One of the most important parts of your home is your gutters. Gutters protect your foundations from water damage and your garden from erosion. They also form a barrier between the elements and the roof. As your gutters are essential to preventing water damage, you need to maintain them on a regular basis. If your gutters start to leak, rust or pull away from the house it is time to look for new gutters.
Many people assume that installing new gutters themselves will save them time and money. However, this is not always the case because proper gutter installation is hard work. It will also take a lot of time which could in the long-run cost more than getting a contractor. There are a number of reasons why DIY installation is a bad idea.
A professional gutter installer can make it look easy, but there are actually a number of factors that have to be taken into account. These are generally technical aspects that professional installers will know about and the average person does not.
Something you might not realize is that gutters come in a range of different sizes. Large gutters will hold more water, but they could pull away from the property easily because they are heavier. Smaller gutters are more secure, but they have the potential of overflowing if there is a lot of rain. A professional will be able to determine the size you need and the size which will fit your property.
A crucial factor to gutter installation is pitching the gutters correctly. There is actually a delicate balance between maintaining curb appeal and pitching your gutters properly. If the pitch is incorrect then you could face overflowing which will compromise your foundations. However, pitches that are not subtle could make your home appear lopsided which negatively impacts your curb appeal.
When installing gutters you have to consider the spacing of gutter hangers because many things could happen if this is done incorrectly. The first is that the system could sag is the hangers are too far apart and this will cause the gutters to pull away from the house. If you use too many gutter hangers you will be wasting materials, time and money.
Sealing the gutter seams is a bit of a science. You need to factor in points such as moisture levels, temperature and the gutter condition in order to seal the seams effectively. Sealing the seams is not actually the best option and could cause problems in the long-run. It is better to get seamless gutters which limit the risks of leaks and separation.
If you are planning to add gutter covers to your project, this may add a whole new skill set that you will have to master in order to do the job right.
There are also some soffit and fascia complications that you need to know about. If you do not clean the system often an improper diversion of water could cause the soffit and fascia to rot. The fascia and soffit may need to be treated for mold or completely replaced when this happens. If you do not take care of these problems they will cause bigger issues in the future and you will not be able to install new gutters until this has been fixed.
During gutter installation, you have to consider your safety. A single tiny slip up when installing gutters could cause potentially fatal consequences. There are many safety concerns that you need to look at.
Each year, thousands of homeowners fall off ladders and many of them are met with serious consequences. A ladder fall can result in broken bones, concussions, joint dislocations and in extreme cases death. Professionals have been trained in ladder safety and will be insured to protect you from any liability if an accident occurs.
There is a lot of equipment needed to install gutters from common tools to more advanced tools. If these tools are not used correctly they can cause serious injuries. During gutter installation, you will need to use tin snips, hacksaws and downspout crimpers which are powerful and sharp. Many of these tools are not ones that you generally use and many seasoned DIY enthusiasts could be putting themselves at risk by using them.
One of the primary reasons why people do not hire professionals for gutter installation is the cost. However, it is important to note that you could end up spending more when you complete the installation yourself. There are a number of reasons why this could be the case.
The installation costs associated with professionals is a big concern for many homeowners, but professionals are often the economical option. The source materials needed for the installation are generally cheaper when bought in bulk. This means that the professional will generally be able to offer a lower price for the materials then your local hardware store.
As every house is different, there are unique quirks that your home has that others will not. When you hire a professional they will be able to take these quirks into account and offer materials that work with your home. If you choose to install the gutters yourself you could purchase the wrong materials or spend more on special orders. Many professionals will already have the correct parts in stock lowering the overall costs.
When you make a mistake in the installation it can be costly. If you accidently drop your system during the installations the gutters could end up bent or bowed. This will increase the costs as you have to purchase replacement materials. If a professional causes damage while installing your gutters they are liable for the additional costs of replacing the materials which means you will never have any unexpected costs.
Completing a DIY gutter installation does give you experience and the bragging rights if everything turns out right. However, the technical aspects, safety hazards and cost of materials need to be taken into account before you start anything. These points could make the DIY installation cost more and take more time than simply hiring a professional.