Gutter Sizing: Why You Should Call Pros
Gutter installation is a popular DIY activity, but that doesn’t mean doing it on your own is advisable. Roofers and gutter installers don’t usually recommend doing this without a professional’s help because there are many factors a gutter installer should take into consideration. There are too many things that might go wrong.
That being said, it’s a good idea to brush up on your home improvement and maintenance basics. You can start with this guide to the factors that affect gutter sizing.
There are two major factors that should be accounted for when you’re installing new gutters:
A moderately pitched roof will normally catch only the rain that falls directly from above it, but if your roof has a high pitch, it also collects more wind-driven rain. More rain collected by your roof means more water for your gutter system to handle. This is an important factor that good roofing contractors never fail to acknowledge.
To measure your roof’s pitch, a 2-foot level and a tape measure are the basic tools you need. Place the level on the roof, then use the tape measure to note the distance between the roof and midpoint of the level’s underside. If you get, say, a 5-inch gap, that means your roof has a 5-in-12 pitch, 12 being the measurement in inches of the run. This gives you the roof-pitch factor.
Maximum Rainfall Intensity
This is the maximum amount of rain in a 5-minute period, measured in inches per hour. Measure the size of the gutter you need depending on how much rain normally falls over your area.
Measuring gutters to account for maximum rainfall intensity and roof-pitch factor is not as complex as it sounds, but it takes time to master it. This is why it’s more advisable to call a professional to install your gutters than to try and do this on your own.
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