Friday 23 November marks National Guttering Day and the end of National Maintenance Week – a week in which the importance of effective house maintenance is highlighted to homeowners across the UK.

Denise O’Leary, spokesperson at Wavin Plastics – the UKs leading provider of water management systems – explains why home maintenance is so important and offers residents sound advice on how to keep rainwater systems in tip-top condition this winter.

“We’re approaching a winter in which heavy rain has already been forecast,” comments Denise. “Therefore, it’s even more important to make sure your gutters are in good condition to cope with the predicted extra rainfall. Prevention is definitely far cheaper than cure. Ineffective gutters lead to water run-off which can pour into the foundations of buildings, causing mould and mildew and poorly installed gutters can also lead to damage on exterior walls causing unsightly streaking or damaged brickwork. All of these can decrease the value of a property considerably. Simple measures carried out twice a year on gutters and drains can ensure that drainage systems perform year on year.

“People think nothing of having a car service every year and yet many don’t spend the time or money on their houses which, when you think about it, is odd as homes are a far bigger investment. Homeowners really should consider checking their homes every six months to make sure there’s nothing that needs fixing or repairing.”

Top tips on maintaining your existing gutters:

  • Check gutters for debris including leaves and moss. Scoop out any rubbish using a trowel and then flush with water
  • If the down-pipe starts to fill, it is probably blocked. Don’t push the rubbish down as this may compress it, making it harder to remove. Try to free the blockage using stiff wire and then flush using a hose pipe. If this doesn’t work, you’ll need to dismantle the pipework and clean the individual sections
  • To prevent this happening at all, Osma Leafguard can be fitted to the Osma RoundLine gutter, providing a simple to fit method to keep gutters and pipes free of fallen leaves. Leafguard is easy to cut to the required length and simply fits inside the gutter
  • Make sure there is no sagging – if there is a pool of water in the guttering, the section will need to be repositioned to ensure a gently slope. Additional brackets will help prevent this problem reoccurring
  • Check for cracks. One of the benefits of a plastic pipe system is that replacement sections are cheap and easy to install. Unclip the old piece, cut the new section to size and clip in


Wavin Plastics has launched Osma StormLine – a high capacity ogee gutter profile utilising 68mm round 61mm square downpipes and incorporating a high front edge. This product is available in black, brown or white.

StormLine combines an attractive appearance with the ability to handle large volumes of water, making it the perfect guttering for this winter. Recommended for use on roof areas up to 254m², it is particularly useful for three story townhouses, apartment blocks, detached houses and conservatories. The advantages of this system include fittings that have been designed to assist faster and easier installation; a high front edge which prevents overshoot and conceals the tile edges; an internal rail for concealed hanging brackets and internal ribs to improve flow and reduce the risk of blockages.

Wavin Plastics also produces four other rainwater systems including three half round profiles – Osma RoundLine, Osma RoofLine and Osma Mini-Fit plus another square sectioned profile – Osma SuperLine.

RoundLine is a 4.5 inch/112mm system suitable for the domestic housing market. Utilising 2.5 inch/68mm circular downpipe, it is available in black, grey, white and brown.

RoofLine is a six inch/150mm gutter system which is suitabvle for large industrial and commercial buildings. Four inch/110mm circular downpipes are used with this system which comes in black or grey.

Mini-Fit is a tough but light weight three inch/75mm system which utlisies 2 inch.55mm downpipes. It is designed for porches, sheds, garages and greenhouses and ocmes in grey and brown.

SuperLine is a five inch/125mm system suitable for large roof areas or small commercial buildings and utilises 2.5 inch/68mm downpipe from the RoundLine range. It is available in black or brown.

“The capacity of a rainwater system to effectively drain a roof area depends on four factors: gutter capacity, the level the gutter is laid to, the number of outlets and the location of outlets,” adds Denise. “Make sure when choosing a new system, that you have the right one for your type of property. Whichever system you opt for, remember that laying the gutter to a fall will increase flow capacity and the area of roof that can be drained – particularly if the downpipe is positioned centrally. Silting will also be prevented. The more outlets along a gutter and the shorter the distance rainwater has to travel, the more effective the system will be.”