Managing the flow of rainwater from your patio roof will make it more enjoyable to use, no matter what the weather brings. Water dripping from the edge of your patio may not seem like a big deal at first, but it can lead to many problems. Common problems include:
Erosion damage to the concrete patio pad, which causes the edges to crumble or crack.
Water erosion along the cover's drip line into bordering flower beds or lawn. This can result in a trench where nothing other than weeds can grow.
Water and mud stains on patio surfaces, supports and furniture from the splashing water.
Difficult to walk under the overhang due to dripping water, even when it's barely raining.
Adding gutters can fix all these issues. Gutters don't have to be unattractive, as you can work them into your patio design or make them blend into the background.
Water Routing Ideas
One of the biggest decisions is where to route the roof runoff. Since patios invite you to walk into the yard, you don't want to walk through an overly wet area or a puddle when you step off the patio. You have several options when it comes to routing the water:
Use a downspout drain, which routes the water underground or into a French drain so soggy areas aren't a possibility.
Route the downspout into a rain barrel or other catchment system, and then reuse the water in the garden.
Position the downspout so it empties into a nearby garden bed.
Disguising the Downspouts
Gutters usually blend seamlessly into the patio roof trim, but the downspouts may be more obvious. This is especially true if there isn't a matching support to which you can attach the downspout.
If you use rain barrels, an attractive and musical option is the rain chain. Rain trickles down the chain, often into small upturned cups, which route it into your collection barrel. The result is attractive in wet and dry weather, and the sound of the falling water is pleasant.
Another option to hide a downspout is a spout trellis. These resemble a metal cage which surround the downspout. You can train quick-growing vines, such as scarlet runner beans or morning glories, to cover the trellis and completely camouflage the spout.
Maintaining the Gutters
Just like the gutters on your home, your patio gutters will need some basic care to work properly. Keep the gutters free of debris, such as fallen leaves, by cleaning them out each spring and fall. Downspouts and drains may be more prone to damage since they are in a heavily-used areas of the yard. Monthly inspections and repairs will keep them in good working order.
Finally, if you use a rain barrel system, make sure the barrel is working properly. Check the mosquito screens, overflow valves, and spigots once a month to make sure they aren't clogged or damaged. With a little bit of care and a touch of creativity, your patio gutter system can be attractive and useful.
For more information, contact A - 1 Seamless Gutters Inc. or a similar company.