Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by silver03, Mar 24, 2021.
Any recommendations on product and installation? I do not want this DIY...
New installation or replacement? Get the larger diameter downspouts (less likely to clog). I'm unsure of the leaf blocker guards (Gutter Helmet, etc) as they seem way overpriced for what they are. I do not have them, but I am still able to clean my gutters without too much inconvenience. I suspect they will get all effed up when you have to reroof as I doubt the roofers do anything to protect them from scratches. Ask about the sealant they use inside for the seams (at the end caps and downspout piece...mine started leaking in a couple places 25 years later as that sh!t dries out). Get details as to where the downspouts will go and how they will attach to the house as I have seem some real convoluted hack jobs when it comes to this. You also don't want them in a place where you will be tripping over the extension. Route the water as far away from the foundation as possible. Ask about how they pitch the gutter to the downspout as too much pitch can look stupid. My neighbor's house was done last summer and I was home watching as they installed them. They had to place some wood on the fascia to facilitate mounting the gutters because of how the builder had originally designed the fascia profile. The wood they threw up there (I presume cedar) went unpainted which is totally bush league in my opinion. Ask a lot of questions, and be home for the install if you can - trust no one. Good luck, and remember, you get what you pay for.
My house came with some type of gutter guard (a grate covering the whole gutter) and it works very well against the ash and maple tree in my yard. I'm thankful I have them for sure. I have a contractor that my parent's use as well as a neighbor who is a contractor in his spare time (residential construction as full time job). I can get their information for you if you would like to reach out for a quote.
New installation. "Trust no-one"-priceless! I live in Andover.
I will ask. My parents live in NE metro and I live East. Not sure on the range of work limits.
I have a subscription to Consumers' Checkbook. I am not sure if you will see anything with this link, but I'm gonna put it here anyway.
Only two companies listed had more than 4 reviews. Gutter Helmet of Minnesota (14 out of 16 reviewers recommended) and Tonka Seamless Gutters (14 out of 14 recommended). If I remember correctly, it was Tonka that did my neighbor's.
This is the lead-in to the ratings. I don't know if this copy and paste violates any sort of copyright and if a mod deletes it, I understand.
by Jennifer Barger
Last updated January 2019
Think of gutters as rain gear for your house. If they’re installed, and regularly cleaned and maintained, gutters prevent water from dripping onto and damaging exterior walls, backing up underneath roof shingles, and carrying rain away from the perimeter of the structure, preventing moisture issues inside.
Repair or Replace?
Before replacing your gutters, determine whether they can be repaired. Gutters made of galvanized steel or aluminum can last for 20 years; more expensive copper ones can hang on for 50 years or more.
To determine if yours need replacement, look for a few telltale signs:
Gutters that are separated from each other or the roof.
Nails or screws falling out (a bit of attrition is OK, but multiple losses could indicate the gutters are worn out).
Multiple cracks, holes, and rust spots.
Multiple broken fasteners (replacing a few fasteners is no big deal, but multiple fasteners out of commission could be a sign of failing gutters).
Sagging or improperly angled gutters, which are prone to either pooling water on your roof or dumping it onto the side of your house.
Peeling exterior paint or stains, which could indicate water seeping into your siding or house trim.
Gutters (and their BFFs, the downspouts that carry all the water away) can be made from a range of materials, from plastic to carved stone. Here are some of the most common materials and their plusses and minuses:
Vinyl: easy to install, inexpensive, and quiet—but the least durable option; vinyl gutters might last less than 10 years.
Aluminum: rust and rot-resistant, comes in many colors, and long-lasting. Less expensive than gutters made with other metal options and more durable than vinyl, but can still dent, split, or tear.
Stainless steel and zinc: more durable than aluminum, but more expensive. Gutters made with either metal on their own or blended together are strong, rustproof, and last 20 to 50 years.
Copper: won’t rust or need repainting and can last for 100 years but very expensive. Once installed, copper hue will oxidize to a matte brown in a few months and after a few years to a dreamy verdigris blue-green.
Gutters work in tandem with mounting gear attached to fascia and downspouts that take the water away. To keep naturally occurring debris out of gutters, a range of gutter guards (mesh screens) and covers are available. They will make cleanings less frequent, but a drawback is lots of professional cleaning outfits won’t work on gutters with guards or covers.
Gutters themselves come in two basic forms: seamless and sectional. Seamless gutters are fabricated on-site by your installer into one long strip. They cost more than sectional ones, which must be pieced together. But seamless styles generally last longer and are more reliable albeit more difficult to install.
