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I have a 30 year old house, which I have owned for the last five years. The gutters are getting old and I want to replace all. Other than being old and rusty they are working fine based on my observation. However, I am very confused by the following situation: I asked several gutter companies about this, but I get different answers, and I am not sure how I am going to hire the right contractor. I have attached an image from my house. As you can see there are wood blocks (1/2 inch thick) every ~16 inches between fascia and gutter (4 inch size). I am not sure why there is a gap between gutter and fascia board. Does it have any function?

So far the answers I got from the contractors:

  1. They do not know.
  2. It might be aesthetic.
  3. Gutters were too narrow, original installer needed extra space to extend the gutter relatively to the roof edge.

Proposed solutions I got so far:

  1. Remove the wood blocks and put an 5 inch gutter it will compensate for the gap. Gap is not needed.
  2. Remove the wood blocks and install same size 4 inch gutter, as gap is too small to make difference.
  3. Do not remove the blocks install same size gutter without any modification.
  4. Some wood blocks are old, needs to be replaced, but I do not want to cut them there are too many of them. Instead, I will put another half an inch thick Azek Fascia on the existing fascia to provide the same distance between the roof edge and the gutter (this proposal will remove the gap. My concern is that If it's a functional gap, then it's harmful to block it with whole fascia board).

I am not very experienced home owner. I thought that this should be very easy job for gutter companies. It's not a rocket science. On the other hand, I am getting many conflicting answers that shake my confidence in the contractor. I am ready to hire someone, I just do not know who to trust.

Any expert opinion is much appreciated. Thanks.enter image description here

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    Ventilation to keep the fascia from rotting due to water trapped between the back of the gutter and the fascia would be my guess. Frankly that section of roof seems to have the drip-edge rather close to the facsia, rather than overhanging what I'd call a "normal" amount so that water would reliably drip off it rather than run down the fascia, but that might just be a poor angle of picture misleading me.
    – Ecnerwal
    Jun 18, 2020 at 2:02
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    You are right about drip edge. It's touching the fascia. No gap between fascia and drip edge. If that was the question. Again I am surprised that no contractor mention anything about it. And ventilation theory makes sense.
    – Supertech
    Jun 18, 2020 at 2:06
  • Is that the only section with the blocks?
    – Jack
    Jun 18, 2020 at 4:58
  • No all the gutters have it. Total 147 foot long gutter.
    – Supertech
    Jun 18, 2020 at 10:31
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    run off doesn't fall straight down; it curves away from the roof. if the gutters were flush and as low as they are, heavy rain would shoot right over the trough. why are they that low? you must live in an area with lots of snow/ice; the lower height keeps sliding ice chunks from ripping out the gutter, they pass right over it as they slide down.
    – dandavis
    Jun 18, 2020 at 15:58

4 Answers 4

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One purpose of those block may be to extend the mounting point for the gutter. Look at how the gutter is attached to those block and where the fascia lower edge is in relationship to the gutter. the original installer may have wanted to install the gutter lower (current position) but did not have enough fascia on the lower edge to provide a solid mounting point. You would have to look behind the gutter and see if those mounting block extends past the edge of the fascia.

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  • No fascia is wider. No reason to put mounting block to lower the gutter.
    – Supertech
    Jun 18, 2020 at 10:34
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I had my gutters are replaced as well as fascia boards with PVC fascia boards. This also solved the problem with carpenter bees. No more spacer between gutter and fascia board and they work great. So far, the most logical explanation I got from couple of contractors (one of them got the job) was that the original gutters were wood gutters. Since those are usually smaller, spacer must have been needed to adjust. This was pointed out by some of you above also.

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I've seen gutters right up against facia, facia was 2x8 and hung lower than gutter. condensation built up on underside of gutter . water moved to back of gutter , transferred to facia and ran down facia to lowest point and dripped until dry. after that I started using a 1x4 shingle mold. that supports gutter well and gutter is 3/4 inch away from facia and at least a 1/2 inc lower than 1x4 shine mold behind gutter.

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  • This doesn't seem to attempt to answer the question. Please see How to Answer and take the tour. We're not a discussion forum. Please make the effort to capitalize and punctuate properly so you're more understandable.
    – isherwood
    Apr 6, 2023 at 14:02
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In my previous house, I had hired a guy to roll continuous gutters on site. I did not want the water to overflow back against the fascia, to

  1. Avoid wood rot
  2. Possibly come back into the soffit space in the future as nails rusted/moved.

So, I had him invent a tool that fit on his machine to make slots in the front as he rolled the gutter out. This allowed the water to drip out the front when they were full. Now he uses the tool in all his jobs.

I think the same reasons are valid here.

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