In this guide My Gutter Doctor walks you through our Gutter Replacement process. Whether you are a local Maryland resident seeking quotes for Gutter Replacement, or a homeowner looking for DIY tips to install your own gutters, everything you need to know is contained within.. (If you are not actively seeking quotes for gutter replacement then you can skip to Step 3.)
This article is designed to be an informative helpful guide for people curious of the Gutter Replacement process, seeking answers to FAQ’s, or seeking DIY tips. For more specific information on what products we carry, our warranties/guarantees, etc.. CLICK HERE to visit our Gutter Installation page.
CLICK HERE to skip to our Free Estimate page.
Once you have determined that it is time to replace your gutter system you are ready for the first step, seeking out estimates. Since it is recommended to receive at least two-three quotes for most major home repairs, you may want to contact multiple companies. Our recommendation is to search out local gutter service providers through Google since it is free
Fortunately quotes for Gutter Replacement, or any other gutter service, are easily obtainable. Free Estimate Forms or Contact Forms are found on the websites of most gutter service providers. Homeowners are able to fill out the forms at their own convenience and submit once completed.
With My Gutter Doctor you can expect a response to your form submission within one business day. Typically a couple hours at most. For most homes we are able to use google maps to get the approximate measurements and provide a quote. However if the home is not viewable from online images then we may need to stop by the home for measurements. If that is the case you will receive a confirmation for a Free Estimate visit to measure the existing gutter system.
My Gutter Doctor sends quotes via email and/or text for the customer to look over and approve or deny. To make things easier our estimates include an easy to use button to click to approve, and another button to deny. Once the estimate is approved by the customer we are able to move onto the next phase which is scheduling.
For Gutter Replacements and other larger projects we are typically about 1-2 outs. Especially if the gutters are an alternate color than white. If you have any scheduling preferences please let us know so that we can work with you to find the best date for the service. Otherwise your Gutter Replacement will be scheduled for the next available installation date.
The first true step of Gutter Replacement is to remove the existing gutter system. Ideally the goal is to remove each run of gutter without having to cut them apart or damage them much. That way you are able to measure the gutters later on.
How easy the gutter removal is depends on what type of fastener was used to mount the gutters to the wall. Gutter spikes, which are basically large nails, will require more effort to remove than screw in styles of brackets such as hidden hangers. Hammer and a pry bar are needed to remove gutter spikes, as they have to be hammered back out of their hole. Whereas screw in styles of brackets only require a drill with a 1/4″ driver tip.
We typically will start loosening the gutter brackets/spikes in the middle of the gutter run but leave the ends secured. This ensures that the gutter will not fall off of the wall until you are ready. Leaving the downspouts on the wall until last can also help hold the gutter up until you are ready to remove them from the home. Especially if you do not have a second set of hands and it’s just you.
The prep stage basically is getting the wall ready for the new gutter so the installation is easy and smooth. The idea is so that there are no hang ups once you start climbing the ladder. The prep step can technically be switched with the next step (measure and fabricate gutters). As long as the eaves are prepped before you take the gutter up the ladder. In addition if you have a helper one person can work on prep while the other fabricates the gutters. Once you’ve performed several gutter replacement services you learn use these prep steps as you remove the gutters. Therefore you don’t have to go back around the home a second time with the ladders.
This is a step often skipped which comes back to bite you later on down the road. Anytime the gutters are removed the fascia boards should be wiped down and any loose nails need to be removed. Unfortunately lot’s of debris wedges behind the gutters which in turn sticks to , or embeds itself, into the fascia boards. Everything from pine needles to acorns or leaves will stick to the fascia boards. If the debris is not wiped down it will stick out like a sore thumb once the installation process is over. A good habit to get into is cleaning the fascia boards as you are completing the tear down.
The drip edge is a type of flashing that tucks under the shingles and protects the roofing eave from water damage. It blocks water from going behind the gutter by sticking outwards slightly from the roof. In the photo below is a perfect example of how drip edge tucks under the shingles and then the gutter almost tucks under the drip edge.
Often times the drip edge is bent inwards towards the fascia boards due to improper installation. We always bend the drip edge back outwards and suggest that should be the standard. Otherwise the water is able to go behind the gutter and damage the wood.
Soon after the gutters are pulled down from the wall you will want to gather the measurements. And there are three ways to go about getting these measurements. You can either measure the existing gutters that were removed, measure the fascia boards where the gutters will be mounted, or measure the shingles from edge to edge. Using the fascia board or shingle measurements will require adding inches to your totals to come up with the proper overhang. We recommend and try to aim for the gutter to go 1-2 inches past the shingle edge on each side. This ensure the gutter is wide enough to catch all the water.
