Gutters are installed at a slight angle so water flows out of them rather than remaining stagnant. They don’t look slanted because installation pros know exactly what they’re doing, but they are.
Gutters should have an angled slope based on this formula:
¼ of an inch of drop per 10 feet of gutter
This formula tells a gutter installation technician right where to attach the downspout so that even heavy amounts of rain can flow unobstructed from your roof. The side of your home’s roof where the downspouts are is the side that should be the lower end.
Longer areas of gutter, like across the front of a house, may require a downspout on each side. When this is the situation, the gutters will need to be pitched from the middle, which means that the center of the roofline will be the highest point, and both of the downspouts need to be lower than this middle point.
Gutter Pitch Problems
If gutters are installed incorrectly or if they have become loose or bent at all, it can cause problems that can be costly and difficult to repair.
When there is something wrong with your gutter pitch, it can make water back up in your gutters. Water is a typical problem around the house, as it can lead to all of the issues below:
- Water inside of the gutters can lead to roof damage due to the standing water. When water backs up in the gutters, water can get underneath the shingles and cause damage to the fascia, sub-roofing and even leak inside your house.
- Pooling water is one way mold and mildew can grow on areas of your roof, gutters or siding. Removing mold is a difficult project, especially when it grows on your roof. Mold is known for destroying organic materials (many of which are common in your home) and even making people feel ill.
- The weight of standing water inside your rain gutters can cause them to pull away from your home. The gutters can pull fasteners from the siding, damaging your vinyl or other exterior material. It can also ruin surrounding landscaping and windows.
Do You Have a Gutter Pitch Problem?
To be confident your gutters are correctly pitched, here are a some of the things you can check:
Look for Hanging Spots
Like we said before, you shouldn’t be able to notice the slope of your gutters. If you can visibly identify where the low spot is, this is a sign that your gutter has been damaged or that it is getting old.
You should still be able to see a dip in the gutters from below, so this is a safe job that you can do on your own, with both feet on the ground.
Check for Standing Water
Rain water follows the path of least resistance, so any amount of water in your home’s gutters is an issue. Try to examine the gutters immediately after rainfall so you can see the draining of the water.
This might require you to climb a ladder, so exercise caution. If you aren’t comfortable doing this, you can have a local handyman or a gutter specialist from Smyrna Gutter Service check it out for you.
Inspect for Shingle Particles
Any tiny granules remaining in the gutters from your shingles are a sign that the rain gutters may not have enough slope, so the water can’t carry these materials away. Grit or sludge inside of your gutters is common after getting a new roof installed because it will tend to shed excess granules in the first couple of years.
You can climb up and take a look, or you might notice some of the particles flowing out of your gutters by way of the downspouts. If you notice a small amount in these areas, there is a good chance there is more that can’t make its way out.
Why is There Overflow?
Gutter overflow is typically caused by a blockage, but it can also be because of incorrect gutter pitch. If rain water is flowing the wrong way, know as “back pitch,” you will probably see water overflowing from the end cap. This can damage to your roof, gutters and surrounding landscaping.
To remove the possibility of a blockage, schedule gutter cleaning at least once a year or install gutter guards. If you know the gutters are clean but there is still overflow, it’s one more sign that there is a gutter pitch problem.
Professional Gutter Damage Repair
When your gutter pitch gets distorted, it can lead to many problems for your home. All of the problems above can let you decide if your gutter pitch is wrong.
Regardless of whether your gutters were damaged or they were installed poorly to begin with, they need to be re-pitched in order to prevent significant home repairs, including damage to siding, leaks and landscape damage.
Gutter Repair in Smyrna
The most affordable option will be repairing the existing gutters so the correct pitch is restored. If the gutters are in excellent condition and undamaged, this should be the route Smyrna Gutter Service recommends.
To restore gutter pitch, Smyrna Gutter Service will loosen the gutter, but they won’t need to take it completely down. This lowers labor costs and time. Then the technician will measure and calculate the proper pitch and reinstall the gutters, moving fasteners if necessary, to fit the correct measurements.
Gutter Installation in Smyrna
If your gutters are severely damaged, or if they are rusting or wearing down with age, Smyrna Gutter Service may recommend that you replace them instead of re-pitching them. This can be more economical over time and time-saving.
If your gutters need to be replaced with new ones, they will include new fasteners, hardware and downspouts. The installer will set the gutters at the correct pitch. You can use our tips above to ensure the new installation was done correctly.