Seamless Gutters: Myth or Real Thing?

May 13, 2021
Seamless Gutters Myth or Real Thing

If you already own a home but don’t have a reliable gutter system that can withstand the changing seasons, seamless rain gutters may be the solution you need. These gutters are more durable and can be custom-made, making them more superior to other gutter types. With them, you will not experience most of the problems that regular gutters have.

Have You Heard of Seamless Gutters?

Seamless gutters are also known as rain gutters, eavestrough gutters, or house gutters and are made from different to collect water and redirect it away from the house. They are usually assembled at the site of installation to reduce the chances of error, especially with measurements. They are available in different styles and sizes, and they do not have seams because they are installed in straight linear lines. Their seamless nature makes them less susceptible to regular gutters with seams, such as leaking and missing parts. Some of the common materials used with these gutters are copper, galvalume, and aluminum. Most contractors also prefer the K-style or half-round styles.

Being non-sectional means, these gutters reduce the chances of water leaking to the foundation or causing damage to other areas like the walls. The gutters can also expand and contract easily, making them perfect for hot and cold weather changes.

Difference between Seamless Gutters and Standard Gutters

The main difference between standard and seamless gutters is the construction. While the former has several sections, the latter runs continuously through the edge of the roof. They also have differences in other areas such as:

Installation process: Seamless gutters are usually measured and installed at the job site, which reduces the error margin significantly. The contractor uses a gutter forming machine to make a continuous running gutter that fits the actual space.

Cost: Although repairing seamless gutters is more challenging, the cost is almost the same as the standard gutters. Standard gutters may end up being more costly because they tend to need frequent repairs with time.

Strength: Seamless gutters tend to be stronger than standard ones because they do not have pieces joined together. The more pieces present in a gutter, the more it is likely to leak. These gutters are also more secure and are not likely to become loose or disengage from the roof edge.

How To Pick Seamless Gutter Size

Seamless gutters are mostly available in two common sizes, namely 5-inch and 6-inch gutters. The smaller 5-inch is very popular, but most homeowners have started going for the bigger 6-inch gutters. Those made from aluminum are bigger and are mostly used in industrial or commercial buildings.

When considering a seamless gutter size, you must think about the amount of water they will hold. The bigger the eavestrough, the more water it will hold. Other considerations to think about are:

  • Roofline
  • Roof pitch
  • Surface area to be covered

The following qualifications and features of the gutters can help you make a more informed decision.

5″ gutters are ideal when:

  • The length of the gutter area is 40′ or less and only needs one downspout. It can also be used in areas exceeding 40′, but, in that case, there should be two downspouts.
  • Gutters do not overflow, whether the rain is normal or not.
  • The roof has upper and lower gutters, with the upper gutters not draining into the lower 5-inch gutters.

6″ gutters are ideal when:

  • The gutter length is more than 40′, but it can only have one downspout
  • The upper gutter is designed to drain into the lower one
  • The roofline leads a lot of water into the gutters, or the area experiences a lot of rainfall

Some valleys cause water to flow at very high speeds or cause an overflow when it rains

How Long Do They Last?

The type of material used for making the seamless gutters will determine how long they last. The coil and accessories used, together with the quality of installation, also play a role in the longevity of seamless gutters.

Cool and accessories

Galvalume, aluminum, and copper are the main materials used in making seamless gutter coils, and each of them has different lifespans. For instance, copper can last up to 100 years, while aluminum and galvanize can last up to 60 and 40 years, respectively. These materials get broken down by UV rays and other weather elements, and they end up lasting between 15 to 30 years.

Installation

Professional installation can increase the longevity of the gutters, while poor installation will reduce their lifespan. Good contractors will follow the proper procedures and use the right elements instead of going for shortcuts. It starts with the selection of the right sealers, which are not silicon. A quality sealer will last longer and provide more value even if it costs more. The fasteners and coating used on them also matter.

