Fraud Blocker
top of page
  • Writer's pictureColorado Gutter Professionals

Stop Rain Damage: DIY Guide to Installing Gutters and Downspouts

Installing rain gutters is one of the best ways to protect your home from water damage. In this comprehensive DIY guide from a home improvement specialist in Denver, you'll learn everything you need to know to keep rainwater away from your home's foundation.

Stop Rain Damage: DIY Guide to Installing Gutters and Downspouts

Article Outline

Why Proper Rain Gutter Installation Matters 

Rain gutters are important - they collect rainwater runoff from your roof and divert it from your home through downspouts. Without functioning gutters, rainwater can pool around the base of your home, seeping into the ground near your foundation. This can lead to flooding, mold growth, cracked foundations, and more.

Installing gutters ensures rainwater is carried several feet away from your house. This protects your landscaping, basement, and foundation from the damaging effects of excess moisture. Proper gutter installation is crucial for any home.

Choose the Right Gutter System

The most common gutter materials are aluminum and galvanized steel. Aluminum gutters are affordable, easy to install, and resist rust. Galvanized steel is stronger but requires more maintenance. Many homeowners opt for aluminum gutters available at home centers for easy DIY installation.

Determine the total length of the gutter by measuring the lower edge of the roof's fascia board where gutters will be installed. Purchase at least the full length of the fascia and add 10% more to account for corners and connections. 

You'll also need:

  • Gutter brackets to attach and secure the gutter to the fascia board

  • End caps to seal the ends of the gutter runs

  • Corners to connect gutter sections at corners

  • Downspout outlets to connect downspouts to the gutters

  • Downspouts carry water from the gutters to the ground

Prepare the Installation Area

Before installing new gutters, inspect the roof fascia and soffit for damage or deterioration and make repairs. The fascia board should be sound, level, and securely fastened to lookouts or rafter tails.

Use a chalk line to snap a straight line on the center of the fascia board where you'll mount the gutter brackets. This shows the slope your gutters need for proper drainage.

Mounting and Installing the Gutters

Cut gutter sections to size with tin snips, allowing for overlap at connections. Use drop outlets, corners, and end caps where needed. 

Attach gutter brackets to the fascia every 24 to 32 inches. Use #8-32 stainless steel hex head sheet metal screws through the back of the gutter and into the fascia to fasten the gutter to the fascia board securely—level and slope gutters slightly toward downspouts.

Join sections with rivets, screws, or sealant to create a continuous gutter run. Overlap joints at least 1 inch so water can flow through the connections between the two sections of the gutter.

Install downspout outlets at the end of gutter runs, angled to match the gutter slope. Attach downspouts and secure them to the house with brackets every 10 feet or less. Make sure the tapered end of the downspout is facing away from the foundation of your house.

Tips for Proper Gutter Slope and Drainage

  • Gutters work best with a slope of 1/4 inch for every 10 feet of gutter. Measure the slope from the highest point of the gutter to the downspout outlet.

  • Run gutters just slightly below the roof line so they can effectively collect runoff.

  • Use downspouts at least every 40 feet of gutter run.

  • Angle gutters so water runs toward downspouts for efficient drainage.

  • Make sure downspouts direct water 5 feet away from the house foundation.

  • Attach an aluminum strip to extend the end of the downspout and divert rainwater away from the foundation.

Connecting Gutters Properly

  • Use gutter corner pieces to connect separate gutter runs at corners.

  • Connect the downspouts to the gutters via downspout outlets sealing joints with silicone sealant.

  • Rivet an aluminum strip to the fascia board and under flashing to divert rainwater from behind gutters.

  • Attach gutter straps or brackets every 24-32 inches to secure the gutters properly.

  • Slope gutters 1/4 inch upward for every 10 feet toward downspouts for proper drainage.

Maintaining Your New Gutter System 

Here are some tips for keeping gutters clear and functioning properly:

  • Inspect gutters seasonally and clear out leaves or debris

  • Make sure hangers and gutter joints are secure

  • Patch any leaks or holes with gutter sealant

  • Refasten any loose downspout or gutter straps

  • Realign gutters that pitch improperly and no longer slope enough 

Key Takeaways for DIY Gutter Installation

  • Measure fascia board length to determine the gutter amount needed and preferably add 1 inch to each side.

  • While holding the gutter in place attach the hidden hangers to your gutter, drip edge and fascia.

  • Check gutter slope and alignment as you assemble sections

  • Use proper outlet placement and downspout angles

  • Secure downspouts and fasten all gutter hardware tightly

  • Inspect and clean gutters regularly to maximize effectiveness

I hope this Denver home improvement specialist guide has helped explain proper gutter installation in a way that will enable you to DIY. Properly installing rain gutters will protect your home's foundation and landscaping for years to come.

16 views0 comments


bottom of page