Gutters can be shaped as semicircular troughs, half round, or K-style. K-style gutters, the most popular type, have flat bottoms and an outside face that tilts out to bring water away from the house toward downspouts. The shape you choose depends on the architecture of your house and your personal aesthetic; it’s worth seeking advice at the hardware store if you’re installing them yourself. A good installer can suggest which shape would work best for your property.
Finding a Pro
If you decide to hire a pro to install your new gutters, our ratings of area businesses will get you started.
Most of the comments we’ve received about gutter installers have been positive:
“My gutters were totally replaced. A very professional job. My wife didn’t want me cleaning gutters anymore from a ladder, so this design should keep them from clogging.”
“We got great advice on gutters. We have heavy foliage in the fall due to our house backing up to woods. We chose extra-large gutters with downspouts. They did not try to oversell us with systems that don't work. We are very happy with outcome and they look/work great on our home. This company uses their own employees to install and don't sub out.”
“Excellent work and advice. The price was higher than others, but the quality of work results in excellent value.”
But there are also some stinkers:
“They charged my credit card before the job was completed, and they never finished the job.”
“New gutters leaked worse than the old gutters and the screen guards are no good at all: Water runs off in heavy rain.”
As you would when hiring any kind of professional, make appointments with three to five companies with high ratings from Checkbook to inspect your gutters and provide estimates.
Ask companies for proof that they carry general liability and workers’ compensation insurance.
Once you’ve chosen the best candidate, get a written contract for the work that includes a description of the job, type of materials to be used, any warranty, and payment schedule. Arrange to pay as little as possible until the work is finished and you are satisfied with it.
Paying for everything or almost everything at the end gives you max leverage in making sure the work is done properly.
I saved my pennies for the best product on the market, LeafGaurd gutters. No, this is not a paid advertisement. I did my research. I live in a very leafy area with large trees and many many many leaves. I just had them done last fall. I love my gutters!
Are they seamless? Not that it matters I guess but I think my ocd would like looking at it.
We live in Oak Grove and our place is definitely true to the name. The amount of leaf clean up is overwhelming at times. That and our house (and my shop) need gutters badly.
Maybe if you and Rick team up and use the same company you could receive a discount for referral? Like a “gutter group buy”!?
Yes, each run is a one piece seamless gutter with larger downspouts. I'd be happy to have you over to take a look. I live in Mounds View, not far from the Mermaid restaurant. Feel free to PM me if you want to come take a peek.
P.S. This invite is open to anyone else that wants to see the LeafGaurd gutter system.
If you have a lot of pines around your house, the gutter helmet will still let needles in, and eventually you'll have to get in there to clean it out. Something to keep in mind.
This is what I use to clean my gutters and it works surprisingly well.
...and you clearly don't have a tree-heavy lot.
We have two "mature" trees left out of the original eight that were planted 35 years ago. There are four new trees that were planted 5 years ago to replace those removed. The shadow you see in the picture is from a remaining 35 year old ash that is about 25 feet from the house. I still get a fair amount of dirt, shingle granules, and leaves in the gutters. I only have to clean them once a year though. But you are correct, it is not a tree heavy lot.
Who knew gutters would be such a popular topic.
Alright! Now let's switch to talking about patios! Slab, pavers, wood? Diy or hire out?
What's everyone's secret for healthy grass?!
Wood has no place on the outside of a house unless you like spending time on maintenance.
Hire a lawn service. And install irrigation.
I DIY'd my patio with pavers last year. The most difficult part of the job was physically moving the class 2 base aggregate from the driveway where the dump truck left it to the backyard. Pavers are a nice option as they are easy, but slab would be the way I would go to help maintain a move level slope.
and all along we have been (wrongly?) told to keep our mind out of them...
Had irrigation system when we moved in but never used it. Dug up half of it building my garage. I probably should just hire a service because I have proved to myself 3 years in a row that I can't keep up with the leaves. We have a giant 100 year old silver maple in our back yard.
I wish... Our grass is terrible almost everywhere.
Front yard is pretty exposed and typically gets dried out and burned during the hot part of summer. Looks pretty good from a distance (side view) but when you're sitting on the mower looking down at it you can tell the grass itself is pretty thin and there's a lot of broadleaf crap. And crabgrass by the street.
Backyard is mostly heavily shaded and there's a few spots you can tell don't quite get dried out enough or even get enough sunlight to grow proper grass. Lotta spotty patches, bare dirt, some mossy crap here and there.
It's a wide variety of things here that make up our yard. Kinda crazy to see so many different "looks" in one yard.
Couldn't take looking at the endless amount of leaves already piling up around here the last week so I broke down and got the mower out of hibernation yesterday. This is a shot from about the middle of the front yard looking back. The house is basically surrounded by huge oaks, which is pretty awesome for shading and privacy, but man it gets old bagging over and over.
