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Home Maintenance  /  February 24, 2016

Gauging Gutters Before You Buy: What to Know When Gutter Shopping

Gutters – you can’t live with them, and you can’t live without them. It seems like the only time people talk about gutters is when they’re not working, or you’re buying new ones. But when the time does come, it pays to know what you’re talking about – specifically, knowing which gutters are right for your home’s style and your local climate.

If new gutters are on your to-do list this spring and summer, check out the following popular material and style options for gutters to help you choose the right ones for your home:

3 Popular Gutter Material Options to Consider

Aluminum Gutters

Because aluminum is affordable and extremely rust and corrosion-resistant, it is one of the most popular and widely-used gutter options available. Aluminum gutters hold up well even in extreme temperatures, making them ideal for even the hottest and coldest of climates. If you live in an area that receives heavy snowfall, you may want to choose a heavier weight, or gauge, aluminum gutter of .032 for maximum strength. It may be a little more expensive than lighter gauges, but will be well worth the investment come wintertime.

Average Cost: $3 – $9 per linear foot
Lifespan: About 20 years
Pros: Very durable, affordable, many color options to choose from, resists rusting, fading and corrosion.
Cons: Can dent more easily than heavier materials.

Copper Gutters

Copper is a beautiful, timeless gutter material option that has been used on home exteriors for centuries. Like all outdoor copper fixtures, copper gutters will oxidize and turn green over time – around 15 to 20 years to be exact. This process will not impact the strength of your gutters, but know that it will take some maintenance to prevent this if you’re not a fan of the look. However, if you love the green, or patina, on old copper, there are ways to speed up the oxidation process. A local handyman can help you keep your copper gutters looking how you want year-round.

Average Cost: $17 – $20 per linear foot
Lifespan: 50+ years
Pros: Extremely durable, distinct look can up your home’s curb appeal.
Cons: Much more expensive than other materials, must be installed with only copper nails and fasteners, requires maintenance to prevent copper oxidation.

Vinyl Gutters

Vinyl gutters are a great go-to budget gutter option, as they are much more affordable than most other materials. However, because they aren’t as strong as their copper and aluminum counterparts, they may warp or crack in extreme heat and cold, and can even sag under heavy snow loads. But if you live in a climate with mild seasonal highs and lows with little-to-no snow in the winters, vinyl gutters may be the perfect, affordable gutter choice for your home.

Average Cost: $3 – $5 per linear foot
Pros: Extremely affordable, easy installation, resistant to rusting, fading and corrosion.
Cons: Not as durable as other options; can bend or crack under intense heat, cold or snow loads.

3 Popular Gutter Styles to Consider

In addition to choosing a material type, you’ll also have to decide on a gutter style that’s right for your home. There are three widely popular residential gutter styles: K-style, half-round, square and eaves gutters.

K-style gutters are the most popular gutter style option and fit in well with the majority of modern home constructions. K-style gutters are excellent at draining water – in fact, they can drain twice as much water as half-round gutters. Aluminum K-style gutters are the most popular material-style combination.

Half-round gutters look great on traditional or historic-style homes. Half-round gutters tend to be more expensive than other options, but are excellent at catching water and their design makes them less prone to clogs, which can prevent corrosion issues in the long run. Half-round copper gutters complement cedar, tile and slate roofing very well.

Eaves gutters, or fascia gutters, combine your gutter system with your home’s outer fascia board. Fascia gutters tend to be larger than other gutter styles, making them ideal at collecting large amounts of rainwater from homes in climates like those found in California or Oregon.

Need help installing your gutters? Call an expert handyman to do it right

Whether you need to install brand new gutters or just want some help maintaining or repairing your old ones, Handyman Connection of Carmel can help. Our team can handle a wide variety of household maintenance and installation needs, with the touch of high-quality craftsmanship your home deserves. For expert handyman services in Carmel or the Greater Indianapolis area, call 317-886-1747 today or fill out a form.

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