|Why is my gutter system important?|
Gutters are an important aspect of exterior water management for residential homes. A properly designed and installed gutter system helps to direct water away from the foundation of your home. This reduces the risk of wet basements and foundation walls, protects against landscape erosion, and can improve safety by directing water away from sidewalks and driveways.
Are there different styles of gutter systems available?
In general, residential gutters come in two sizes and are made of either galvanized, copper or aluminum metal in a standard "K" style. Other possibilities that might be found on an existing home would include plastic 4 inch sectional gutters or a half-round style gutter with round downspouts found on many turn-of-the-century-era homes. The typical gutter system found on most homes consists of 5 inch K-style gutters with 2 inch x 3 inch downspouts. An oversized gutter system would consist of larger 6 inch K-style gutters using 3 inch x 4 inch downspouts.
Most gutters look alike - is there a difference?
The most popular residential gutter type is seamless aluminum. Seamless aluminum gutter coil is available from manufacturers in three thicknesses: A light weight .025 gauge coil used only by the most budget-minded of installers and can be found on some new construction projects. Medium weight .027 gauge coil is considered standard builder-grade gutter, and heavy weight .032 gauge aluminum coil used when maximum strength and durability are desired. Light weight gutters often wrinkle and bow between anchors, allowing water coming off the shingle to drip behind the gutter at various points - most common on longer gutter runs. They are also often easily damaged by ladders, tree branches and basketballs and are more susceptible to tearing at the anchor if the gutter becomes filled with leaves, snow or ice.
Because All-Rite Gutters knows how important new gutters are to your home, we will never use light weight .025 gauge gutters. Our standard installations use medium weight .027 gauge coil.
Why do the gutter nails come out over and over again?
Gutters attached to the home either use a spike (long nail) and ferrule method or a hidden hanger with screw anchoring method. Some of the plastic gutters and half-round gutters may use a bracket attached to the fascia board.
For the spike to hold the gutter securely, the spike must be driven into solid wood. In normal modern construction the roof system consists of a 2x4 truss system, which creates the pitch of the roof and supports the roof decking. These trusses are generally spaced every 24 inches. The fascia board is the trim board the gutter sits on and is attached to the tail ends of the trusses. Using the spike and ferrule method of gutter attachment, the spike is driven through the gutter, through the fascia trim board and into the solid 2x4 wood truss. If the original installer missed the 2x4 when driving the gutter spike, the spike is simply floating in air once it passes through the fascia board and has nothing to grip to. No matter how many times the spike is hammered back in, with only air to grip - it will soon pull out again. In other cases, the spike has hit the truss tail, but over the course of the years, the wood has expanded and again, the spike has nothing to grip to. In these cases, the spike can be redirected a half inch of so and re-nailed into solid wood. While the spike and ferrule method was the standard for years, many gutter installation companies have changed to some form of the hidden hanger with screw anchoring method.