of normal rainfall. It should however be noted that houses with larger roofs, particularly steep ones, or houses located in areas prone to heavy downpours might want to consider getting something a little more heavy-duty.

It should be noted that some considerations should be made when deciding on the right size of gutters to get. They include:

  • The size of your roof– A larger roof means more rainwater will be moving into the gutters. So you should put this into consideration.
  • The pitch of your roof– The pitch determines how fast water slips into your gutter. So it’s important to consider the pitch of your roof so that your gutter isn’t overwhelmed.
  • Rainfall intensity in your area– If you are in an area that receives a lot of rainfall, then bigger gutters will be required.

You should analyze the cause of rain overshooting your gutter when it next rains. This will help you to know how you can prevent it from happening once again. Hopefully, this guide has helped you with regard to knowing what to look for in finding any issues.