Before learning how to install gutters, confirm that your fascia is in good condition. Replace any damaged boards and remove any trim or molding attached to your fascia. Adding a little extra length to your measurements when purchasing your gutters will ensure you have enough material to protect your property and safeguard against any issues capping the ends. Keep in mind that installing new gutters must be done right in order to protect your home. For help with a gutter installation project at your home in Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, or Pennsylvania don’t hesitate to reach out to the experts at PJ Fitzpatrick for help.
How to Install Gutters Step By Step
For project planning:
- Measure the roof edges and write the dimensions on a sketch of your house.
- Mark where you want to place downspouts.
- Count the inside and outside corners and end caps so that you know how many pieces to buy.
- Measure wall height for your downspouts, adding 4 feet to account for extensions.
- You’ll need three elbows to build each downspout.
For gutter cutting and assembly:
- Build your gutters on the ground.
- Cut your gutter sections with duckbill tin snips.
- To ensure a good overlap, add 4 inches to gutter sections that will be joined.
- Add 2 inches to lengths that will overlap with corner pieces.
- Add 1 inch to lengths that will have end caps.
- Cut down each side and then bend the bottom slightly and cut across.
- To create seams, cut a notch on the inside edge of the gutter’s front lip.
- You need a 4-inch notch for seams joining sections and a 2-inch notch for seams joining corners.
- Plan seams so that overlapping pieces run in the same direction as water flow.
- Put a bead of gutter sealant 1-1/2 inches from the overlapping edge.
- Take the piece with the gutter sealant and overlap its front lip with the notched lip of the connecting piece.
- Drill 1/8-inch holes along the seam, placing two holes on the sides and bottom.
- Insert rivets through the holes with a pop rivet gun.
- Run caulk along inside gutter seam and cover each rivet with a dab.
- Attach end caps with rivets and gutter sealant.
For cutting downspouts:
- On the bottom of the gutter, mark the center of the location where you intend to place a downspout.
- Center the lower flange of the downspout connector over the mark and trace around it.
- With a hammer and chisel, start a hole inside the marked area.
- Insert offset tin snips into the chisel hole and cut out the hole.
- Slide the downspout connector through the inside of the gutter and drill rivet holes.
- Take out the piece and run gutter sealant around the hole.
- Put the piece back in and rivet in place.
For marking the gutter slope:
- Drive a nail into the fascia 1/2 inch below shingles where the high end of gutter will go.
- Calculate the placement of the low end of the gutter by adding 1/4 inch for every 10 feet of roof edge.
- Add 1/2 inch to that calculation and place the second nail that far down from the shingles.
- Run a chalk line between the nails and snap a mark.
For attaching and flashing the gutters:
- Line up gutter with sloped chalk line on the fascia.
- Attach gutter to fascia with 1-1/4-inch stainless steel hex head sheet metal screws.
- Place screws every 2 feet.
- Slide gutter flashing under shingles and roofing paper and over back side of gutter.
- Attach flashing with roofing nails every 2 feet.
- Overlap flashing pieces by 2 inches.
- Click gutter hanging straps under outer gutter lip.
- Drive screws through the hanging straps into the flashing and fascia.
- Place straps every 2 feet.
For building downspouts:
- Place an elbow into the downspout connector.
- Set the second elbow against the house wall and measure the distance between elbows.
- Add 1-1/2 inches to the measurement.
- Cut a downspout section with a hacksaw.
- Use the crimpers to crimp one end of the piece.
- The crimped end will go into the second elbow against the wall.
- Connect pieces with 1/4-inch hex head sheet metal screws.
- Attach downspout brackets to wall beneath second elbow.
- Connect the downspout to the second elbow with screws.
- Insert downspout into brackets and secure with screws.
- Attach the final elbow at the bottom along with another downspout piece to send water away from your house.