How to Install Gutters
Rain gutters protect your house from water damage. You can have gutters installed professionally for a huge chunk of money or learn how to install gutters your self by following the steps below.
The following are 10 simple steps for installing gutters.
1. Measure the Slope of Your Eaves
Using a level attached to a string, work out the slope of the eaves. Your rain gutters have to slope at least 1/4 inch for every ten feet to provide proper drainage, otherwise you’re wasting your time.
2. Measure and Mark
First make a level reference line, then make a second mark one fourth of an inch below that line to indicate the correct slope. If you are unlucky enough to have portions of the gutter with turns or elbows on each end, work out the length for the straight section by holding the elbows in place and making a mark at their ends. Remember to subtract a quarter inch to allow room for the seams that you’ll be installing later.
3. Cut Your Gutter to Size
It is time to mark the gutter sections using a combination square or some other marking assistant to carry the line all the way around. Pull out your heavy-duty tin snips in order to cut the piece to the proper length.
4. Mount Your Gutters
Start by snapping the brackets into place six inches from each end of the gutter and then only every 18 to 24 inches depending on how thorough you want to be. Mount the gutters by driving a screw through each bracket and into the facing board on the eaves of the roof.
5. Prepping for the Downspout
Holding your new gutter in place, make a mark at the location for the downspout hole. First cut a square hole in the bottom of the gutter with punch mark in each corner and use a jigsaw or sabre saw to finish the job. Be careful that you filed smooth edges when you’re done.
6. Install the Downspout Connector
Using silicone sealant, attach the lip of the downspout connector to the cutout you made earlier. Press this into place then secure it with short metal screws, the shorter the better. Now it is time to install an end cap into the last gutter and crimping its edges.
7. Attach Your Gutter to Your Eaves and Cut and Fit the Downspout
Drive screws through each gutter bracket and into the facing board of the eaves of the roof. You can now cut and fit the downspout pieces together, but make sure that the tapered end of the downspout is facing down.
8. Connecting Your Gutter Sections
Finally — you can connect the straight sections of the gutter one to another and the corner angles as well, using a two-inch strip of aluminum that construction workers call “seamers”. Seamers overlap the joints and fills in the gap left by earlier construction. Make the joints water tight by applying a bead of sealant on the inside.
10. Testing the Gutters
The final gutter installation step! After you let the sealant dry overnight put a garden hose in the end away from the downspout to check to make sure the water is flowing toward and into the downspout and that there is no leakage at the joints.