Unless you’re a tradesperson, you probably won’t know the ins and outs of a full roofline on a typical home. Most of our customers don’t know how their gutters work, and that makes it difficult to diagnose problems.
Here’s a quick guide to gutters and downspouts.
How gutters and downspouts work
The gutter is a channel around the edge of the roof where rainwater is collected as it falls. The downspout is the pipe that channels this water away and down the drain. Gutters are attached to the fascias around the roof.
The gutter and downspout are absolutely critical to maintaining your roof, since excess water can quickly cause rot to set in. If water collects in the gutter due to a blockage – which is usually caused by dead leaves and moss – it will freeze and expand, which causes gutters to crack.
Any overflow in your gutter can cause rot in the timbers, and it can overspill onto the floor and walls below. This can cause issues with the foundations of your home.
If it’s time to have a new gutter fitted to your home, we’ll assess your building and look at your available budget.
The size of the gutter we fit is influenced by the slope, or pitch, of the roof. For a steep, tiled roof, you’ll need a wider gutter than a roof that has a shallow or flat roof, because the rate of runoff will be significantly faster.
Square gutters and downpipes look smart and modern, but there are different shapes available, including U-shaped curved gutters, although shallow gutters will need to be wider to accommodate the same volume of water. We can advise you on the shape that will look best and function most efficiently.
Cost and materials
Normally, we recommend uPVC replacement gutters and downpipes, because they’re inexpensive, durable and easy to maintain.
You can also opt for copper, steel or aluminium gutters, with a few important caveats. First, metal gutters are more expensive, with copper being the biggest investment. While steel gutters look good, and they are inexpensive, they do rust and will need replacing sooner. Many customers choose uPVC for this reason.
We may also need to replace the fascia boards if your gutters are in particularly poor condition, since rotten boards may not hold the weight of the gutter and the water within it.
Whatever you choose, factor in the cost of having your downpipes replaced in the same material. We’ll work out prices for your chosen options, so you can see how much money you’d save.
Talk to the experts
South Thames Roofing is a Surrey based company with many years of roofline experience, from guttering to roofing and chimney stacks. We have fitted gutters and downpipes all over the south east, and we can provide a no-obligation quote for replacements. If you suspect your gutter is leaking, it’s best to get it inspected before the rot sets in – literally. Give us a call and we’ll give you a quote that meets your budget.