Once all the measurements are ready to go the next step is to run out the gutter. We bring our own gutter machine on site to customers homes for the installation. That way we are able to run out a gutter that is close to exact length as possible.
In addition to cutting the gutters to exact length, the fabrication stage also includes adding all accessories to the gutters. End caps need to be tapped into place and then crimped using a special crimping tool. Once crimped the end cap needs to be sealed with a waterproof sealant along the inner seam as shown in the photo below.
Gutter outlets are the drain hole cut into gutters so the water is able to drain through the downspout. Installing outlets is a little more tricky as a hole saw is needed to cut a hole the size of the outlet that you have. Once the hole is drilled out the outlet is easily installed and then secured using screws. Lastly a seal is also applied to outlets to keep water from leaking around the downspouts. It is important to note that the outlet position is determined by the location of the downspout. Wherever the downspout needs to go is where the gutter outlet will need to be installed. Therefore your outlet measurements need to come from the downspout locations.
Lastly the hangers should be pre-installed to the gutter sections. We recommend one hidden hanger every 2 feet for gutter replacement. The hangers on the ends should be about 6 inches from the ends of the gutters.
If everything is prepped including the fascia boards, drip edge, and new gutter then it is time to install the gutter to the home. For longer gutter runs two people and two ladders may be needed. Our technicians are able to install 35 to 45 foot sections by themselves depending on how tall the home is. However homeowners probably shouldn’t attempt much more than a 10 or 12 ft. piece of gutter on their own, because gutters can bend easily. One of the big Pro’s of screw in style hangers is that they are easy to install. You simply use the drill to drive the hanger screw into the fascia board.
All gutters are to be pitched or sloped so that the water drains to the downspouts freely. Therefore the gutters need to be set at the proper slope before screwing in the screws. The proper way to do this is to lightly set the middle of the gutter with one not-so-tight screw, then set the high end of the gutter as high as it goes. Next the opposite end of the gutter is set as low as it can go then secured. Lastly the middle screw is loosened so the middle of the gutter can adjust to the new pitch, then re-secured once set to the correct position. Then the other hangers are also screwed in accordingly.
One of the last steps to gutter replacement is to seal the gutter corners, aka miters, using waterproof sealant. If you were following the steps along in the correct order then the end caps and outlets should already be sealed. Since it is easier to apply seals on the ground than in the air, we take care of the end caps and outlets when fabricating the gutters. However, installing the miters and then sealing them is one of the last steps of the gutter installation process. That is because the gutters need to be configured and pitched properly before sealing up the corners.
As long as the outlet was cut and installed in the correct position, installing the new downspouts will be easy. Downspouts are installed using aluminum straps or brackets that mount to the homes exterior wall. To get the downspout perfectly straight up and down, we suggest using a level. Once all the downspouts are installed and properly secured that brings us to the last stage.
The final stage of the gutter replacement process is inspecting the work and cleaning up all scrap from around the home/in the yard. We typically will take a couple laps around the home inspecting the gutters ensure all of the brackets were screwed in correctly, and that the gutters seem to be pitched towards the downspouts.
With My Gutter Doctor you can expect a thorough clean up of the yard and any areas the technicians were working in upon completion of the service. We take pride in making sure
This isn’t technically a step but we included it so that our customers know when to expect us to reach out for payment. Payment is due after the completion of all services with My Gutter Doctor. We send the invoice to your email soon after the service is completed. There will be a link to pay by card attached to the invoice and also the address is posted for mailing checks.
There are a couple instances that indicate it is about time for Gutter Replacement to the home. Gutters are generally able to be re-used until they either become misshapen, form holes, rust, become discolored, or when they have persistent leak problems. Once a gutter bends or creases there is no turning back. The water will pour from the bend like a spout anytime it rains. Holes can sometimes be sealed but eventually they will leak again and need to be resealed. Lastly once the gutters become too old the sealants no long adhere to the gutters properly, which makes it impossible to seal.
We only use and suggest seamless gutters for all gutter replacement or installation projects. Seamless gutters are gutters that were fabricated to fit the length of the home. Otherwise multiple sections of gutter will need to be joined together using seams that eventually leak. To demonstrate the photo below shows a gutter that is made up of several separate sections of gutters that were joined together at seams. If you look closely you will notice that the gutter is set at a zig zag pattern instead of a straight line.
As of 2023, the thickest size aluminum that is able to be run through gutter machines and fabricated into gutters is .032 gauge. My Gutter Doctor exclusively uses .032 gauge gutters, downspouts, and accessories. Using the highest quality product available ensures that the gutters will last the longest.
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93 Monocacy Blvd. A-6
Frederick, MD 21701