How to join uPVC guttering
Leaking gutters are the bane of most homeowner’s lives.
Though there are lots of reasons why water might be gushing out over the sides of your gutters, one of the most common causes is how the lengths of pipe have been joined.
That’s why, whether you’re fitting new gutters yourself or enlisting the help of a professional, it’s essential that all lengths are joined correctly.
To help prevent potential future leaks, here Total Pipeline Systems talk you through the process of removing and fitting uPVC guttering step-by-step.
How To Remove uPVC Guttering And Fittings
Before you start, you need to remove and dispose of your existing guttering.
Most properties throughout the UK have uPVC guttering. As it’s exceptionally lightweight, it’s easy enough to remove yourself.
Once you’ve removed the old guttering, you then need to carefully select new guttering and fittings.
How to join uPVC guttering in 10 steps
To replace and fit gutters without any errors, you’ll need a basic level of DIY knowledge and the following tools:
- a pencil
- a screwdriver
- a drill
- a piece of string
- a spirit level
- a hacksaw
- a silicone spray lubricant
- a pair of safety glasses
- protective gloves
Step 1 – Hang a plumb bob from the fascia
To establish the position of the running outlet and to determine how the guttering will fit along the property, a plumb bob (sometimes called a plummet) must be hung directly over the drain that your gutter’s downpipe will run into.
Step 2 – Mark the overall position and the fixing holes
Hold the stop end or gutter running outlet section in place and, using a pencil, make a point of where it will be fixed onto your fascia. This mark shouldn’t be any more than 50mm below the level of the roof.
Step 3 – Fix the outlet to the fascia board
Drill pilot holes through the marks you made to fit the outlet and secure in place using the screws recommended by the manufacturer. If you’re using a cordless screwdriver, it’s worth lowering the speed so you don’t overtighten the screws and potentially damage the fascia board.
Step 4 – Position and fix the fascia bracket
We recommend fitting guttering systems with a gradient of 1:350 (roughly 3mm per metre length of gutter run) so they can catch the rain running off your roof and prevent it from falling onto the ground. The fascia bracket should be higher than the outlet. To accurately position the bracket, grab your spirit level and measure from the outlet to 100mm from the opposite end of the fascia. Obviously, if the outlet is in the centre of the fascia, you will need to repeat this process at both ends.
Step 5 – Tie a string or brick line from the fascia bracket to the outlet
After positioning the fascia bracket, you need to tie a piece of string between this and the outlet and pull it tight to create an accurate line. Then, with your spirit level, measure the fall on the string. If your initial calculations were correct, it should drop roughly 3mm every metre.
Step 6 – Position and fix the remaining brackets
From the fitted fascia bracket, measure and mark where the remaining brackets will go along the fascia board. These should be just touching the string to maintain an even fall, no more than 1 metre apart, and 150mm from any angle or stop end. Again, using the appropriate fittings, secure the brackets in place and avoid overtightening them.
Step 7 – Lubricate the seals with a silicone-based spray
Whilst the next step is to fit the gutter and other components, to make the installation a little easier for you, we recommend using a silicone spray lubricant so you don’t have to put too much pressure on them. Plus, it stops water leaking as a result of expansion and contraction.
Step 8 – Fit the first length of gutter and install a union bracket
To fit the first length of guttering, start from the outlet and make your way towards the highest point, tilting it slightly so that it sits beneath the back clip. Gently but firmly, push down at the front of the gutter to ‘snap’ it into place. Once the first length is level and in position, a union bracket will make it easier for you to connect the next section. This is screwed into the fascia using the screws provided and recommended by the manufacturer.
Step 9 – Fit the next section of gutter to the union bracket
When fitting the next section, take extra care to ensure the joints line up with the insertion depth that is marked on the bracket to allow water to drain as normal. Each section will snap into the pipe clip in the same way as the first length.
Step 10 – Cut the final piece of gutter to length
Continue to join the remaining lengths. When you get to the last one, measure the gap remaining and use a hacksaw to cut it to the required length. Once you’ve done that and fitted it to the union bracket, all that’s left to do is fit an external stop end to complete the gutter run.
Ready to install uPVC guttering?
The chances are you’ve got all the tools you need in your tool kit already, but if you’re unsure which type of guttering is best for your property, or you’ve got a question, get in touch with Total Pipes.
We are always on hand and will be more than happy to assist you in selecting the most suitable rainwater system – taking into consideration your budget, location, and preferences – and offering expert advice.