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Blue River Gutters

How to Install Gutter Brackets Correctly

What are Gutter Brackets

With 5 inch, 6 inch, and 7 inch  gutters, you must have brackets to hold them up. For installation, gutter brackets are used to mount to the fascia board or overhang eaves or eaves of a house.

In the early days, gutter brackets weren’t used. People used straps that went all the way around the gutters and mounted back to the fascia board. The spike and ferrell was then invented second. This technology supported the inside of the gutter to a certain width and the spike would go through the face of the gutter through the ferrel and into the fascia board to hold together. 

Gutter Brackets Come in Multiple Shapes and Sizes

Today, brackets come in all sorts of shapes and sizes for aesthetics.The different sizes are for different types of support. Sometimes you have an angled fascia board that a gutter needs to lock into. A bracket and a strap can go up to the roof and fasten under a shingle, supporting the bottom edge of the gutter.

The hidden hanger is also a type of gutter bracket.  From a vertical position, you hook the hidden hanger into the face of a gutter system. This allows you to put a single screw through the back to mount the gutter to the fascia board

Gutter Brackets

How Many Gutter Brackets Do I Need?

Typically this is determined by standard spacing for gutter brackets. Some installations are non-standard so things might be a little different. What you could see is an open rafter construction where the rafters are two foot on center or the rafters are 16 inches on center. In this situation you would see gutter brackets installed either on every rafter or on every other rafter.

Gutter Brackets Usually 30 Inches Apart

In a two foot rafter situation, if you were to do every other rafter it would be a little bit too far apart. If you’re using a heavy duty gutter material you might be able to pull off a four foot gap.. As a general rule, gutter brackets should be no more than 30 inches apart although there may be exceptions such as really high quality steel or aluminum. You can also make them wider if the brackets are more heavy duty.

To determine how many gutter brackets you need simply take the linear feet of gutter that you’re installing and divide it by 2.5. This calculation would give you the correct count for brackets. Additionally, you would want to add one extra hangar per section after you do your division. If you have 10 sections, you want to add an extra bracket per section.

Can I Use Hidden Gutter Brackets?

You can and hidden brackets are newer and have a variety of choices. In style, some hidden hangers are angled down into the fascia board which provides more secure support. Some are thinner and thicker in their material makeup. Ultimately, the hidden hanger is the way to go.

The only downside to the hidden gutter bracket is that the one with the angled screw is a preset screw. The preset screw is raised above the top lip of the front of the gutter by about ⅜ of an inch. Flat top gutter guards are preferable and these brackets will inhibit the leaf guard from sitting flat inside the top pocket of the gutter.

If you’re intent on putting a leaf guard such as Leaf Relief, Gutter RX, or Leaf Dog, these products are flat and sit inside the top pocket of the gutter. If the bracket is holding up a screw every 30 inches, you can see how it would keep the gutter guard from sitting flat inside and causing it to not work properly. In this case, those brackets would have to be changed out.

Gutter Brackets

What Types of Screws Should I Use With Gutter Brackets?

Types of screws is extremely important and is one of the top failures that we see in a gutter system. Everything will look fine and dandy and the gutters will just fall off of a house, or certain sections will fall off.

Use Hex Head Screws for Gutter Brackets

The number one screw to use is a hex head number eight, stainless screw. At 1 ½ inches, they usually have a piercing point, and it’s used with the hidden gutter bracket. You can also use these for the half round hangers in brackets for half round gutters. Their ability to stand up to weather deterioration is superior. The second screw would be the same size and dimensions as previously mentioned, but zinc plated.

Don't Use Sheetrock Screws or Nails

The number one failure is people using sheetrock screws, a straight steel interior grade screw, or a nail. People will nail them up or screw them up and you’ll see them rust out and break off, and then the gutter just falls off and releases itself from the fascia board. Nothing is wrong with the gutter, but the fasteners that were used break down relatively quickly.

Any type of exterior grade screw is suitable as long as the diameter and the lengths are suitable. The main thing you need to make sure of when picking something out of your junk drawer is you  need to make sure that it is an exterior grade, at least a number eight, and a minimum of one and a quarter inches long.

Gutter Brackets

What is The Best Way to Install a Gutter Bracket?

Follow the instructions for the gutter bracket that you’re using. A variety of brackets are very broad, from strapping all the way around the gutter to using hidden brackets inside the gutter.

Make Sure Hidden Hangers are Connected Properly

Sometimes people just set the hidden hangar into the face of the gutter and into the back of the gutter. It’s very important that this isn’t done because the front lip of the gutter isn’t actually connected to the back of the gutter. You have to raise the hanger toward you vertically and let the hidden hanger hook into the actual pocket in the front of the sheet metal. When its roll formed, it creates a lip. The hidden hangers are designed to hook into the lip on the front of the gutter. You have to make sure it’s hooked and then fold it down and lay it toward the back of the gutter horizontally and then screw it through the back of the gutter.

If the hidden hanger isn’t clipped into the front lip of the gutter, and there is a heavy rain, the front of the gutter will fold down and the water will just run out the front. You’ll actually see the gutter look like it’s still mounted to the wall, but the face of the gutter will be bent down.

Ice Can Bend Gutter Brackets

Sometimes the gutter brackets are  installed correctly, but in an ice storm or heavy snow, the front lip of the gutter will fold down and give you the same look. Even though it was installed correctly, the weight of the ice can bend the brackets and give the same looks. It’s not always the fault of installation, but it is usually. Extreme weather can cause that to happen, but you do want to make sure that the bracket is latched into.the front lip of the gutter during installation.

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Conclusion

In order to install gutter brackets correctly you need to do your homework on the thickness of the gutter that you have.Make sure that you have a bracket that is suitable for the gutter material that you’re installing and make sure you’re using a large enough and an exterior grade screw to install those brackets. Doing these things should give you a great, excellent installation for your new gutter system.

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