What is Gutter Pitch?
Rain gutters are installed at a slight angle so water drains out of them rather than sitting stagnant. Gutters don’t appear slanted because installation pros know exactly what they’re doing, but we assure you they are.
Gutters should have an angled slope based on this formula:
¼ of an inch of drop per 10 feet of horizontal gutter
This calculation tells a gutter installation technician right where to attach the downspout so that even heavy amounts of precipitation can flow smoothly from your roof. The side of your home’s roof where the downspouts are located is the side that should be lower.
Longer sections of gutter, like across the front of a home, may require a downspout on both sides. When this is happening, the gutters will need to be pitched from the middle, which means that the middle of the roofline will be the highest point, and both of the downspouts should be lower than this center point.
Gutter Pitch Problems
If your gutters are installed incorrectly or if they have become loose or bent at all, it can cause problems that can be costly and complex to repair.
When your gutter pitch is wrong, it can cause water to back up in your gutter channels. Water is a typical issue around the house, as it can result in all of the following issues:
- Water in the gutters can lead to roof damage because of the standing water. When rain 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 of your roof, gutters or siding. Removing mold is a very hard project, especially when 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 blocked water in your gutters can cause them to tear away from your home. The gutters can tear out fasteners from the walls, damaging 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 properly pitched, here are a some of the things you can do:
Look for Hanging Spots
Like we said above, you shouldn’t be able to see the slope of your rain gutters. If you can noticeably tell where the low spot is, it is an indication 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 naturally follows the path of least resistance, so any amount of water inside of your home’s gutters is a problem. Try to inspect the gutters immediately after rainfall so you can see the flow of the water.
This may force you to climb a ladder, so exercise caution. If you aren’t comfortable doing this, you can have a handyman or a gutter specialist from TruClean Toms River Gutters check it out for you.
Inspect for Shingle Particles
Any little granules left behind in the gutters from your roof shingles means the rain gutters might not have enough slope, so the water can’t carry these heavier materials out. Grit or sludge in your gutters is more common after having a new roof installed because it will tend to shed excess particles in the first couple of years.
You can climb up a ladder and look, or you may notice some of the particles flowing out of your gutters from the downspouts. If you see a small amount in these areas, chances are 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 water is flowing the wrong way, know as “back pitch,” you will see water overflowing at the end cap. This can problems for your roof, gutters and nearby landscaping.
To prevent the possibility of a blockage, schedule gutter cleaning at least once a year or install gutter guards. If the gutters are clean but there are still signs of overflow, it’s another sign that there is a gutter pitch problem.
Professional Gutter Damage Repair
If your gutter pitch gets incorrect, it can lead to several problems for your house. All of the problems above can let you determine if your gutter pitch is not right.
Regardless of whether your rain gutters were damaged during a storm or they were installed poorly to begin with, they need to be re-pitched in order to prevent expensive home repairs, including damage to siding, leaks and landscape damage.
Gutter Repair in Toms River
The first option will be repairing your existing gutters so the correct pitch is restored. If the rain gutters are in prime condition and undamaged, this should be the route TruClean Toms River Gutters recommends.
To re-establish gutter pitch, TruClean Toms River Gutters will loosen the gutter, but they won’t need to take it completely down. This saves labor costs and time. Then the technician will measure and determine the correct pitch and reinstall the gutters, relocating fasteners if necessary, to fit the correct measurements.
Gutter Installation in Toms River
If your gutters are severely damaged, or if they are rusting or wearing down with age, TruClean Toms River Gutters may recommend to replace them rather than re-pitching them. This can be more economical over time and time-saving.
If your gutters have to be replaced, they will include new fasteners, hardware and downspouts. The installer will set the gutters at the proper pitch. You can use the tips above to make sure the new installation is done the right way.