The very first thing to ask yourself when you are shopping for new gutters is, “Why?” This question will help you answer most of the questions you’ll have before making your ultimate selection.
In our experience as a local gutter service, here are only three reasons homeowners will be in the market for new rain gutters:
An Upgrade – Installing new gutters can really impact the appearance of your home, improving its look in a subtler way than painting or landscaping.
A New Home – Building a home comes with a constant stream of choices about both appearance and functionality. Rain gutters are no exception. Choosing the gutters that go on your house is important because they will need to last at least 15-20 years or more.
A Renovation – If your home’s roof has suffered damage, the gutters might need to be replaced. Or, they might just be aging and need to be replaced.
You 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 too much 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 which features are worth spending money on or if you can go with a more affordable product.
Here are the questions you’ll need to ask when it’s time to install new gutters.
HOW TO CHOOSE GUTTER MATERIALS?
The best part about purchasing new gutters is choosing the style. Gutters can blend in or stand out against your home, depending on your preference.
These are the options for materials, in order of lowest to highest cost:
VINYL & PLASTIC GUTTERS
Vinyl and plastic are affordable choices that hold up well in most scenarios, except in extremely cold climates, where they can wear down. Vinyl and plastic gutters are sufficient in nearly every region of the country, and they are available in a wide range of colors.
METAL & ALUMINUM GUTTERS
These mid-priced options are both attractive and durable. Both materials come in a variety of colors too. They are fairly lightweight and are not difficult to install. Galvanized metals (coated with zinc to protect them) will withstand rust and corrosion even better.
COPPER & STAINLESS STEEL GUTTERS
Of all the gutter materials, copper and stainless steel are the most expensive, but are the most eye-catching as well. Homeowners in Parker who choose these options are searching for an elegant touch, and that’s exactly what they’ll get!
WHAT ARE IMPORTANT GUTTER FEATURES?
Most of the gutter options above will offer both of these options below:
SECTIONAL OR SEAMLESS GUTTERS
Sectional gutters – These types of rain gutters are made in smaller sections, so they are easy to install. In fact, homeowners decide to install their own sectional gutters. This type is the more affordable choice, and they are made with more seams, which means there are more areas where leaks can occur.
Seamless gutters – Seamless gutters should be installed by a professional contractor because they require specialized equipment. They’re more expensive to buy and install, but less likely to leak or wear down than sectional gutters.
K-STYLE OR HALF-ROUND GUTTERS
K-Style – K-Style gutters are far more popular because they look great with virtually any style of home. They are better for angled roofs, which are far more common. This one of the reasons for their popularity. And, they are not hard to install. Most homeowners are capable enough to install their own K-Style gutters by themselves.
Half-Round – Half-Round gutters are usually made of copper and steel, and they complement rounded roofs, popular before 1950, so they provide homes a luxurious, established curb appeal. However, modern styles made from vinyl and plastic provide the best of both worlds, being lightweight and functional. Half-Round rain gutters are harder to install, but they are easier to clean out, when the time comes for gutter cleaning.
DOES CLIMATE AFFECT GUTTERS?
The climate of the city you live in may dictate a lot about which gutters you can havecontractors 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 online on the National Weather Service or the U.S. Weather Bureau website. You should also check the maximum rainfall intensity for the city you live in. This is the max amount of rain that can happen within a 5-minute span.
Roof Square Footage – Square footage is a basic length times width calculation for standard roofs. However, you will need to factor in all the surfaces of multi-faceted roofs.
Roof-Pitch Factor – A steep roof will collect more wind-blown rain than a less sloped roof. Figuring out your roof-pitch factor is going to help you estimate how much rainfall will actually be collected, regardless of the rainfall statistics found online.
DOES IT SNOW WHERE YOU LIVE?
Snowfall is included in precipitation calculations, but you definitely want to consider the potential for ice dams forming on your roof. If it snows often in your city, you need to seek professional guidance concerning the type of gutters that help to prevent ice dams from forming, which might severely damage your roof.
Of course, the last question is arguably the most important …
HOW TO INSTALL GUTTERS?
You also need to ask yourself if you’re going to try to do the work on your own, or if you want to enlist the services of a professional to install your gutters. Professional installation ensures maximum efficiency, instead of doing it yourself.
Most homeowners are better off paying a little extra for professional labor, knowing that the job will be done right. An added bonus of hiring Parker Gutters & More! to install your gutters is that we can help you answer all your questions about gutters so that you are able to find the perfect style and type.