Buildings or houses with pitched roof have a variety of drainage systems. If a building structure’s overhang is wide enough, water can drain directly to the ground without the use of gutters. Most building structures today, however, have some type of drainage system incorporated into their design. Believe it or not, rain gutters have been around for thousands of years.

If your house doesn’t have rain gutters, you may want to consider the following facts. Gutters are an important component of every house because they serve to channel water away from it, thereby extending the life of its exterior. Without gutters, water is free t run down the roof, back across and under the eaves, and down the sides of the house eventually causing water damage. Furthermore, the runoff from the roof can seep in around windows over time, potentially causing water damage to the interior of a house.

Rain gutter systems are most commonly made from galvanized steel, aluminum, copper, and even plastic. In addition, gutters are available in a wide variety of colors, so painting them is often not necessary. If you decide to install a gutter system yourself, the materials can be purchased in precut lengths from your local hardware store and then trimmed on site to the exact length needed. Down spouts and hangers are readily available, too. Gutters are fairly inexpensive, and for several hundred dollars, you should be able to install a complete system.

When installing the gutters, you should make sure that they are hung properly. The front edge should be about one-half inch below the back edge, there should not be any low areas that can collect water, and all of the joints should be sealed properly to ensure that the water flows through the gutters and to the down sprouts rather than dripping through the joints. Finally, if the gutters have a cover screen or similar device used to keep them free of debris, be sure to check them periodically to ensure that they do not become clogged with leaves that would result in water flowing over them and thereby rendering the gutters useless.

You can also hire a professional to install a complete rain-gutter system. Even though the initial cost is more than if you did the work yourself, to me it is well worth it. By having a professional install the gutters, you can usually depend on them to be hung properly with everything functioning as designed. Most companies have a supply of material on their truck that is measured and custom fit to the exact specifications of your house.

Gutters are relatively inexpensive to install, serve a very important purpose, and will enhance the appearance of most any home by providing a clean and finished look to the eaves and corners of the house.