How to Install Rain Gutters on a Patio Cover

A rain gutter system is designed to collect runoff and direct water away from the home.
A gutter system should route water away from the patio’s foundation.A gutter system should route water away from the patio’s foundation.
Gutters are commonly associated with roofs but can also be installed against a patio cover. Even if the patio’s foundation is made of concrete, water can seep underneath the foundation and damage the patio. The cost of a gutter system is minimal when compared to the cost of repairing foundation damage and installing the system is fairly straightforward.

Step 1

Mark a point with a pencil at the end of the gutter run, 1 inch down from the top of the patio cover. The gutter run is the edge of the patio cover to which you will attach the gutter.

Step 2

Create a mark at the opposite end of the gutter run that reflects a 1/4-inch downward slope for every 10 feet in gutter run length. For example, if the gutter run is 30 feet, you must account for a 3/4-inch slope. Mark the opposite end of the gutter run 1 3/4 inches down from the top of the patio cover. The slope will direct water to the downspout and prevent water from pooling in the gutter.

Step 3

Direct an assistant to hold one end of a chalk line against one of the marks on the gutter run. Hold the opposite end of the chalk line against the second mark. Snap the chalk line against the gutter run to create a line along the entire length of the gutter run. The chalk line will ensure that the gutters are installed at the proper slope across the entire length of the gutter run.

Step 4

Install the downspout outlet 12 inches away from the mark at the bottom of the slope. Position the outlet with the top of the outlet flush against the slope line. Drive 1/4-inch deck screws through the outlet and into the patio cover with a drill.

Step 5

Cut a 13-inch length of gutter with a hacksaw. This gutter piece will attach the downspout outlet to the mark made at the bottom of the slope. Press a gutter end cap piece against one end of the gutter until the piece snaps into place.

Step 6

Install the cut gutter piece. Apply a bead of silicone acrylic caulk to the interior edge of the downspout outlet. Insert 1 inch of the cut gutter piece into the downspout outlet and press the piece into the caulk. With the drill, drive a 1/4-inch deck screw through the gutter piece and into the patio cover.

Step 7

Measure the distance from the opposite side of the downspout outlet to the remaining chalk line. Add 1 inch to this measurement. The extra inch of the gutter will fit into the downspout outlet.

Step 8

Cut a length of gutter to the measured distance with the hacksaw and press an end cap piece against one end of the gutter until the piece snaps into place.

Step 9

Apply a bead of silicone acrylic caulk to the interior edge of the downspout outlet. Insert 1 inch of the cut gutter piece into the downspout outlet and press the piece into the caulk while an assistant holds the opposite end of the gutter piece.

Step 10

Drive 1/4-inch deck screws through the gutter piece and into the patio cover at 48-inch intervals.

Step 11

Apply a bead of silicone acrylic caulk to the exterior of the drain opening on the bottom of the downspout outlet.

Step 12

Press one end of a downspout elbow onto the downspout outlet’s drain opening.

Step 13

Measure the distance from the bottom of the downspout elbow to the ground, then reduce the amount by 1 foot. With a hacksaw, cut a length of gutter drainpipe to match this measurement, less the 1 foot.

Step 14

Apply a bead of silicone acrylic caulk to the exterior end of the elbow. Slide the drainpipe onto the elbow.

Step 15

Install gutter hangers to secure the drainpipe to the patio cover. Install one hanger for every 48 inches of drainpipe. Slide a hanger over the pipe and drive a 1/4-inch deck screw through the hanger’s bracket and into the patio cover.

Step 16

Position the back end of a splash block on the ground and directly below the bottom of the drainpipe. Although not required, the splash block will direct the gutter water away from the patio’s foundation.

Things You Will Need

  • Chalk line
  • 1/4-inch deck screws
  • Drill
  • Hacksaw
  • Silicone acrylic caulk

About the Author

John Stevens has been a writer for various websites since 2008. He holds an Associate of Science in administration of justice from Riverside Community College, a Bachelor of Arts in criminal justice from California State University, San Bernardino, and a Juris Doctor from Whittier Law School. Stevens is a lawyer and licensed real-estate broker.