Tiger striping is the black, vertical striping found on gutters.
This striping occurs when dirt, debris, and pollen build up near the lip of the gutter. As moisture is attracted to these elements, it drips down the gutter, causing black lines and markings.
The easiest way to resolve tiger striping is to prevent it from happening. Gutters should be cleaned at least once a year (sometimes more often depending on the climate you live in). If you live in a humid area, mold and mildew can create more issues and may need a more excessive maintenance schedule. It’s not enough to just remove dirt and debris from inside the gutters. You also need to wipe the gutters down with a cleaning solution.
For simple cleaning and maintenance, any ordinary household detergent will work. Make sure the cleaner is non-abrasive to avoid removing any finishes or stains from the gutters.
When working with any cleaner, it’s a good idea to test the cleaner on an inconspicuous area of the gutters to see how it reacts with the finish. You can also use a commercial cleaner designed specifically for gutter cleaning such as KRUD KUTTER or Gutter Zap.
How to Clean Tiger Striping
Once you’ve determined that your cleaner is safe, you are ready to get to work.
- Apply the cleaning solution to the gutters with a soft rag or sponge.
- Allow the solution to set into the stains for a minute or two before rubbing it in.
- Always use a gentle rubbing action to avoid damage to the finish.
This method works well for maintenance or to remove any gentle staining that has already occurred.
For more stubborn stains, use a heavy duty cleaner but keep in mind that this may need more than one application. Fantastik All Purpose Cleaner is an effective option for treating more persistent stains.
If mold and mildew are present in your environment, you may need a different approach. Use a solution involving bleach, detergent, and a chemical called trisodium phosphate. Avoid using any abrasive chemicals like ammonia, which can damage the finish of the gutters.
By performing simple and routine maintenance, you can help reduce tiger striping and keep it at bay. You can also buy gutter guards to help keep your gutters free of dirt and debris. This will help to simplify your annual cleaning and maintenance routine.
And, if your gutters get too cumbersome, call the gutter repair team at American Hill Country Gutters. If you live in San Antonio and you need gutter repair, call us at 210-665-5500 or contact us on our form.