The number one thing to consider when you are shopping for new gutters is, “Why?” This question will help to answer the subsequent questions you’ll have before making your ultimate selection.
In our experience as a local gutter service, here are only three reasons homeowners might be shopping for new gutters:
An Upgrade – Installing new rain gutters can significantly impact the appearance of your home, enhancing its look in a more subtle way than painting or new landscaping.
A New House – Designing a home comes with a constant stream of choices about both appearance and functionality. Gutters are no exception. Deciding on the gutters that go on your house is important because they will need to last at least 15-20 years.
A Renovation – If the roof on your home is damaged, the gutters may have to be replaced, too. Or, they might simply be aging and need to be replaced with new ones.
You obviously know why you are installing new gutters on your home, but the reason often has underlying motivations…
You want to sell your house.
You want to renovate without spending a lot of money.
Your landscaping is being damaged by ineffective gutters.
Figuring out your “Why” will help to give you direction while you are shopping. You’ll know what features are worth spending money on or if you can choose a more affordable product.
Here are the major questions you’ll want to consider when purchasing new gutters.
HOW TO CHOOSE GUTTER MATERIALS?
The fun part of purchasing new gutters is choosing the materials. Gutters will blend in or stand out against your home exterior, depending on your preference.
These are the choices for materials, in order of lowest to highest cost:
VINYL & PLASTIC GUTTERS
Vinyl and plastic are affordable materials that are durable in most cases, except in cold climates, where they will wear down. Vinyl and plastic gutters are acceptable in most regions of the country, and they are available in a wide range of colors.
METAL & ALUMINUM GUTTERS
These reasonably priced materials are attractive and durable. Both of these materials come in a variety of colors too. They are fairly light and not hard to install. Galvanized metals (coated with zinc to protect them) withstand rust and corrosion even better.
COPPER & STAINLESS STEEL GUTTERS
Of all the rain gutter materials, copper and stainless steel cost the most, but are the most eye-catching as well. Homeowners in CITY who choose these options are searching for an elegant touch, and that’s just what they’ll get!
WHAT ARE IMPORTANT GUTTER FEATURES?
Most of the gutter options above offer both of these options:
SECTIONAL OR SEAMLESS GUTTERS
Sectional gutters – These types of gutters come in smaller sections, so they’re easier to install. In fact, homeowners decide to install their own sectional gutters on their own. This type is the less expensive choice, and they have more seams, which means more areas where leaks are going to occur.
Seamless gutters – Seamless gutters will need to be installed by a contractor because they need specialized equipment. They’re more expensive to purchase and install, but they are less likely to leak than sectional gutters.
K-STYLE OR HALF-ROUND GUTTERS
K-Style – K-Style gutters are far more popular because they look great with every style of home. They’re better for angled roofs, which are more common. This one of the reasons for their popularity. And, they are not hard to install. Most homeowners are proficient enough to install their own K-Style gutters by themselves.
Half-Round – Half-Round gutters are traditionally made of copper and steel, and they complement rounded roofs, popular before 1950, so they provide homes a luxurious, classic appearance. However, more modern styles made from vinyl and plastic offer the best of both worlds, because they are lightweight and functional. Half-Round gutters are harder to install, but easier to clean, when the time comes for gutter cleaning.
DOES CLIMATE AFFECT GUTTERS?
The climate of your region will determine a lot about the gutters you can have. Like we mentioned, some types of materials will not hold up well in extremely cold climates.
The most important climate factor to consider is how much work the gutters will have to do. Essentially, how much rain or water are the gutters going to need to withstand?
Professional gutter companies in CITY will take a lot of factors into consideration to determine the size and the type of rain gutters that will work the best for your roof.
WHAT IS THE FORMULA?
Luckily, the formula professional gutter contractors use is not a secret. Here are the pieces of specific information you will need to decide how large your gutters should be:
Average Rainfall – This weather statistic can be found on the National Weather Service or the U.S. Weather Bureau website. You should also look into the maximum rainfall intensity for the city you live in. This is the max amount of rain that occurs within a 5-minute span.
Roof Square Footage – Square footage is a simple length times width calculation for standard roofs. However, you will need to figure all the surfaces of multi-faceted roofs.
Roof-Pitch Factor – A roof that is steep will collect more wind-blown rain than a less sloped roof. Determining your roof-pitch factor will help you estimate how much rainfall will actually be collected, regardless of the average rainfall statistics.
DOES IT SNOW WHERE YOU LIVE?
Snowfall will be included in average precipitation calculations, but you also want to be aware of the potential for ice dams forming on your roof. If it snows often in your region, you should seek professional guidance about the type of gutters that help to prevent ice dams from forming, which might really damage your roof.
Of course, the final question is probably the most important …
HOW TO INSTALL GUTTERS?
You also have to ask yourself if you’re going to try to do the work yourself, or if you are going to enlist the services of a professional to install your gutters. Professional installation ensures efficiency, compared to doing it yourself.
Most homeowners should consider paying a little extra for labor, knowing that the job will be done correctly. Another bonus of hiring LikeNew Lawton Gutters to install your gutters is that we can help you answer all of your questions about gutters so that you find the best style and type.