The first thing to ask yourself when you are planning to install new gutters is, “Why?” This question will help to answer many of the following questions you’ll have before making your selection.
In our experience as a local gutter service, here are three reasons homeowners might be in the market for new gutters:
An Upgrade – Installing new gutters can really affect the curb appeal of your house, improving its look in a subtler way than painting or landscaping.
A New House – Building a new home comes with a constant stream of decisions about both appearance and functionality. Rain gutters are no exception. Deciding on the gutters that go on your home is important because they will need to last at least 20 years.
A Renovation – If the roof on your home been damaged, the gutters might have to be replaced, too. Or, they might simply be aging and need to be replaced.
You know why you are installing new gutters, but the reason usually has underlying motivations…
You want to sell your home.
You want to renovate but not spend a lot of money.
Your landscaping is getting ruined by ineffective gutters.
Determining your “Why” will help to give you direction while you are shopping for new gutters. You’ll know if certain features are important or if you can choose a less expensive product.
Here are the major questions you’ll have when it’s time to purchase new gutters.
HOW TO CHOOSE GUTTER MATERIALS?
The best part about choosing new gutters is choosing the style. Gutters will blend in or stand out against your home, depending on your preference.
These are the choices you will have, in order of cost:
VINYL & PLASTIC GUTTERS
Vinyl and plastic are economical options that hold up well in most scenarios, other than extremely cold climates, where they will wear down. Vinyl and plastic gutters are sufficient in most regions of the country, and they come in a wide variety of colors.
METAL & ALUMINUM GUTTERS
These mid-priced materials are both attractive and durable. Both of these materials are available in a wide range of colors as well. They are fairly light and easy to install. Galvanized metals (coated with zinc to protect them) are able to withstand rust and corrosion even better.
COPPER & STAINLESS STEEL GUTTERS
Of all the gutter materials available, copper and stainless steel cost the most, but the most stylish as well. Homeowners in Springfield who choose these materials are searching for an elegant touch, and that’s just what they’ll get!
WHAT ARE IMPORTANT GUTTER FEATURES?
Almost all of the gutter types above offer these options below:
SECTIONAL OR SEAMLESS GUTTERS
Sectional gutters – These types of rain gutters come in smaller sections, so they’re easy to install. In fact, homeowners decide to install their own sectional gutters. This type is the less expensive choice, and they have more seams, which means there are more sections where leaks are going to occur.
Seamless gutters – Seamless gutters should be installed by a local contractor because they require special tools. They are more expensive to buy and install, but less likely to leak than sectional gutters.
K-STYLE OR HALF-ROUND GUTTERS
K-Style – K-Style gutters are popular because they look great with every style of home. They are better for angled roofs, which are more common. This speaks to their popularity. Plus, they are not hard to install. Many 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 prior to 1950, so they provide homes a regal, classic curb appeal. However, more modern styles made out of vinyl and plastic provide the best of both worlds, being lightweight and functional. Half-Round rain gutters are a lot harder to install, but easier to clean out, when it’s time for gutter cleaning.
DOES CLIMATE AFFECT GUTTERS?
The climate of the city you live in will determine a lot about which gutters you should purchase. As we already mentioned, some types of materials don’t hold up in extremely cold climates.
The single most important climate factor to think about is how much work the gutters will have to do. Basically, how much rain or water are your gutters going to have to handle?
Professional gutter contractors in Springfield will take several factors into consideration to determine the size and type of rain gutters that will work best for your home.
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 online on the National Weather Service or the U.S. Weather Bureau website. You should also check the maximum rainfall intensity for your area. This is the maximum amount of rain that will occur within a 5-minute span.
Roof Square Footage – Square footage is a standard length times width calculation for basic roofs. However, you need to figure all the surfaces of multi-faceted roofs.
Roof-Pitch Factor – A steep roof will collect more wind-blown rain than a roof that is less sloped. Figuring out your roof-pitch factor will help you estimate how much rainfall will actually be collected, regardless of the rainfall statistics.
DOES IT SNOW WHERE YOU LIVE?
Snowfall is factored into precipitation calculations, but you also want to consider the potential for ice dams forming on your roof. If it snows a lot in your city, you need to seek professional guidance about the type of gutters that best prevent ice dams from forming, which might really damage your roof.
Of course, the last question is probably the most important …
HOW TO INSTALL GUTTERS?
You also have to ask yourself if you’re going to do the work on your own, or if you are going to pay a professional to install your gutters. Professional installation will ensure maximum efficiency, compared to doing it yourself.
Most homeowners are better off paying a little extra for labor, knowing that the job will be done right. An added bonus of hiring Clean Home Gutters to install the gutters is that we will help you answer all your questions about gutters so that you are able to find the best style and type.