Tuesday, August 7, 2012

New Back Gutters


With the old gutters removed, and the rotted casing replaced, and several weeks procrastination, it was finally time to install the new gutters above the back deck. This was a fairly simple installation, being a relatively short run (16'), with no corners. The only issue was fitting the ladder next to the stairs. Oh, and the random cloudbursts that peppered this project with prodigious precipitation.


I started by measuring 3/4" from the bottom of the shingle overhang (as recommended by the gutter system I chose), at the point where the downspout will go, then measured an additional 1/8" for an ever-so-slight slope to encourage drainage. I stapled my chalk line at this point.


If you don't have a chalk line, this is what they look like. It is a long piece of string, wound into a container containing colored chalk dust. The genius of this device is revealed the first time you use one, then you will go hunting for any way to use it in all of your projects.


At the other end of where the gutter's going, I measured down 3/4", pulled the chalk line taught, and stapled to this end.


I then pulled the string away from the wood, perpendicular to the plane of the wood (straight out to the side); you can see the sun glistening through the line, along with the faintest line on the wood from where the string was resting.


Then I let the string snap back against the wood, which left a solid and straight blue line across 16 feet of wood. I pulled the string away again so you can see the chalk line left behind. I removed the staples from both ends, and was ready to get installing!


As per manufacturer's instructions (Raingo gutter systems, a glueless gutter available at Lowe's), I started by installing the downspout piece with a single corrosion-resistant screw, aligned with my beautiful blue chalk line.


I installed gutter clips every 2' for one full gutter length (10'), then snapped the first gutter piece into the clips and the downspout. I then connected an expansion joint (seen below) to the end of the gutter piece, screwed it into the wood, then installed more gutter clips until the end.


I cut a piece of gutter using my miter box to finish the run, added an endcap, then snapped this piece in place. Then I cut a piece to close off the other end of the run, added another endcap, and snapped into place.


Here's a view toward the start of the gutter run; the expansion joint is that thick piece in the foreground, which allows the gutters to expand and contract with the temperature.


 Here's the view to the other end, with some pine needles just itching to clog the gutter.


The Raingo system (and basically all other gutter systems) include gutter guards custom-fit for that system. Pine needles tend to bunch up on the roof, then wash en masse into the gutter, so these guards with big holes work fine. If I were more concerned about small objects (crumbling leaves, etc) getting through the holes, I would have gotten a screen with finer mesh.


Here's the "After" shot, with downspout recycled from the old gutters.


The materials (2 10' gutter pieces, 6x3' gutter guards, 7 clips, downspout, expansion joint, joint lubricant, mounting screws, and 2 endcaps) came out to ~$80, much cheaper than letting that wood continue to rot.

Joe

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