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How To Fix Sagging Gutters (2024 Guide)

Default Author Icon Written by Mike Miller Updated 03/21/2024

Rain gutters collect water and direct it away from your home’s foundation. Over time, leaves, pine needles, and other debris can fall inside and form clogs. Eventually, the weight of the debris buildup and undrained water may cause your clogged gutters to sag.

One way to fix sagging gutters is to replace them, but it’s not the only option. You may be able to save money on gutter installation costs with a do-it-yourself (DIY) solution or a simple repair. In this article, we walk you through how to fix sagging gutters and how to keep the issue from recurring.


DIY Solutions for Sagging Gutters

You might be able to fix sagging gutters on your own with a simple cleaning or repair job, requiring only a trip to the hardware store. Here are a few DIY solutions you can try:

Clear Debris and Clogs

Most gutters sag because trapped water and debris are weighing them down. Before taking any other steps, clean your gutters thoroughly. You can do this manually with a bucket, gloves, and a ladder, or you can use tools to clean your gutters from the ground, such as a shop vacuum or power washer with special attachments. You may also need a plumber’s snake to clear any clogs in your downspouts.

Adjust the Slope

Once you have removed debris, spray water into your gutters with a hose to see if they drain properly. If you still see standing water, you may have a problem with your gutters’ slope. In general, gutters should slope at least one-quarter inch every 10 feet to keep water moving toward the downspouts. If your gutters are not properly sloped, move or adjust the structural hangers to address the issue.

Reinforce the Support

If the weight of debris and water has damaged your gutter hangers, you may need to tighten or replace them. You’ll need a screwdriver to tighten any existing gutter screws and possibly some new gutter hangers. Consider adding extra gutter brackets or straps to support the section where the sagging occurred. 

Install a Downspout

In some cases, the simplest solution to sagging gutters is installing a new downspout beneath the affected area. If water consistently pools in one spot, adding a downspout or rain chain there may help. Water will drain more quickly, putting less strain on your gutters and their support system.


Professional Solutions for Sagging Gutters

If you don’t have much experience with DIY repairs or home improvement projects, consider hiring a gutter professional or at least a handyman. This is especially true if you aren’t comfortable with ladders, lack the tools required, or have a particularly high roof.

If you are a skilled DIYer, take a moment to assess the severity of the issue and weigh your options. Do you also have gutter leaks or other damage? You can save money by handling gutter repair yourself, but some situations might call for a full gutter replacement. In that case, hire a professional gutter company. This will save you time and give you access to more options, such as seamless gutters that resist clogging and sagging.

You might consider having high-quality gutter guards installed at the same time. This upgrade will help keep debris out of your gutters, which will help prevent sagging and other gutter-related issues. Here are a few companies that offer gutter guards as well as gutter installation and repair services.

LeafFilter

LeafFilter offers a three-piece gutter guard system that installs directly onto your existing gutters. Its system includes a stainless-steel micro-mesh screen supported by a uPVC frame and structural hangers that fasten into your fascia boards. The gutter guards sit at an angle so that surface tension draws water into your gutters while debris slides off.

In addition to gutter guard installation, LeafFilter offers gutter repair and replacement services as needed. Before installing your new gutter guards, the company’s installers will inspect and clean your existing gutters and perform any necessary repairs. Alternatively, they can install brand new gutters. The LeafFilter Gutter Protection system also comes with a lifetime, transferable warranty.

LeafGuard

Rather than adding gutter guards to your existing drainage system, LeafGuard installs new gutters with reverse-curve gutter guards built in. Its effective one-piece design requires minimal maintenance. Due to the product’s nature, LeafGuard does not offer gutter cleaning or repair services. If cost is a concern, the company offers free estimates, financing, and a clog-free guarantee. LeafGuard’s ScratchGuard paint finish also comes with a limited lifetime warranty.

HomeCraft

Like LeafFilter, HomeCraft offers a stainless-steel micro-mesh gutter guard system that installs onto your existing gutters. Its design is different, though: Rather than relying on surface tension and a substructure, its gutter guards have a powder-coated aluminum frame and a raised diamond design. The textured surface keeps debris slightly up and out of the way, creating space for water to continue flowing into your gutters.

Before providing any pricing information, HomeCraft will inspect your gutters and demonstrate its product. The company can also clean and repair your gutters or install brand-new gutters, and offers a lifetime, transferable warranty on its gutter guards.


Sagging Gutters Causes

Several issues can cause your gutters to sag. Below are the most common causes:

  • Trapped debris weighing the gutters down
  • Clogged downspouts that keep the water from draining
  • Heavy snow or ice dams
  • Gutters that are too small or improperly sloped
  • Insufficient support or sloppy installation

Sagging Gutters Symptoms

The most obvious sign of sagging gutters is their appearance. You might notice that one gutter section seems bowed, cracked, or bent. The gutters may start pulling away from your home as hangers warp or loosen. 

You might notice other symptoms first, such as water overflowing your gutters or pooling around the foundation of your home. Water may even begin to make its way into your home through the basement or ceiling.


Prevention and Maintenance

Once fixed, you should take steps to prevent your gutters from sagging in the future. Clean your gutters thoroughly and regularly, whether you tackle the task yourself or hire a professional, at least twice per year. If you have pine trees near your home, we suggest removing needles from your gutters every three months. Inspect them periodically and be on the lookout for signs of a problem, such as puddles or soil erosion. Consider installing gutter guards to reduce debris buildup, and call a professional if you have any questions about maintenance or potential issues.


Our Conclusion

Sagging gutters have several potential causes, including clogs and improper gutter slope. If you notice sagging gutters, address the problem immediately. Without functioning gutters, your home is vulnerable to a host of issues related to water damage, such as foundation cracks, roof leaks, and flooded garden beds.

Fortunately, there are solutions, many of which you can do yourself. Potential solutions include clearing clogged gutters of debris, adjusting your gutters’ slope, reinforcing their support, and installing a downspout. Consider installing one of the best gutter guards for pine needles to help prevent future clogs that result in sagging; for this, professional installation may be required.


FAQ About How To Fix Sagging Gutters

What causes gutters to sag?

Debris buildup and water backup can cause gutters to sag. Debris that makes its way into gutters can form clogs that prevent water from draining properly, which increases the strain on the gutters. Gutters may also sag due to poor installation, insufficient support, or warping.

How do you fix standing water in gutters?

Here are a few things you can do to fix standing water in your gutters:

  • Clear any clogs or debris in the gutters or downspouts.
  • Check the slope and adjust it if needed.
  • Replace any damaged hangers to fix sagging.
  • Install new brackets, new spikes, or additional support.
  • Install an additional downspout near the problem area.
  • Install a brand-new gutter system.

Can I repair sagging gutters myself, or should I hire a professional?

Many homeowners are capable of handling sagging gutter repair jobs on their own. However, you should hire a professional if you are uncomfortable with ladders or have a particularly high roof. You may also want to hire a professional if your gutters are severely damaged and need to be replaced.

What are the most common causes of sagging gutters?

The most common causes of sagging gutters are the following:

  • Standing water and debris buildup
  • Warping and weather damage
  • Improper gutter sizing or installation

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