The K-Style gutter is the most common gutter system used by professional home builders, do-it-yourselfer's, and handy homeowners alike. It’s cheap and easy to install. To do the best possible job, however, you need to know a few tips that will make the work go faster and more smoothly. You can do some of the installation on the ground, which will be much easier for you. This will also save time.
Before you buy your K-Style gutter, plan out on paper where you’ll put your downspouts and center drops. This will make it easier when you install the gutters. Bear in mind that the center drops will either be at the end of a length of gutter section or in the middle. Don’t locate them over doors or windows, and make sure no run is more than 40 feet without a downspout.
Working On the Ground
Do as much as you can on the ground, rather than up a ladder. There’s plenty you can assemble beforehand, such as putting end caps on the gutter, putting together downspouts and center drops, making sure the end caps are firm on the gutter and cutting the miters if you need them for corners.
Remember that you’ll need a slight drop from the end of the K-Style gutter to the downspout. To make sure you have this, use a chalk line on the house wall to make the top edge of the gutter trough. The slope should be 1 inch in 40 feet.
If you’re using spikes and ferrules to attach the gutter, you’ll need to know where your roof studs are. The spikes should be hammered in either every 24 inches or every 32 inches, depending on the stud spacing. Don’t hammer the spikes all the way home. Leave 1 inch out until you check that the drop on the gutter slope is fine.
With the hidden hanger installation method for K-Style gutter, the hangers should be spaced 24 inches apart and screwed to the fascia board using 1½ inch screws. If you use eavestrough flashing with hidden hangers, then there will be no gap between gutter and fascia, giving a better look to the house. Don’t screw the hangers all the way home until you’ve tested the drop on the gutter slope.
You can use brackets while installing K-Style gutters. Following the chalk line, screw them in place spaced 24 inches apart. The gutter fits into the brackets, which snap in place over the trough.
When you’re putting a downspout against the house, you need to nail a strap in place for every 10 feet of height to keep it secure. You’ll need to use elbow pipes to join the K-Style gutter to the downspout. For most houses, two “A” style elbows, placed opposite each other will work. If you need a little more distance, cut a length of a downspout and secure it between the two elbows. To disperse water at the base of the downspout, you should use a “B” elbow.