How to Repair and Clean Gutters - Page 2

  • Step 6 : Refasten a sagging gutter

    Gutters are supported in three major ways so securing one that sags depends on how it's attached to the house. Here's how to support the most typical types you'll find.

    1. Outside hanger - Hangers are mounted to the fascia board behind the gutters. The gutters themselves sit inside the hangers. This mounting bracket has a top strap that may come loose and allow the gutter to sag. Bend the outside hanger bracket to align the gutter and then make sure the top strap is hooked to the back of the hanging bracket to keep the gutter from sagging in front.

    2. Spike and ferrule - Spikes are driven through the gutters and into the fascia board. Ferrules maintain the proper width of the gutter trough and prevent the spikes from pulling against and distorting the gutter. Bent spikes can be straightened, but loose spikes should be replaced. The easiest method is to install a new spike and ferrule next to the old.

    3. Strap hanger - Straps holding the gutters are nailed under the shingles into the roof sheathing. Bend the hanger bracket up or down to straighten the sag.

  • Step 7 : Patch a small hole in a gutter

    To patch a small hole, wipe the area with a rag so it is relatively clean and dry. Then apply a glob of gutter sealant or roofing cement using a caulk gun. Cut off the tip of the tube of patching material and stick a nail in the tip so it doesn't ooze out. Then insert the tube in the gun, remove the nail and apply pressure on the trigger to control the bead of sealant or cement. Cover the hole with patching material and smooth it out with a putty knife.

  • Step 8 : Patch a medium-sized hole

    Use a pair of tin snips to cut a metal patch for medium-sized damaged areas. Make the patch at least three times the size of the damaged area.

    Use a coarse plastic scouring pad to remove dirt around the area to be repaired and wipe the area clean with a rag. Then with a caulk gun apply a wavy line of gutter sealant or roofing cement around the repair area. Embed the metal patch in the sealant, and then use a putty knife to smooth out the sealant that has oozed out from under the patch.

  • Step 9 : Reattach loose downspouts

    Reattach loose downspouts

    To refasten downspout sections together, replace any rusted or missing screws with short 3/16-inch hex head sheet metal screws or aluminum rivets. Drive a new, slightly-oversized screw into an old hole, or drill a new hole and then drive a screw into it. To use a blind rivet, drill a hole equal to the size of the rivet shank, insert the rivet into the tool, poke the rivet into the hole, and squeeze the tool's handles until the rivet stem breaks off. Just remember, the fewer the fasteners, the more inconspicuous the repair, and the less chance there is for leaks.

  • Step 10 : Caulk elbows

    Apply gutter sealant with a caulk gun to any leaks or empty screw or rivet holes in the downspout elbows.

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