Step-by-step Instruction to Seamless Gutter Installation

Since seamless rain gutters are customized to fit into each home, they are measured and cut at the job site. Portable machines are essential in proper installation because they ensure the gutters are formed according to the specifications of the roof being worked on. The following steps must be followed during installation.

Measuring

Two ladders will be needed for this first step, one at each end of the gutter. Two people are necessary for this step, with one person pulling a measuring tape from the right side towards the left. This direction is important because that is how the material comes out of the machine.

Specify the wall where the gutter will be and measure it from right to left. Mark the first location at 2’1” and the second outlet at 40’5”. The total length of the section will be 42’6”. When done pulling the measurements, they can be laid out on the machine the same way.

Tips for using box mitres

  • When measuring seamless gutters to or from an outside corner, they have to be the exact length of the fascia.
  • Gutters measured to or from an inside corner should be 6″ short of the fascia if the gutter being used is 5″, and 7″ if the gutter is 6″.
  • Gutters that go from one end to another without a corner but use an end cap should be measured according to the edge of the shingles. However, the end cap should have an extra ½” to give enough room for insertion into the gutter.
  • Starting the measurements from the shingle edge is vital to catch the water that drains off at the horizontal edge of the roof. This can be achieved if the person on the right holds the tape past the beginning shingle edge or if they add 1/2” to the measurement.

The installation

For building, start by running out three or four feet of gutter from the machine. If the gutter will need a right cap, put it in place and secure it by crimping and sealing. Next, measure the distance to the first outlet, and if the gutter is not enough, run more gutter until you get the desired length. However, it should not exceed three feet from where you will be working on the outlet. When done, mark the area and cut the hole for the outlet.

Creating the outlet hole

A gutter outlet hole can be cut in two different ways. The first one involves using a Stanley blade to splice an X and tabbing down the four ears. The second way involves:

  • Marking the lower part of the gutter with an actual outlet.
  • Pre-drilling the middle.
  • Using tinsnips to snip out the hole.

After cutting the outlet hole, install the outlet and seal it. Use the same procedure for the next outlet, but if there isn’t one, run the gutter out and measure the cut-off section. One to three feet should provide enough room to cut the right length of the gutter unless you are using a guillotine, in which case you measure until the right side of the blade.

Gutter brackets

Hidden gutter brackets should always be installed 24 to 32 inches apart before cutting. The brackets are usually hooked on the gutter’s lip and pushed into place. They can be free-floating or clipped to the back, but regardless, they must have a consistent height along the edge.

The mounting screws should first be installed into the back of the gutter through the brackets. They should not be installed more than ¼” into the gutter; otherwise, the penetration will hinder installation while adjusting the pitch. After starting the hanger screws, you can make the length cut before putting in the left cap and crimping it if necessary.

Mounting

Gutters must always be levelled or pitched towards the downspout. A 1/8 inch to ¼ inch for every 10 inches is the most preferable. However, if there is too much water draining into the eavestrough, the gutters will need a steeper pitch. You must also be careful to ensure the slope does not interfere with the house’s aesthetic appeal. That means only increasing the pitch if the gutter is hidden or if water accumulates too quickly.

Use a chalk line to mark a line on the fascia board. That line will serve as the bottom or top edge of the gutter. It is easier to use the bottom edge because the roof shingles prevent the top line from being snapped and keep them invisible during the seamless gutter installation.

Protecting the gutter

Gutter covers are essential considerations that should not be overlooked during marking. They are the most effective gutter protection measures, but the height of the mounting surface affects how they work. Most of the installation covers usually come with instructions that will make them easier to install.

What to Do Next?

D’Angelo & Sons has the best seamless eavestrough repair and installation services. The company uses superior gutter materials and tools to ensure the installation is done properly. You can get the most value from seamless gutters when you buy from the right distributors and hire a company that will listen to your exact needs. Call us today, and we will make sure you get the best permanent gutter solutions.

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