Are Gutters Really Needed?


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Old 05-31-07, 07:08 AM
J
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Are Gutters Really Needed?

I recently removed the gutters from my house, because the prior owner did not maintain them very well (small plants growing in them, and loaded with leaves and pine needles).

I'm under the impression that if I keep them off, water running off from the roof has a potential to undermine the foundation.

Will planting small bushes under the overhang prevent the erosion? Or is there another step I should take?
 
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Old 05-31-07, 09:04 AM
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You need to run the water away from the house. A couple bushes are not going to do it. I'd replace the gutters.
 
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Old 05-31-07, 11:44 AM
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My answer about the gutters - it depends. It depends on the area you live, the type of foundation, the slope/landscaping of your lot, soil make up, the size of your house (roof area) etc.

If you live in an area that gets any appreciable amount of rainfall then gutters are a good idea. You would be amazed at the amount of water a good sized roof will shed. A significant runoff can contribute to a wet basement and erode the area around the foundation. Look around your neighborhood, if all the houses have gutters, you're probably better off installing them.
 
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Old 06-01-07, 01:26 AM
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To add to the above comment, if gutters are required then when you sell your home it will be necessary to have them installed. You will need guttering in your area (most areas need guttering due to the volume of water from the roof) UNLESS your house is built with 1) 4 to 5 feet overhang, eaves or soffit to allow water sufficent drainage away from the house, 2) slanted fascia to prevent wood rot, 3)foundation footing which goes into bedrock in order to have stable footings, and 4) if you live in an area which does not receive much rain.

This is not an exhaustive list but most general points to consider.

One word of advice, ask a foundation expert. Most gutter companies want your business and will tell you anything to get your work. I am a gutterman in business over 20 years and I have seen alot of money only companies with no regard to the home owners. Just my 2 cents worth.
 
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Old 06-01-07, 12:00 PM
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Thanks for the input everyone.

On my drive home from work, I noticed only 3 out of 15 houses had gutters. We rarely receive rain. We are averaging maybe 4-5" a year. We caught a bit of rain yesterday and I noticed a small amount of standing water, about 5 feet from the foundation in the front yard, the back and sides have pretty good water drainage.
 
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Old 06-02-07, 11:00 AM
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"4-5" a year ..." Arizona? Personally, I wouldn't bother with gutters.
 
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Old 06-02-07, 11:26 AM
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You definitely don't want water hanging around the foundation. Or even running down the house could cause it to collect and drip from some wood and lead to rot.

When I moved into my place I had the same problem, people before didn't do the upkeep and plants where growing in them. But I trimmed the tree branches that did the most damage, and check the trouble spots occasionally and so far so good.

I have some of the ABS drainage hoses emptying into a couple 5 gallon buckets that collects some of the rain water. Great for watering plants.
 
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Old 06-03-07, 03:33 AM
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I can't think of an area that requires gutters. They aren't required in my area of Florida, most homes don't have them, and we certainly get our share of rain (except this year it seems, damn drought!).
 
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Old 06-03-07, 05:28 AM
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Smile gutters?????

Depends, like some others have stated.... Slope of your lot ,amount of rain fall, etc......you just dont want water standing around your foundation. Plus rain comming off of your eaves does a number on your flower bed or any type decorative beds you might have around your house. Gutters prevent that. Be nice not to have them, I think they are ugly and they require some maintance, but sometimes they are necessary. M2C
 
 

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