If you’ve ever looked out the window as you fly low into London over the parks, squares and streets of Kensington, Chelsea, Putney and Richmond you would have seen how many trees trees there are. Deciduous ones they are too. The ones that drop leaves into your gutters.
Clear free flowing, unblocked gutters is something we might be forced to think about at this time of year as the leaves gather on the train tracks so also do they gather and stick together in our gutters and pipes preventing water from going where it should. The water trapped in blocked pipes can freeze expand and split the pipe allowing water to flow out onto the brickwork, soaking it until it appears inside the house as rust-like marks on the emulsion painted walls and ceilings.
This can be prevented by timely gutter clearing. And that time would be at the end of November.
Ask the gutter cleaner to take pictures of the clean free gutters for your peace of mind. He should also be able to tell you if the gutter is running to the correct fall and not allowing water to pond, build up debris and cause overflows.
He might also be willing to remove the moss build-up from your roof as this will continue to grow, loosen and drop down into the gutters causing blockages.
Other things to be done to external plumbing is the filling of gaps in the pipe joints. These can trap water that might later freeze and split the pipe. This is normally done at the time of painting.
And next time you are having painting done, ask the painter to paint the inside of your cast iron gutters thereby increasing their life span and of course he would clean them out in the process.
Check the brackets that are holding the down pipes and soil pipes onto the wall too, because once one breaks the wind movement will easily loosen or break the other brackets and also loosen the pipe joints. Most painters will be able to do this for you.
The necessity for all of the external plumbing maintenance listed above can be established by observation from the ground during a downpour. Is the water going where it is supposed to go.
I hope this is useful. Give me a call if you have any questions.