gutter sealant to the top side of the seamer piece. Then, wrap the seamer around the butted gutter components from below. The front of the seamer hooks to the front edge of the gutter. The rear of the seamer extends above the rear of the gutter, and you fold this extended flap of metal over the rear edge of the gutter. Use pliers to crimp both the front and rear lip of the seamer tightly onto the gutter. Then, cover the visible seam inside the gutter with a gen- erous bead of sealant. Similarly, a gutter’s end cap will be shaped and sized to match the gutter. Install it by caulking the edges with gutter sealant and pushing the end of the gutter into the seams of the end cap. Before installing a gutter section, give the sealant a few hours to dry and gain some rigidity at the joints. CUTTING TO SIZE When assembling the gutter and downspouts, you will likely have to cut some of the materials to length. One basic method is to clamp the material firmly to a cou- ple of saw horses and cut using a hacksaw. A good pair of metal
snips can also do the job, but it can be tough to keep the cuts clean and straight. Another option is to use a 12- in. miter saw with a fine-toothed blade turned backwards. The speed of the blade combined with the backwards teeth make a nice, clean cut with very little operator effort. Note: When cutting gutter material on the miter saw, turn the section upside down so the cut enters the more stable under- side of the gutter rather than the top edges. And after cutting, return the blade to its original ori- entation so nobody uses it back- ward when not intended.
FASTENERS To hang the gutter, you can choose from a variety of fastener types, but EHT recommends using hidden bracket fasteners that are held to the fascia with gutter screws. The nail-type fasteners, called gutter spikes, can work loose over time because they split the woodgrain, and the wood swells and shrinks over time. With gutter screws, the threads provide a stronger hold to the fascia, and the rigid bracket that comes with the screws prevent overdriving them and crushing the gutter.
Sectional gutters made of aluminum or vinyl can be installed by DIY’ers as a component systems.
Gutter sections and downspout pieces are joined with 3-in. seamer pieces that are glued in place with gutter sealant. After they’ve been wrapped over the joint, the seamers hook over the front and back edges of the gutter, where they get crimped into place with pliers. End caps get caulked with sealant and attached to the gutter end with a push-fit connection.