And since we're still talking about gutters... My shop doesn't have any. I replaced the service door because the bottom was all rotted out when we moved here because the rain drops about 6" from the wall and then splashes water/sand onto the door/wall. For a temporary solution I put a bunch of rectangle pavers along the edge to at least keep it from getting muddy, but the door still gets wet and unlike the tin it doesn't really like it.
I've been wanting to make some sort of awning for over the door to hopefully push some of the dripping away from right at the door. A friend of mine made one out of an old, late 40's style Ford truck hood. Looks pretty cool and even had room to put a light up in there. My goal was to use a late 60's Dodge truck hood a) because that's what we have, and b) because they're massive. I've got a window right above the door and the Dodge hood would easily cover it completely width wise and also stick out from the building like 4' or so. But finding one for cheap enough to modify into an awning isn't easy apparently. So I resorted to something I had sitting around, that basically cost me nothing other than a few hours time.
The light in the second one is from a magnetic flashlight I have that I just stuck in there for a test. If anybody has any suggestions as to what I could use for light(s) in this thing to achieve a similar result I'm all ears. I took the wiring harness out of the hatch that was for the wiper motor and window defroster. There's a pretty nice spot to route wires up to the building so I could easily get power out there, I just need to find something that would be relatively easy to "hide" in the structure of the hatch. Free high 5 as a finders fee! Haha.
That looks awesome! And the hatch door allows light through for the window which is way better than a hood blocking all of the natural light. Well done sir, well done!
They make flat led “can lights” that you could drill a hole and mount pretty easily. They also have 5 Kelvin settings that allow you to get the output of light the way that you want it. Are the door card plastics still on it?
That awning is sick I was just thinking how I want an awning for the back of my garage.
Funny that was your first thought, as that was mine as well. Was looking for hoods on Craigslist and Marketplace and the wife suggested I use the one from the old GL we got for free. I didn't think of that... So I went out and looked at it. It's small, kinda boring, nothing special. Then I looked at the hatch. I thought about how much light would be blocked by a hood and was definitely pumped on the idea of having that big piece of glass up there. Plus it still has all the og badges on it for style points.
It doesn't currently have the interior plastic on it, but I did take it off to get the wiring out of it. So I do have it, would just be a matter of putting it back on.
Interesting about the lights. Have a specific example you could show me? In the meantime I'll start browsing.
This sounds exactly like my yard!
Growing good grass will be a problem under so much shade from the big trees. And leaving too much dead leaf material on the grass all winter will not help matters as it smothers what grass is trying to grow there. Your best bet might be to use a vertical rake (or dethatcher) and then overseed with a species that is shade tolerant. Seeding requires a lot of work keeping the area moist so the seed germinates, so I would do smaller areas rather than the whole yard at one time. A place like Gerten's in Inver Grove Heights has a huge number of specialty grass seed mixes for all sorts of growing conditions.
Something like this?
I'm ridiculously ocd about leaving leaves on the ground before winter. I actually wired up headlights on the mower so I could work after dark this last fall in order to get them done as many times as possible before the snow came.
I've also looked at buying a dethatcher for a couple years. I've found one company that makes a semi-universal front mount one that would fit on our mower. Just have never pulled the trigger because it's about $500. If I knew for sure that it'd make a positive impact I'd just get it and go. Slightly worried that it would end up just ripping some of the not so strong/established "grass" smooth out of the ground. Haha.
That could probably work but I was envisioning something much smaller. Even if I ended up having to use multiple of the same smaller size to get the light output I was thinking.
I'm picturing something like an inch or so in diameter. I'd probably drill a small hole and flush mount (slide into place). Ideally one in the middle, as the light pattern in the picture above is perfect for how I'm hoping it looks, otherwise I'd do probably 3 of them evenly spaced.
Not necessarily looking for crazy light output, moreso just to have an accent and be able to see the door when it's pitch black out.
By dethatcher, I'm talking about something like this:
Not something that just has spring loaded tines that are forced along and "rake" out the thatch. This has a bunch of vertical "blades" that spin around and basically cut grooves into the dirt for seed to fall into.
this one is about the size of an OEM Subaru boost gauge.
Yeah, I think 3" is the smallest you'll find in a direct-wire turn-key option, but if you go with a transformer inside the shop and a low voltage DIY, then your options are pretty wide open.
Ah, a slit/slice seeder. I've used one of those a few times before at my last job. Probably wouldn't hurt to give that a whirl on the bare spots.
Heck yeah! Those are both awesome.
Sixty lumens isn't a lot of light. A 40 watt incandescent bulb is 450 lumens.
He said that he didn’t need much light.