An Essential Guide to Guttering
An Essential Guide to Gutter Repairs
When your guttering needs repaired or replaced it’s best to hire a trained professional. That said, if you decide you want to do the work yourself there are a few things to keep in mind.
Plastic gutters are the cheapest and easiest type to fit and are best used if it’s a DIY job. Before buying any guttering, make sure to get accurate measurements of how much you’re going to need. Always space the ladder at a 70° angle and have somebody holding it for as long as you’re up there. Also make sure that you don’t overextend your reach and lose your balance. When doing guttering repairs, always put safety first.
There are different types of gutter depending on whether you have a flat or sloping roof.
Parapet gutters are used when you have a flat roof. A gutter is placed between slightly slanted parapet walls, allowing the water to run into the gutter which then allows the water to run into a downpipe.
Eaves gutters are used when you have a sloping roof. They are available in a variety of styles and colours and tend to be attached to the fascia board. If you have an older property, the guttering may be cast iron, however in most modern properties the guttering is usually plastic.
Before removing the damaged section of gutter, hammer nails into the fascia underneath to prevent it from coming off the wall. Now remove the nails or screws from the affected section of gutter and the gutter should come away from the wall. Removing downpipes is as simple as prying them off the wall with a crowbar. Cast iron guttering is really heavy and you shouldn’t attempt to take it down by yourself.
Fitting New Guttering
First be aware that the gutter should not be completely flat. If it’s not slightly slanted towards the downpipe, the water won’t drain properly and can cause long term damp problems. Before fitting the gutter, guttering clips need to be attached to the fascia and spaced no more than about 80cm apart to provide adequate support to the gutter. The guttering can then be slid into place securely and a stop-end can be attached to each end.
In order to fit a downpipe, mark out a straight line up the wall. Then, using a downpipe clip, mark out the screw holes on the wall spacing them around 1.5m apart. Once that’s done, drill the marked holes and install rawlplugs. Then attach the first piece of the downpipe to the socket in the guttering, leaving around a 1cm gap between the top end of the downpipe and the top of the socket to allow for expansion in sunny weather. Place a downpipe clip over docket and screw it into place and then screw another downpipe clip over the pipe. Continue to do this until you’ve reached the bottom of the wall and then, using a downpipe clip, attach a shoe to the bottom of the pipe in order to direct the water into the drain below.