How to install gutters (and why the pros usually handle it)

Are you thinking about replacing or installing gutters on your Atlanta home? First, take some time to understand how a gutter system works, how much it can cost, and why you shouldn’t include this one on your DIY list.

How to install gutters

When professionals tackle this project, this is how the process goes:

  • The first step involves making a detailed plan of the system’s design, ensuring that gutters will effectively drain rain water away from your home and its foundation.
  • The contractors then measure the areas where the gutters will go, starting with the roof’s edges and including the pipes that will extend down and away from the home. The measurements always include extra footage of gutter sections to account for waste from cutting sections to fit the system together.
  • They calculate the other components they’ll need, including end pieces, corners, elbows and brackets.
  • Starting at the top of the roof, they install the first section of gutter, using a half-inch slope from the starting point on one end to the finish point on the other end of one section. They continue around the roof, using connectors to join the sections of gutter.
  • The installer then seals the connections with caulk to avoid leaks.
  • Brackets are installed down the side of the home, and the downspouts are put into place.

Why use a professional installer?

Unless you’re a highly skilled handyman, gutter installation should be a job for the pros. Expert gutter installers know how to optimize drainage, and they also know how to properly install the system to promote durability. The drainage provided by an effective gutter system can make or break the health of your home. Repeated basement floodings, mold buildup and costly mold removal can all be avoided with professional gutter installation. Finally, decorative and seamless gutters can be particularly complex to install, and generally call for a roofing expert’s knowledge.

How much do gutters cost?

The cost of the gutter system depends on the type of materials and the cost of labor. In general, vinyl gutters cost the least — $360 to $600 for a smaller home, and up to $1,250 for a medium-sized home. Aluminum gutters run in the mid-range: Gutters for a small home cost between $500 and $1,200, while a medium-size home could run you as much as $2,400. On the high end, copper gutters top the charts at $6,250 for a medium home, with a smaller home system ranging between $1,800 and $3,000. Costs also often depend on the type of house you own. Your Gwinnett County ranch-style house, for example, will have different requirements than a Hall County gambrel roof.

Also, consider choosing a gutter system that includes a gutter guard, which greatly reduces maintenance. If you don’t want to dedicate a lot of time and energy to cleaning your gutters, guards can make all the difference.

Get more advice about how to install gutters, or to schedule a free consultation with Findlay Roofing.

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