What does it mean to Install Gutters Properly?

When troubleshooting rain gutters some common problems such as overflowing and standing water can be attributed to an incorrectly installed gutter system. Gutters play an important role in how well a gutter system protects your home. Factors that contribute to a successful gutter installation include the correct slope, number of downspouts, and the number of hangers.

Gutter Material

Each type of gutter material has its own properties and needs to be installed accordingly. A contractor that specializes in seamless aluminum gutters might be less knowledgeable about copper gutter systems. A professional gutter installation technician will also know not to mix metals.


Gutters installed too close to the roofline encourage water to slide in between the back of the gutter and the fascia. Gutters should hang several inches below the edge of the roof to allow water to directly enter the gutter system.

Gutter sections should be level – no leaning forward or backward – to avoid runoff from spilling over the sides.

In the past, it has been an accepted gutter installation practice to let water drain directly onto a lower roof level. However, since it tends to age a roof faster, many contractors now advise installing gutters on every sloped roof edge.

Sloping Downward

Gutters need to slope downward, guiding water toward the downpipes. The slope, also known as pitch, needs to be enough of an angle to keep water flowing through the gutter channel to the gutter outlet (where downspout connects to gutter section).

Number of Downspouts

If the number of downspouts isn’t properly calculated, insufficient downpipes could jeopardize the lifespan of a gutter system. In order to optimally protect a house from water damage, downspouts need to be placed for maximum functionality and end far enough away from the foundation.

Number of Hangers

Gutters need the right number of hangers to hold them in place, fastening them securely to the fascia. If too many gutter hangers are used, it spoils the aesthetics of your home and adds more parts to an aluminum gutter system that are prone to rust. If too few are used, it makes the gutters vulnerable to wind and heavy rainfalls.