How to Install Fiberglass Gutters
These factory-molded substitutes look just like traditional wood, but they'll never leak, rot, or need paint
Q: Our historic district says our replacement gutters must be wood, but we'd like to avoid the maintenance. Any ideas?
— Ashley Guir, Worcester, Mass.
Tom Silva replies: You may want to consider fiberglass gutters like those chosen by the owners of the latest TOH TV project house, in Arlington, Massachusetts. Made and hung by The Fiberglass Gutter Company, they look just like traditional wood, but they'll never rot or need paint. And because the seams are fused in the field, they won't leak, either.
Many historic districts in New England have already approved these gutters as replacements for wood. When your district sees them, maybe you'll also get a green light.
The company ships gutters in 26-foot sections all over the country, so take a look at the steps at right to see if the project is something you'd like to do yourself or hire out.
Pictured: Installer Peter Robinson makes sure the gutter slopes ¼ inch every 10 feet.
Attach Stand-Off Blocks
With a 12-inch miter saw, cut 5/16-inch slices from the end of a 5/4x6 piece of cellular PVC trim to use as stand-off blocks. Nail them vertically to the fascia at each rafter location with 18-gauge stainless-steel brads, as shown. Next, snap a chalk line over the blocks where you want the top of the gutter's back edge to go. It should slope toward the downspout location ¼ inch per 10 feet.