The first thing to ask yourself when you are purchasing new gutters is, “Why?” This pivotal question will help to answer the questions you’ll have before making your selection.
In our experience as a local gutter service, here are three reasons homeowners will be in the market for new rain gutters:
An Upgrade – Installing new rain gutters can drastically affect the exterior style of your house, improving its look in a subtler way than painting or new landscaping.
A New House – Designing a new home comes with a lot of of choices about appearance and functionality. Rain gutters are no exception. Deciding on the gutters that go on your home is important because they should last at least 20 years or more.
A Renovation – If your home’s roof is damaged, the gutters might need to be replaced, too. Or, they might simply be getting too old and need to be replaced.
You obviously know why you are replacing the gutters, but the reason typically has underlying motivations…
You want to sell your house.
You want to renovate without spending a lot of money.
Your landscaping is being damaged by ineffective gutters.
Figuring out your “Why” will often give you direction while you are shopping for new gutters. You’ll know if certain features are must-haves or if you can choose a less expensive product.
Here are the questions you’ll need to ask when it’s time to purchase new gutters.
HOW TO CHOOSE GUTTER MATERIALS?
The best part about installing new gutters is choosing the style. Gutters will blend in or stand out against your home exterior, depending on your preference.
These are the options you will have, in order of cost:
VINYL & PLASTIC GUTTERS
Vinyl and plastic are economical options that hold up well in most cases, other than extremely cold climates, where they can become brittle. Vinyl and plastic gutters are acceptable in most regions of the country, and they are available in a wide variety of colors.
METAL & ALUMINUM GUTTERS
These reasonably priced materials are attractive and durable. Both of these materials come in a wide range of colors as well. They are fairly lightweight and easy to install. Galvanized metals (coated with zinc to protect them) withstand rust and corrosion even better.
COPPER & STAINLESS STEEL GUTTERS
Of all the rain gutter materials available, copper and stainless steel are the most expensive, but the most stylish as well. Homeowners in Gastonia who purchase these options are looking 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:
SECTIONAL OR SEAMLESS GUTTERS
Sectional gutters – These rain gutters come in smaller sections, so they are easy to install. In fact, homeowners choose to install their own sectional gutters. This type is the more affordable choice, and they have more seams, which means 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’re more expensive to purchase and install, but less likely to leak than sectional gutters.
K-STYLE OR HALF-ROUND GUTTERS
K-Style – K-Style gutters are far more popular because they look excellent with virtually any style of home. They’re better for angled roofs, which are more common. This one of the reasons for their popularity. Plus, they are not hard to install. Most 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 recommended for rounded roofs, popular prior to 1950, so they provide homes a luxurious, established curb appeal. However, more modern styles made out of vinyl and plastic provide the best of both worlds, because they are both lightweight and functional. Half-Round rain gutters are much 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 may dictate a lot about the gutters you should purchase. As we mentioned, certain materials don’t hold up in cold climates.
The most important climate factor is how much work the gutters will have to do. In other words, how much water are the gutters going to have to handle?
Professional gutter installers in Gastonia will take a lot of factors into account to determine the size and type of gutters that are going to work best for your house.
WHAT IS THE FORMULA?
Luckily, the formula professional 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 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. Determining your roof-pitch factor will help to estimate how much rainfall will be collected, regardless of the average rainfall statistics.
DOES IT SNOW WHERE YOU LIVE?
Snowfall is included in precipitation calculations, but you definitely want to consider the potential for ice dams. If it snows a lot in your state, you should seek professional guidance concerning the type of gutters that help to prevent ice dams, which might really damage your roof.
Of course, the last question is possibly the most important …
HOW TO INSTALL GUTTERS?
You also need to ask yourself if you’re willing to do the work yourself, or if you want to pay a professional to install your new gutters. Professional installation will ensure efficiency, versus doing it yourself.
Most homeowners are better off paying a little extra for labor, to ensure that the installation will be done correctly. Another bonus of hiring Gastonia Gutters Plus to install your gutters is that we are able to help you answer all your questions about gutters so that you find the perfect style and type.