Gutter Hangers: How Far Apart Should They Be?

Gutter hangers are extremely important for the operation of your gutter system. The hangers need to be installed the right distance apart or they will not work properly.

The right gutter hangers (if installed right) will:

  • Maintain proper water flow.
  • Keep your gutters from falling off.
  • Keep your gutters from sagging.
  • Prevent ice, snow, or leaf buildup from damaging your gutters.
  • Last for decades

So let’s take a deeper look so you can avoid the common mistakes when installing gutter hangers.

How Far Apart Should Gutter Hangers be Installed?

The general rule of thumb is that gutter hangers should be placed every two to three feet apart. If you live in a colder area, gutter hangers may need to be placed closer together to account for the extra weight from snow and ice. Gutter spacing is highly dependent on the area you live in and what type of gutter hanger you plan to use.

If you want to learn about more gutter types, read this article about the two main kinds: k-style vs half-round gutters.

Hanger TypeSpacing (Normal)Spacing (Heavy Snow)
Hidden Hangers24 inches12-18 inches
Spike and Ferrule24-32 inches16-24 inches
Bracket and Strap Hangers36 inches18-24 inches

What Kind of Gutter Hangers Do You Need?

hidden gutter hangers spaced the correct distance apart how they should be

In the world of gutters, there are three main types of gutter hangers: spike and ferrule, hidden hangers, and bracket and strap hangers. The type of gutter hangers you choose for your project will depend on your budget, if you’re going the DIY route, or hiring a professional.

Spikes and Ferrule Hangers

Spike and ferrule gutter hangers are the most traditional way of attaching gutters to your house and are the most cost-effective. The gutters are attached to the fascia of your home with a spike.

There are both advantages and disadvantages to consider with this gutter hanger type.

Pros: They are cost-effective due to how easy they are to install. They have a simple design, are affordable, and easy to install.

They are relatively inexpensive compared to some alternative hanger systems.

Cons: Spike and ferrule hangers are notorious for slowly pulling away from the home over time. This leads to sagging gutters and bad water flow.

The spikes are visible from the outside which can hurt the curb appeal of your home.

Example: You can see the spikes slipping out in the photo to the right. This could be the reason you’re gutters are overflowing.

gutters with spike and ferrule. Spikes falling out of gutters

Because of this, most new gutters use hidden hanger brackets instead of spike and ferrule. But it comes down to your budget and installing spike and ferrule may be easier if you are planning a DIY project.

Hidden Hangers

Hidden hangers are generally considered the best gutter hangers in today’s day and age. They are essentially the same as bracket and strap hangers, except the brackets are hidden on the inside of the gutters so they cannot be viewed from the curb. They are also durable and offer a clean aesthetic.

They are commonly used with seamless gutters instead of regular gutters.

Pros: Hidden hangers have a high load capacity and are longer-lasting than spike and ferrule brackets. The brackets are also hidden, so they provide a cleaner look than other gutter mounting options.

Cons: Hidden hangers tend to be on the pricier side as they are more expensive to source and harder to install. DIY installers may struggle more to install this style of gutter hanger and may choose to use spike and ferrule instead.

Brackets and Straps

Bracket and strap hangers are exactly what they sound like. A bracket is attached to your home with a strap that wraps around the gutter to keep it supported and aligned.

Pros: They are more effective and long-lasting than spike and ferrule hangers as they evenly distribute the weight of the gutters along with any rainwater or leaves. Bracket and strap hangers can withstand more weight, making them a great option in areas with heavy snowfall or ice. They also tend to do better when the heat and cold causes the fascia board on your home (where the brackets attach) to expand and contract.

Cons: Bracket hangers are typically more expensive than spike and ferrule and can be more difficult to install due to the slightly more complex nature of the design. Bracket hangers are also visible from the curb, which in some cases can lower home values. However, the brackets can ALSO be used as a design element to add extra texture/color to your home design (which can actually improve home aesthetics).

Does the Gutter Material and Size Change the Gutter Hangers?

gutters along side of house with hidden hangers

The type of gutters you choose will impact the gutter hangers you pick for your gutter installation project as they all have different weights and sizes.

Different gutter materials, such as aluminum, steel, vinyl, or copper, have varying weights and strengths. Some materials are more durable and weather-resistant than others.

When choosing gutter hangers, it’s important to consider the compatibility of the hangers with the specific material of your gutters:

Aluminum and Steel Gutters: These are common gutter materials that can be supported by various types of hangers, including hidden hangers, bracket hangers, and strap hangers.

Vinyl Gutters: Vinyl gutters are lightweight and may require specialized hangers that are designed to be compatible with vinyl material.

Copper Gutters: Copper gutters are heavier and more rigid than other materials, so they may require stronger and more robust hangers to provide adequate support.

Wider Gutters: Wider gutters that have a larger capacity to handle rainwater may require hangers that provide greater support or a closer placement of the hangers relative to each other. These larger gutters may benefit from bracket hangers or strap hangers to ensure proper weight distribution and stability.

Smaller Gutters: Smaller gutters may be well-supported by hidden hangers, especially if they are made from lightweight materials. Gutter size will impact how many downspouts you need.

DIY Gutters vs Professional Gutters

When installing gutters, you have two options: DIY or hiring a professional.

DIY can save money and offer a learning experience, but it requires accurate measurements, proper tools, and time. Mistakes may lead to issues like water overflow or even cause safety issues such a the gutters not being secured properly, improper use of safety equipment, and even damages to the exterior of your home.

Professionals bring expertise, ensuring precise installation, efficient work, and long-term performance. However, this route involves higher upfront costs.

Choose DIY if you’re confident and enjoy hands-on projects or go with a pro for hassle-free, quality work.

Connect with a Contractor to Get the Gutters you Want on a Budget

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