Should you slope residential gutters?

Written by george n. root iii | 13/05/2017

Rain gutters are something you see on every home, yet it can be easy to take their installation for granted. In order for rain gutters on residential homes to do their job properly, they must be installed so that they allow rainwater to run in a direction away from the important parts of a home. A rain gutter helps to reduce damage to your foundation and the rest of your home by ensuring that the rainwater is funnelled to a place that is designed to handle the run-off.

Slope Explanation

If you look at a properly installed gutter on a home, you may notice that the gutter seems to be on an angle that leads to the downspout. That angle is referred to as the gutter's slope, or the pitch of the gutter. The slope of the gutter is necessary because water runs downhill, and a perfectly level gutter will do nothing to move the water to the downspout. At the base of the downspout is a channelling mechanism that helps to move rainwater away from the home and out into the yard, or down a channel that runs out to the water drains in the street. Without gutters, the water would simply fall over the edge of the roof, causing damage to the roof and the roof overhang and loosening the ground, causing damage to the structure's foundation.

Creating Slope

The easiest way to create the proper slope on your residential gutters is first to measure which way your roof slopes. The water will run easier if it is not trying to run one way off the roof and then another way down the gutter. Put a level on your roof overhang to determine which way the roof slopes. Then line up the very top of the gutter with the roof level at the point where the gutter slope will start. The end of the slope should fall halfway between the top of the overhang and the bottom. This will give sufficient angle for the water to run and allow your gutters to be able to capture all of the water that runs off your roof.

Professional Installation

Once you understand why and how a residential gutter is sloped, you have enough information to install a gutter properly. According to Don Vandervort's HomeTips.com, however, you do not save a lot of money by doing it yourself. Installing a gutter is a simple process that takes a professional only minutes to complete. If you would rather have a contractor install your gutters, you can do so without the fear of paying hundreds of dollars in extra labour charges.

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