Rain gutters are installed at a slight angle so water drains out of them instead of sitting stagnant. Gutters don’t appear slanted because installation companies know exactly what they’re doing, but we assure you they are.
Gutters should have a specific slope based on this formula:
¼ of an inch of drop per 10 feet of horizontal gutter
This calculation tells a gutter installation technician where to attach the downspout so that heavy amounts of precipitation can flow unobstructed from your roof. The side of your home’s roof where the downspouts are located is the side that should be the lower end.
Longer areas of gutter, like across the front of a house, require a downspout on each side. When this is happening, the rain gutters will need to be pitched from the middle, meaning that the middle of the roofline will be the absolute highest point, and both of the downspouts should be lower than this center point.
Gutter Pitch Problems
If gutters are installed the wrong way or if they have become loose or bent at all, it can create problems that can be expensive and complex to fix.
When there is something wrong with your gutter pitch, it can cause water to back up in your gutter channels. Water is a common problem around the house, as it can result in all of the following issues:
- Water in the gutters can lead to roof damage due to the standing water. When it doesn’t flow from the gutters, water can get underneath the shingles and cause harm to the fascia, sub-roofing and even leak inside your house.
- Standing rain water is one way mildew and mold can grow on of your roof, gutters or siding. Removing mold is a very hard project, especially if it appears on your roof. Mold is known for destroying organic materials (many of which are common in your house) and even making people feel ill.
- The weight of standing water inside your rain gutters can lead them to tear away from your roof. The gutters can tear out fasteners from the siding, destroying your vinyl or other exterior material. It can also damage landscaping and windows.
Do You Have a Gutter Pitch Problem?
To be confident your gutters are correctly pitched, here are a few things you can check:
Look for Hanging Spots
Like we said above, you shouldn’t be able to notice the slope of your rain gutters. If you can visibly tell where the low point is, it is an indication that your gutter is damaged or that it is getting old.
You should still be able to notice a dip in the gutters from below, so this is a safe job that homeowners can do on their own, with both feet on the ground.
Check for Standing Water
Water follows the path of least resistance, so any amount of water inside of your gutters is a problem. If possible, inspect the gutters immediately after rainfall so you can see the draining of the water.
This could require you to climb a ladder, so exercise caution. If you don’t feel comfortable doing this, you can have a handyman or a gutter specialist from Overland Park Gutters do it for you.
Inspect for Shingle Particles
Any tiny granules remaining in the gutters from your shingles means the gutters may not have enough slope, so the water can’t carry these materials away. Seeing grit or sludge inside of your gutters is common after having a new roof installed because it will tend to shed excess particles in the first few years.
You can climb up and look, or you might see some of the particles making their way out of your gutters from the downspouts. If you notice a little in these areas, chances are there is more that is unable to make its way out.
Why is There Overflow?
Gutter overflow is sometimes caused by a blockage, but it can also be due to incorrect gutter pitch. If 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 landscaping.
To stop the possibility of 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 another indicator that there is a gutter pitch problem.
Professional Gutter Damage Repair
If your gutter pitch gets distorted, it can result in many problems for your home. All of the problems above can let you determine if your gutter pitch is wrong.
No matter if your gutters were damaged during a storm or they were installed poorly to begin with, they need to be re-pitched if you want to prevent major home repairs, including damage to siding, leaks and landscape damage.
Gutter Repair in Overland Park
The first option will be repairing the existing gutters so the proper pitch is restored. If the gutters are in prime condition and undamaged, this should be the route Overland Park Gutters encourages.
To re-establish gutter pitch, Overland Park Gutters will loosen the gutter, but they won’t need to take it all the way down. This lowers labor costs and time. Then the technician will measure and determine the proper pitch and reinstall the gutters, adjusting fasteners if necessary, to fit the correct measurements.
Gutter Installation in Overland Park
If your gutters are severely damaged, or if they are rusting or wearing down with age, Overland Park Gutters may recommend to replace them rather than re-pitching them. This will be more economical over time and time-saving.
If your gutters need to be replaced, they will include new fasteners, hardware and downspouts. The installer should set the gutters at the proper pitch. You can reference the tips above to make sure the new installation is done correctly.