All gutters are installed at a slight angle so that water drains out of them rather than sitting stagnant. They don’t appear slanted because installation companies know what they’re doing, but we assure you they are.
Gutters should have an angled slope based on this formula:
¼ of an inch of drop per 10 feet of gutter
This formula tells your gutter installation technician right where to fasten the downspout so that heavier amounts of rain can flow smoothly from your roof. The side of your home’s roof where the downspouts are located is the side that should be lower.
Longer sections of gutter, like across the front of a house, may require a downspout on each side. When this is the situation, the rain gutters will be pitched from the middle, meaning that the middle of the roofline will be the absolute highest point, and both downspouts should be lower than this middle point.
Gutter Pitch Problems
If gutters are installed incorrectly or if they have become loose or bent, it can lead to problems that might be expensive and complex to fix.
When there is a gutter pitch problem, it can cause water to back up in your gutters. Water is a typical problem around the house, as it can lead to all of the following issues:
- Water inside of the gutters can lead to roof damage because of the standing water. When it doesn’t flow from the gutters, water can get underneath the shingles and cause damage to the fascia, sub-roofing and even get inside your home.
- Pooling water is one way mildew and mold can grow on areas of your roof, gutters or siding. Removing mold is a challenging task, especially if it grows on your roof. Mold is known for ruining organic materials (many of which are common in your home) and making people feel ill.
- The weight of pooling water in your rain gutters can lead them to pull away from your house. The gutters can pull fasteners from the walls, damaging your vinyl or other exterior materials. It can also damage landscaping and windows.
Do You Have a Gutter Pitch Problem?
To make sure your gutters are properly pitched, here are a few things you can check:
Look for Hanging Spots
Like we mentioned before, you shouldn’t be able to see the slope of your gutters. If you can visibly identify where the low point is, this is an indication that your gutter is damaged or it is getting old.
You should still be able to see a dip in the gutters from below, so this is a safe job that you can do on your own, with their feet on the ground.
Check for Standing Water
Rain water naturally follows the path of least resistance, so any amount of water in your gutters is an issue. Try to examine the gutters right after rainfall so you can see the flow of the water.
This may require you to climb a ladder, so be careful. If you aren’t comfortable doing this, you can have a handyman or a gutter specialist from St. Louis Gutter Solutions do it for you.
Inspect for Shingle Particles
Any little granules remaining in the gutters from your shingles are a sign that the rain gutters might not have enough slope, so the water can’t carry these materials away. Seeing grit or sludge in your gutters is more common after getting a new roof installed because it will tend to shed excess particles in the first couple of years.
You can climb up a ladder and take a look, or you may notice some of these particles making their way out of your gutters through the downspouts. If you notice 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 the result of incorrect gutter pitch. If water is flowing in the wrong direction, know as “back pitch,” you will see water overflowing at the end cap. This can damage to your roof, gutters and nearby landscaping.
To prevent the possibility of a blockage, schedule gutter cleaning at least once a year or install gutter guards. If the gutters are clean but there is still overflow, it’s another indicator that there is a gutter pitch problem.
Professional Gutter Damage Repair
When your gutter pitch gets distorted, it can result in a lot of problems for your house. All of the problems above can let you determine if your gutter pitch is wrong.
No matter if your rain gutters were damaged or if they were installed poorly to begin with, they need to be re-pitched in order to prevent significant home repairs, including damage to siding, leaks and landscape damage.
Gutter Repair in St. Louis
The most affordable option will be repairing your existing gutters so the proper pitch is restored. If the gutters are in excellent condition and undamaged, this will be the route St. Louis Gutter Solutions encourages.
To re-establish gutter pitch, St. Louis Gutter Solutions will loosen the gutter, but they won’t need to take it totally down. This saves labor costs and time. Then the technician will measure and determine the correct pitch and reinstall the gutters, adjusting fasteners if necessary, to fit the correct measurements.
Gutter Installation in St. Louis
If your rain gutters are permanently damaged, or if they are starting to rust or wear down with age, St. Louis Gutter Solutions may recommend that you replace them rather than re-pitching them. This will be more economical in the long run and time-saving.
If your gutters need to be replaced with new ones, they will include new fasteners, hardware and downspouts. The installer will set the gutters at the appropriate pitch. You can reference our tips above to make sure the new installation was done the right way.