Concrete | Finlock guttering
How we approach problematic concrete | Finlock guttering
What are finlock gutters?
Concrete or finlock gutters are usually found on properties built between 1950 and 1970.
The system was introduced as a replacement for cast iron or steel rainwater goods following a shortage in metals at the time.
Concrete was a low cost and readily available alternative resulting in many new build homes of the time being fitted with the finlock system.
Why are they problematic?
The concrete blocks used to create the finlock system rest across the cavity of the wall and extend externally to create the roofline.
By nature concrete is an absorbent material. If left un-protected finlock blocks can become heavy and move/drop, resulting in joint failure and a 'sagging' in the roofline.
Movement can occur in any property as it settles or as a result of expansion and constriction. Another common denominator in finlock blocks dropping is lack of sufficient support during window installation. Movement will first become apparent if windows are difficult to open and close.
As a result the joins between the blocks can fail. Wet external walls will become apparent as the system fails. Water marks around the external joins in the gutter are usually the first sign of a problem.
If left unattended to, rainwater can affect the internal walls too, as water seeps into the cavity.
What are my options?
There are many companies that offer different methods of dealing with concrete gutters. Gutters4u provide a profiled aluminium lining service. Our bespoke liners are join free and come with a no quibble 20 year guarantee. Below you will find more information on the features and benefits of our product, as a comparison to other systems on the market.
Here we will run though the basic options compared to the service we offer.
Approaching remedial works to finlock gutter systems is not necessarily as costly or drastic a problem as some might lead you to believe.
Once you have weighed up the pros and cons of each system or company, we recommend dividing the cost of your quotes by the length of the guarantee provided with each. This should aid you in making the decision that is right for you, your budget and your home.
Likely the the cheapest option.
Any lining will work for a time, however; felt is often over-lapped and joined at various locations within the roofline.
We often find layer upon layer applied in attempts to patch the problem.
This can vastly reduce the volume of water the gutters can hold and the amount of joins make it difficult to determine where the water is getting in.
This option is quick and easy to apply.
Bitumen or fiberglass applications are applied in liquid form and dry to a hard surface.
During changing weather conditions or as a result of movement in the property the hard surface can crack.
This option is difficult to remove and like felt we often find layer upon layer has been applied.
This can affect the volume of water the gutter can hold and how it flows to the rainwater pipe.
The pliable nature of this product makes it an easier system to install.
Like felt, it is often overlapped or fitted with joins, which increases possible points of entry.
In changing weather conditions rubber can lose its elasticity and split at any point in the roofline.
We have looked into providing this as an alternative to aluminium, but found that the cost to us to do so was in the same region as aluminium yet the lifespan much shorter.
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We will simply provide a quotation and leave you space and time to decide .
The benefits of aluminium lining
Aluminium lining finlock gutters eliminates many of the pitfalls of the methods mentioned above.
Our installers can cold press vast lengths of aluminium coil on location to sit neatly within the existing gutter profile.
The aluminium is cold pressed on site to sit across the length of your roofline. Multiple properties can also be worked on without the need for a join between.
Profiled to the exact measurements of your roofline, the liner will sit beneath the last row of roof tiles (**there are some cases whereby this is not possible), within the gutter profile and fold over the top lip of the gutter too - in one piece. The joins sit at the boarder of your property only - greatly reducing possible points of entry.
Furthermore the aluminium we use will never chip, crack, split, expand or constrict in changing weather conditions. It carries BBA certification and is manufacturer guaranteed for in excess of 30 years when installed in suburban areas and in excess of 20 in industrial and marine conditions.
The aluminium gauge is between 0.7-0.9mm thick, maximising the volume of water your gutters can hold and eliminating the need for 'layering up' the material.
We apply a 20 year guarantee on the installation too. This is a promise to return at any point within the 20 year period to replace failing joins, should the need arise.
We can limit the possible ingress locations to these isolated areas as the aluminium will never fail. Joint replacement is covered under warranty regardless of the condition we find the gutters in on arrival -and is a straight forward fix.
We do however; charge to unblock gutters that are found to be full, as this falls within maintenance rather than system failure.
Keeping any roofline clear of debris on at least an annual basis will ensure that the system is working correctly. This applies to PVC, aluminium, cast iron, steel or lined concrete gutters.
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