Should You DIY Aluminum Gutters?

Faced with having to purchase aluminum gutters, if you’re comfortable with tackling home improvement projects on your own, and especially in today’s economy, it might make sense for you to DIY. However, saving money is only one of several factors you should consider before committing to installing a gutter system by yourself.

Seamless Aluminum Gutters: If you love the sharp appearance of seamless aluminum gutters, they are almost impossible to install yourself. Seamless gutters are typically “made to order” on site because many gutter specialists unroll and cut the aluminum gutter to the exact dimension needed. Also, lengths of seamless aluminum gutter are typically longer than one or two people can handle.

Skills Set: You might be confident in your home improvement capabilities, but keep in mind, you’re not installing aluminum gutters on a regular basis. Unforeseen problems, such as roofing issues or proper downspout placement, might cost you more in the end when you have to call in a roof or gutter specialist anyway.

Total Cost: Yes, the basic gutter system – aluminum is one of the most economical materials used in making gutters – will be relatively inexpensive. When a gutter specialist does the installation, all of the “extras” are usually included. But when you DIY, in addition to purchasing pre-cut, aluminum sections, you will also have to buy accessories like hangers, couplings, seamers, nails, screws, one or more downspouts and adhesives. Be sure you know the total cost of your DIY project before you begin.

Pitch or Slope: You might know the formula (¼ inch for every 10 linear feet) for correctly angling your gutters so that the water will flow properly rather than pool. Particularly if your home is an older one, a gutter installation professional will be able to recognize the structure’s pitch angle and how to use it to the best advantage when installing gutters.

Falling: One of the most common household accidents is falling off a ladder. It might not seem like an important factor to consider when deciding on whether you should DIY or hire a gutter installation professional. But using a ladder to stand on while painting a wall or hanging a light fixture might not be the same experience as standing on a ladder while moving lengths of gutter into place.

If you have the time and aptitude for home improvement projects, in an effort to keep the costs down when installing new gutters, to DIY gutters might seem to be the best decision. On the other hand, a gutter installation professional will be able to complete the installation quickly and be able to spot potential problems or deal with the unexpected.