Gutters are installed at a slight angle so water flows out of them instead of remaining stagnant. They don’t appear slanted because installation companies know exactly what they’re doing, but they are.
Gutters should have a specific slope based on this formula:
¼ of an inch of drop per 10 feet of gutter
This formula tells a gutter installation technician where to place the downspout so that even heavy amounts of rain can flow smoothly from your roof. The side of your roof where the downspouts are located is the side that should be lower.
Long sections of gutter, like across the front of a house, may require a downspout on both sides. When this is the case, the gutters will need to be pitched from the middle, which means that the center of the roofline will be the highest point, and both downspouts should be lower than this center point.
Gutter Pitch Problems
If gutters are installed the wrong way or if they are loose or bent at all, it can create problems that might be costly and complex to fix.
When there is something wrong with your gutter pitch, it can make water back up in your gutter channels. Water is a common problem around the home, as it can result in all of the following issues:
- Rain inside of the gutters can lead to roof damage because of the standing water. When water doesn’t flow from the gutters, water can get underneath the shingles and cause harm to the fascia, sub-roofing and even get inside your house.
- Pooling rain water is one way mildew and mold can grow on sections of your roof, gutters or siding. Removing mold is a very hard project, especially if it grows on your roof. Mold is known for destroying organic materials (many of which exist in your house) and even making people feel ill.
- The weight of blocked water in your rain gutters can lead them to pull away from your roof. The gutters can tear out fasteners from the walls, destroying your vinyl or other exterior material. It can also ruin landscaping and windows.
Do You Have a Gutter Pitch Problem?
To ensure your gutters are properly pitched, here are a some of the things you can check:
Look for Hanging Spots
Like we mentioned above, you shouldn’t be able to notice the slope of your gutters. If you can noticeably tell where the low point is, this is an indication that your gutter has been damaged or that it is getting worn out.
You should still be able to notice a dip in the gutters from below, so this is a safe job that homeowners can do on their own, with both feet on the ground.
Check for Standing Water
Rain water follows the path of least resistance, so any amount of water inside of your gutters is a problem. Try to examine the gutters immediately after rainfall so you can see the flow of the water.
This might require 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 Indy Gutters, Inc. do it for you.
Inspect for Shingle Particles
Any small granules remaining in the gutters from your shingles are a sign that the gutters might not have enough slope, so the water can’t carry these materials away. Grit or sludge inside of your gutters is common after having a new roof installed because it will tend to lose a lot of excess particles in the first couple of years.
You can climb up and take a look, or you may notice some of these particles flowing out of your gutters from the downspouts. If you see a little in these areas, there is a good chance there is more that can’t make its way out.
Why is There Overflow?
Gutter overflow is usually caused by a blockage, but it can also be due to incorrect gutter pitch. If rain water is flowing the wrong direction, know as “back pitch,” you will probably see water overflowing from the end cap. This can cause damage to your roof, gutters and landscaping.
To remove 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 indicator that there is a gutter pitch problem.
Professional Gutter Damage Repair
When your gutter pitch gets distorted, it can create a lot of problems for your home. All of the problems above can let you determine if your gutter pitch is off.
No matter if your rain gutters were damaged during a storm or they were installed poorly to begin with, they need to be re-pitched if you want to prevent significant home repairs, including damage to siding, leaks and landscape damage.
Gutter Repair in Indianapolis
The first option will be repairing the existing gutters so the pitch is restored. If the rain gutters are in good condition and undamaged, this should be the route Indy Gutters, Inc. encourages.
To correct gutter pitch, Indy Gutters, Inc. will loosen the gutter, but they won’t have to take it totally down. This saves labor costs and time. Then the technician will measure and determine the pitch needed and reinstall the gutters, adjusting fasteners if necessary, to fit the specific measurements.
Gutter Installation in Indianapolis
If your rain gutters are severely damaged, or if they are rusting or wearing down with age, Indy Gutters, Inc. may recommend to replace them instead of re-pitching them. This can be more economical in the long run and time-saving.
If your gutters have to be replaced with new ones, they will include new fasteners, hardware and downspouts. The installer will set the gutters at the correct pitch. You can reference our tips above to ensure the new installation is done the right way.