Unexpected Obstacles When Installing Gutters

Older homes have their secrets and sometimes they choose to reveal them at inconvenient moments. A simple bathroom renovation exposes major plumbing issues or a new chandelier for the dining room isn’t possible until the wiring is up to code. When getting new gutters installed, here are some surprises a DIYer or a professional gutter installer might encounter.

Fascia Rot

From the ground, gutters that need replacing can look okay until an installer tries to remove gutter sections from the roofline. Fascia boards that fall to the ground or pull away from the house are victims of rot. They must be replaced before the gutters can be installed. While soffit panels don’t directly impact a gutter installation, if they are damaged in any way, they might as well be repaired or replaced while the gutters are not attached to the fascia.

Too Heavy

Often older homes have narrow fascia that might not be compatible with new copper gutters or steel gutters. Since most types of gutter systems are attached to the fascia boards, they need to be wide enough and strong enough to support gutters manufactured from heavier materials.

No Flashings

While many gutter installers use flashing as an added level of protection, homes 25 years and older typically did not have gutter flashings unless specifically required. You might be prepared to have gutters installed only to discover that you should probably take the time to put in flashing now rather than deal with leaks later.

Hard to Access Places

The varied rooflines of older houses can be challenging when replacing old gutters with a new gutter system. A particular roof configuration might make standard length gutter sections difficult to install without cutting or custom fitting.

Roof Woes

A professional gutter installer will alert you to roof problems that might need to be fixed before new gutters can be installed. A DIYer can most likely troubleshoot obvious roofing problems such as an uneven roofline or missing shingles along the eaves edge. But if the roof has never been replaced or repaired, it might be more difficult to identify serious leaks that could cause problems after new gutters have been installed.