Gutter hangers are essential for the longevity of your home’s gutter system, but there are many different kinds to choose from. They all work fine, but each also offers distinct advantages for certain gutters and needs. Some are more attractive, others provide stronger support and still others are budget-friendly.
In this guide to gutter hangers, we’ll introduce you to the seven different types, explain the differences, and help you decide which ones are best for your needs.
- What Are Gutter Hangers?
- Types of Gutter Hangers
- Gutter Hanger Spacing Is Critical
- Benefits of Gutter Hangers for Your Home
- FAQ About The Different Kinds of Gutter Hangers
What Are Gutter Hangers?
As the name clearly suggests, gutter hangers support the weight of your gutters so they can do their job. They are usually made from aluminum, steel, or copper, and installation varies depending on your home’s architecture.
Small in size, they are nevertheless vital to the performance of your gutters. They not only hold the weight of the gutter and the water traveling through it, but they ensure that the gutter maintains a proper slope so water flows downhill toward the downspouts.
But while all gutter hangers perform the same function, they vary significantly in their style, material, compatibility with different gutters and roofs and, importantly, their maximum weight loads.
Types of Gutter Hangers
Depending on your climate, budget, and aesthetic preference, one of these types of gutter hangers fits the bill for your home.
Bracket Hangers – Hangers Secured to the Fascia Board
That’s a fancy way of saying these hangers are attached to the outer band of your roof and support your gutters no matter what the weather throws at them. You can use them for both K-style gutters and half-round varieties.
The spike or long screw fastened to the inner side of the hanger penetrates half the width of the gutter trough for more stability. Its main advantage is that it is compatible with both types of gutters and provides strong support.
Hidden Gutter Hangers – Invisible from the Ground
These hangers are similar to the bracket variety, but they aren’t visible from ground level. That makes them an excellent choice for a sleek look. Not only do these hangers add to the aesthetic of your roofline, but they also provide strong support all through the system.
Perfect for heavy rainfall and compatible with seamless gutter systems, this type of hanger requires a flat fascia board, so it’s best to speak with an expert before installation.
Spikes and Ferrules – A Simple Hanging Mechanism
These are simply spikes that fit through metal tubes (ferrules). The tube goes through the entire gutter trough, then you drive the spike through the tube and into the fascia board. They can only be used on K-Style gutters, so bear that in mind.
Spikes and ferrules are simple to install, but remember to make sure the spikes don’t split the wood backing while you’re installing them. You want them to go in cleanly and securely. You also have to think about leakage potential because of the two-hole installation method.
Additionally, be wary of ice damage; frost expansion and contraction can cause the ferrules to be damaged.
T-Bar or T-Strap Hangers – Attached Below the Shingles
This type of hanger consists of a clip inside the gutter, with an attached metal strap that slides under the shingles and is screwed to the roof. It is useful for homes that don’t have fascia to connect the gutters to. It’s also largely invisible from the ground, so it’s great for keeping your roofline sleek.
You may want to call on a pro for this job, though.
Exposed Brackets and Straps – Fastened to Fascia Board
These are U-shaped brackets and straps that cradle your gutter from below and attach to the fascia board. The advantage is that you don’t need to put holes in the gutters for spikes or screws.
The downside is that U-shape metal brackets and load-bearing straps can come loose during heavy downpours.
Hangers Secured to the Subroof
This is a variation of the exposed bracket and strap hanger. Instead of being secured to the fascia board, these are fastened to the roof beneath the shingles.
It is more secure, but any work involving the roof is not suitable for DIY-ers. You need someone with experience and expertise so you don’t damage the roof during installation.
Wrap-around Hangers – A Combination of Bracket and Straps Style
Once again, this tangle of skills and straps supports your gutter line from underneath – giving it the additional strength for heavy rainfall needed. It’s similar to the previous two straps-and-bracket types but uses T-straps for installation instead.
Professional installation is recommended for this one – you want to make sure your gutters are secure enough to take on anything. You can expect extra strength, secure fastening, and a neat finish from this type of hanger.
Gutter Hanger Spacing Is Critical
No matter which hanger you pick for your home, it’s important to use a sufficient number or hangers to support your gutters and to space them evenly. That way, the weight is evenly distributed.
The standard for both K-style and half-round gutters is between 24 and 36 inches apart. For areas with heavy snow or ice build-up, consider gutter hanger spacing of no more than 12 to 24 inches. With careful placement measured and fitted, your gutters will be ready to take on any storm.
You can tell that your hangers are no longer doing their part if you notice sagging or unevenness.
Benefits of Gutter Hangers for Your Home
Whether you go for hidden gutter hangers, secure T-Bar hangers, or a combination of straps and brackets, the final result will always be positive. Here are some of the top benefits of using gutter hangers.
Added support to the entire drainage system: By securely clamping the gutters, hangers provide additional support to ensure they stay in place. This is especially important for heavy rain areas where your gutters can take a beating.
Invisible aesthetic appeal: Achieving that clean and polished appearance is easier if you use hidden hangers and U-shape brackets. It’s often the final touch needed for a flawless roofline.
Protection from clogged drainage systems: Gutter hangers help to keep debris such as leaves and twigs at bay, so you won’t end up with overflows or backups.
Prevention of water damage: As long as gutters stay in place, they can do their job properly – keeping water away from your home and preventing outdoor flooding. Here’s where hangers are the stars of the show, maintaining your gutters firmly in position until it clears up.
Extended system lifespan: Regular maintenance aside, using gutter hangers is one of the simplest and most affordable ways to extend the life of your gutter system.
FAQ About The Different Kinds of Gutter Hangers
Gutter wedges fit slanted or canted facia boards, which are not perpendicular to the ground. Gutter hangers can also be used in conjunction with wedges, allowing you to attach a straight-back gutter (like a K-style gutter) to the canted fascia.
Yes, gutter hangers can make gutter cleaning a bit more inconvenient as you’ll need to work around each bracket. But if you choose the right type for your home, it will provide extra protection from access and make the ladder far more secure against it.
To prevent corrosion, use only hangers manufactured from the same material as your gutters. Galvanic corrosion can happen between two different metals, so they all must be the same. If you’re using a cheaper type, check regularly to make sure it’s still in good condition.
Yes, you can use gutter hangers on both sectional and seamless gutters. In this case, it’s especially important to pick the right style and make sure that they are securely attached to the roofline for extra protection.
You will likely need a screw gun, screws long enough to penetrate the gutter and go through the fascia board (which should be around 1.5 inches), and potentially a wrench as well.
Gutter Hangers – The Key to a Better Home!
Whether you’re not keen on the sight of gutters or you want to maximize their support, gutter hangers are an essential part of your roofline. Each type offers its own benefits depending on your budget, intended use, and climate.
As long as you make the right choice for you and follow the standard placement guide (no more than 24-36 inches between each hanger), your gutters will be ready to take on anything thrown their way.
Still undecided or a bit confused? We can help you connect with a gutter professional to help you make the best decision for your home.