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Gutter Installation: Should Homeowners Hire a Professional or DIY

Gutter Installation Should Homeowners Hire a Professional or DIY

There are plenty of homeowners who feel like hiring a professional contractor for jobs they deem “simple” is a waste of money. We see it time and time again, do-it-yourselfers that get in over their heads and end up in a situation that costs them more than if they would have hired a professional from the start. This is a common situation we run into, especially when it comes to roofing and gutter installation. Believe it or not, installing gutters or replacing your roof is not as easy as it appears on television or in YouTube videos. Below are the most common issues that arise when DIYs tackle gutter installation.

Incorrect Pitch:

If the pitch of your gutter is off even slightly it can create an issue. Although gutters look even from a distance, they are in fact slightly pitched from one end to the other. Striking a balance is key. A gutter with too little of a pitch allows the gutter to fill up until it overflows, while a sharp pitch is not pleasing to look at. For every forty feet of gutter that is installed the gutter should slope between one to two inches.

Incorrect Pitch:

If the pitch of your gutter is off even slightly it can create an issue. Although gutters look even from a distance, they are in fact slightly pitched from one end to the other. Striking a balance is key. A gutter with too little of a pitch allows the gutter to fill up until it overflows, while a sharp pitch is not pleasing to look at. For every forty feet of gutter that is installed the gutter should slope between one to two inches.

Forward Tilt:

Even though your gutter must be installed on a slight downward angle to allow for drainage, it must be completely level from front to back. If it is not level it will spill over the edge. Professional gutter installation takes time. A level must be used to accurately level gutters and properly install the fasteners that will hold the gutter in the proper position.

Improper Positioning:

Gutters do not just hang on the edge of your homes roof. Instead a gutter must be installed a couple of inches below the roof line. If a gutter is installed too high cause water to runoff down the back side which can cause staining on the exterior siding of the home.

Unsuitable Hanger Spacing:

Try as you may to properly slope gutters, improper positioning of gutter hangers can cause the gutter to sag. Gutter hangers need to be properly positioned no more than three feet of space between one another.

Seams:

Gutter seams are the source at which the most damage can occur. Sometimes the sections of a gutter will separate at the seam completely. It is important to keep the number of seams to a minimum when installing gutters in fact, seamless gutters are made to help prevent this issue.

Gutter Damage During Installation:

When hanging gutters, it is important to be cautious to prevent damage to the gutters (and to yourself). Bent or dented gutters should not be installed.

There are quiet a few issues that can arise when installing your homes new gutters. Before you jump into DIY gutter installation, contact a professional to get a free quote. This will allow you to visually see the cost difference between professional gutter installation that come with a warranty vs the time and cost of materials involved in doing it on your own.

As a full-service home improvement contractor servicing all Southeast Michigan, Kearns Brothers offers clients a wide range of services to meet their construction needs including: roofing, siding, window, masonry, chimneys, gutters, and insulation services. More information can be found at www.kearnsbrothers.com.

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