What is Gutter Pitch?

correcting gutter pitch

All gutters are installed at a slight angle so water flows out of them instead of remaining stagnant. Gutters don’t appear slanted because installation companies know what they’re doing, but we assure you they are.

Gutters have an angled slope based on this formula:

¼ of an inch of drop per 10 feet of horizontal gutter

This calculation tells your gutter installation technician where to place the downspout so that heavier amounts of precipitation can flow smoothly from your roof. The side of your roof where the downspouts are located is the side that should be the lower end.

Longer sections of gutter, like across the front of a home, require a downspout on each side. When this is the situation, the gutters will be pitched from the middle, which means that the center of the roofline will be the highest point, and both downspouts need to be lower than this center point.

Gutter Pitch Problems

If your gutters are installed the wrong way or if they are loose or bent, it can lead to problems that might be costly and difficult to fix.

When there is something wrong with your gutter pitch, it can cause water to back up in your gutter channels. Water is a common problem around the home, as it can cause all of the issues below:

  • Rain inside of the gutters can lead to roof damage because of the standing water. When rain backs up in the gutters, water can seep under the shingles and cause damage to the fascia, sub-roofing and even get inside your house.
  • Standing rain water is one way mildew and mold can grow on areas of your roof, gutters or siding. Getting rid of mold is a very hard project, especially when it grows on your roof. Mold is known for destroying organic materials (many of which are common in your home) and even making people feel ill.
  • The weight of blocked water inside your gutters can lead them to pull away from your home. 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 correctly pitched, here are a few things you can do:

Look for Hanging Spots

Like we mentioned above, you shouldn’t be able to notice the slope of your gutters. If you can noticeably identify where the low point is, it is an indication that your gutter has been 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 homeowners can do on their own, with their feet on the ground.

Check for Standing Water

Water naturally follows the path of least resistance, so any amount of water in your gutters is a problem. If possible, examine the gutters right after rainfall so you can see the draining of the water.

This may force you to climb a ladder, so exercise caution. If you don’t feel comfortable doing this, you can have a local handyman or a gutter specialist from CF Gutters Inc. do it for you.

Inspect for Shingle Particles

Any little granules left behind in the gutters from your shingles means the rain gutters may not have enough slope, so the water can’t carry these heavier materials out. Seeing grit or sludge inside of your gutters is common after getting a new roof installed because it will tend to lose a lot of excess granules in the first few years.

You can climb up and look, or you might see some of these particles making their way out of your gutters by way of the downspouts. If you notice a small amount 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 typically caused by a blockage, but it can also be the result of incorrect gutter pitch. If rain water is flowing the wrong way, called “back pitch,” you will see water overflowing from the end cap. This can cause damage to your roof, gutters and surrounding landscaping.

To prevent the possibility of blockage, schedule gutter cleaning at least once a year or install gutter guards. If you know the gutters are clean but you are still seeing overflow, it’s another sign that your gutter pitch may be wrong.

Professional Gutter Damage Repair

When your gutter pitch is distorted, it can create several problems for your house. All of the problems above can let you determine if your gutter pitch is wrong.

Regardless of whether your rain gutters were damaged during a storm or they were installed incorrectly to begin with, they need to be re-pitched in order to prevent major home repairs, including siding damage, leaks and landscape damage.

Gutter Repair in Cuyahoga Falls

The first option will be repairing the existing gutters so the correct pitch is restored. If the rain gutters are in excellent condition and undamaged, this should be the route CF Gutters Inc. recommends.

To re-establish gutter pitch, CF Gutters Inc. will loosen the gutter, but they won’t need to take it all the way down. This saves labor costs and time. Then the technician will measure and calculate the pitch needed and reinstall the gutters, adjusting fasteners if necessary, to fit the specific measurements.

Gutter Installation in Cuyahoga Falls

If your gutters are permanently damaged, or if they are rusting or wearing down with age, CF 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 come compete with new fasteners, hardware and downspouts. The installer will set the gutters at the proper pitch. You can use our tips in this blog post to ensure the new installation is done the right way.