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BACK TO BASICS ON GUTTERS

15 December 2016

When you are shopping for a new gutter system, you will need to choose from a variety of materials including aluminum, galvanized steel, vinyl, and copper. They are usually sold by the linear foot but always make sure that your price includes all the necessary elements; gutters, downspouts, corner joints, fittings and brackets.

Materials and Pricing

Aluminum is the most popular on the market because it’s relatively inexpensive, durable and easy to install. Unlike steel, aluminum will not corrode over time and it’s available in a wide range of colors. Sales representatives will generally offer pricing (including installation) “per linear foot.”  Although the costs of an aluminum systems may vary, homeowners can expect to pay between $3-$6 per linear foot.

Galvanized steel gutter systems will eventually rust over time (20-25 years) but they are strong and durable, making it a popular option for regions with climatic conditions of heavy rain and snow. Steel is a bit more expensive than aluminum but don’t forget, there’s also the stainless steel option which doesn’t rust.

Copper is also a durable option. It provides beautiful aesthetic to your homes facade for owners looking to customize their property. People who are interested in a copper gutter system should consider that the appearance and color of the copper will gradually change with time and exposure to sun and the rain.

Vinyl is the least expensive option for gutters on the market. It’s very easy to cut, to operate, easy to assemble and available in spare parts. Vinyl tends to become brittle and breaks in cold climates. It ‘s not as robust or durable than their metal counterparts.

SHAPE & SIZE

Owners will have to choose between different styles of gutters and downspouts that will generally be round or rectangular.

In regards to size, the home owner must choose the gutter size and the thickness.

To determine the size of the system needed for his property, the homeowner must take into account the level of rain in his region. A property that gets a lot of rain or has a sharp slope in the roof, the system will be greater. And if the house is surrounded by tall trees, it will need a larger system to accommodate the falling leaves without clogging the gutters.

Finally, the home owner must decide between a system in sections with or without seams. Traditionally, gutters were sold in sections to be assembled, leaving seams. Today, the aluminum gutter systems are required to be waterproof at the seams to prevent leakage.

Copper or steel systems are effectively welded together at the seams, which eliminates the need for a sealant. Proper installation those systems should include welding, although some installations use a metallic sealing product.

Seamless gutter systems are becoming increasingly popular, therefore require professional installers. An integrated system will use a special machine on site to form long gutter sections (usually copper or aluminum) that will run the length of the seamless line.

ACCESSORIES

The gutter industry has seen an explosion of manufacturers side accessories. Screens, barriers and other devices used to keep foreign objects out of the gutter are literally sold everywhere. When checking their gutters, the owners must evaluate the types of debris that may land on or in their grooves.

They’re even hybrid products that will effectively fill the length of the gutter, thus enabling water to flow through the channel while maintaining solid objects out of the way.

Avoid water intrusion in your home by taking the time to choose the right gutter system for your property with the help of professionals.