The first thing to ask yourself when you are purchasing new gutters is, “Why?” This pivotal question will help you answer many of the subsequent questions you’ll have before making your final selection.
In our experience as a local gutter service, here are just three reasons homeowners will be shopping for new rain gutters:
An Upgrade – Switching out the rain gutters can drastically affect the exterior style of your home, increasing its look in a subtler way than painting or new landscaping.
A New Home – Designing a home comes with a constant stream of choices about appearance and functionality. Gutters are no exception. Deciding on the gutters that go on your home 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 might have to be replaced. Or, they may just be getting too old and need to be replaced with new ones.
You know why you are replacing the rain gutters on your home, but the reason typically has underlying motivations…
You want to sell your house.
You want to renovate without spending too much money.
Your landscaping is getting damaged by ineffective gutters.
Determining your “Why” will help to provide direction while you are shopping for new gutters. You’ll know if certain features are worth spending money on or if you can choose a less expensive product.
Here are the major questions you’ll have when it’s time to install new gutters.
HOW TO CHOOSE GUTTER MATERIALS?
The best part about purchasing new gutters is picking out the materials. Gutters will blend in or stand out against your house, 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 choices that hold up well in most cases, except in cold climates, where they will deteriorate. Vinyl and plastic gutters are sufficient in most regions of the country, and they are available in a wide variety of colors.
METAL & ALUMINUM GUTTERS
These mid-priced materials are stylish and durable. Both of these materials come in a variety of colors too. They are fairly light and not difficult to install. Galvanized metals (coated with zinc to protect them) will fend off rust and corrosion even better.
COPPER & STAINLESS STEEL GUTTERS
Of all the rain gutter materials, copper and stainless steel are the most expensive, but the most attractive as well. Homeowners in Commerce City who choose these materials are looking for an elegant touch, and that’s exactly what they’ll get!
WHAT ARE IMPORTANT GUTTER FEATURES?
Almost all of the gutter options above will offer these options below:
SECTIONAL OR SEAMLESS GUTTERS
Sectional gutters – These types of rain gutters come in smaller sections, so they are easier to install. In fact, homeowners decide to install their own sectional gutters. This type is the less expensive choice, and they are made with more seams, which means there are more sections where leaks can occur.
Seamless gutters – Seamless gutters need to be installed by a local contractor because they need specialized equipment. They’re more expensive to purchase and to 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 virtually any style of home. They’re better for angled roofs, which are far more common. This attributes to their popularity. And, they are not hard to install. Many 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 are best for rounded roofs, popular before 1950, so they give homes a luxurious, established appearance. However, more modern styles made from vinyl and plastic offer the best of both worlds, being lightweight and functional. Half-Round rain gutters are a lot harder to install, but much easier to clean, when the time comes for gutter cleaning.
DOES CLIMATE AFFECT GUTTERS?
The climate of your region may dictate a lot about the gutters you should purchase. As we mentioned, certain types of materials don’t hold up well in extremely cold climates.
The 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 Commerce City can take many factors into consideration to get a good idea of the size and type of gutters that are going to work the best for your home.
WHAT IS THE FORMULA?
Luckily, the formula professional home exterior contractors use is no secret. Here are the pieces of specific information you will need to decide how large your gutters should be:
Average Rainfall – This statistic can be found online on the National Weather Service or the U.S. Weather Bureau website. You should also find the maximum rainfall intensity for the city you live in. This is the maximum amount of rain that occurs within a 5-minute span.
Roof Square Footage – Square footage is a basic length times width calculation for standard roofs. However, you want 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. Knowing your roof-pitch factor is going to help to estimate how much rainfall will actually be collected, regardless of the rainfall statistics found online.
DOES IT SNOW WHERE YOU LIVE?
Snowfall is going to be factored into precipitation calculations, but you also want to be aware of the potential for ice dams. If it snows regularly in your region, you should seek professional guidance concerning the type of gutters that best prevent ice dams from forming, which can severely damage your roof.
Of course, the final question is possibly 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 hire a professional to install your new gutters. Professional installation will ensure maximum efficiency, compared to 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 Commerce City Gutters to install the gutters is that we can help you answer all your questions about gutters so that you find the best style and type.