The very first thing to ask yourself when you are purchasing new gutters is, “Why?” This important question will help to answer most of the subsequent questions you’ll have before purchasing your ultimate selection.
In our experience as a local gutter service, here are three reasons homeowners might be in the market for new gutters:
An Upgrade – Switching out the gutters can drastically impact the exterior style of your house, increasing its look in a subtler way than painting or landscaping.
A New House – Designing a new home comes with a constant stream of choices about both appearance and functionality. Gutters are one of them. Choosing the first gutters that go on your house is important because they will need to last at least 20 years.
A Renovation – If your roof is damaged, the gutters might need to be replaced, too. Or, they might just be deteriorating and need to be replaced.
You know why you are installing new gutters on your home, but the reason usually has underlying motivations…
You want to sell your house.
You want to renovate but not spend too much money.
Your landscaping is being damaged by ineffective gutters.
Figuring out your “Why” will provide direction while you are shopping. You’ll know what features are worth spending money on or if you can go with a more affordable product.
Here are the major questions you’ll have when it’s time to purchase new gutters.
HOW TO CHOOSE GUTTER MATERIALS?
The fun part about installing new gutters is picking out the materials. Gutters will blend in or stand out against your home exterior, depending on your personal preference.
These are the choices you will have, in order of lowest to highest cost:
VINYL & PLASTIC GUTTERS
Vinyl and plastic are affordable choices that are durable in most cases, except in cold climates, where they will wear down. Vinyl and plastic gutters are acceptable in almost every region of the country, and they are available in a wide variety of colors.
METAL & ALUMINUM GUTTERS
These mid-priced materials are both stylish and durable. Both of these materials are available in a wide range of colors too. They are fairly lightweight and easy to install. Galvanized metals (coated with zinc to protect them) fend off rust and corrosion even better.
COPPER & STAINLESS STEEL GUTTERS
Of all the gutter materials, copper and stainless steel are the most expensive, but the most eye-catching as well. Homeowners in East Orange who purchase these materials are looking for an elegant touch, and that’s just what they’ll get!
WHAT ARE IMPORTANT GUTTER FEATURES?
Most of the gutter materials above will offer these options below:
SECTIONAL OR SEAMLESS GUTTERS
Sectional gutters – These gutters come in smaller sections, so they’re easier to install. In fact, most homeowners choose to install their own sectional gutters on their own. This type is the less expensive choice, and they have more seams, which means more areas where leaks can occur.
Seamless gutters – Seamless gutters will need to be installed by a professional contractor because they need specialized equipment. They are more expensive to purchase and install, but they are less likely to leak than sectional gutters.
K-STYLE OR HALF-ROUND GUTTERS
K-Style – K-Style gutters are popular because they look excellent with every style of home. They’re better for angled roofs, which are far more common. This one of the reasons for their popularity. Plus, 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 recommended for rounded roofs, popular before 1950, so they give homes a luxurious, classic 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 a lot harder to install, but easier to clean, when the time comes for gutter cleaning.
DOES CLIMATE AFFECT GUTTERS?
The climate of the region you live in may determine a lot about which gutters you can have. Like we mentioned, some materials will not hold up well in extremely cold climates.
The single most important climate factor to consider is how much work the gutters will need to do. Basically, how much water are your gutters going to need to withstand?
Professional gutter installers in East Orange will take several factors into account to get a good idea of the size and type of gutters that are going to work best for your home.
WHAT IS THE FORMULA?
Luckily, the formula professional 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 find the maximum rainfall intensity for the city you live in. This is the max amount of rain that occurs within a 5-minute span.
Roof Square Footage – Square footage is a standard length times width calculation for basic roofs. However, you will have to figure all the surfaces of multi-faceted roofs.
Roof-Pitch Factor – A roof that is steep will collect more wind-blown rain than a roof that is less sloped. Knowing your roof-pitch factor will help to determine how much rainfall will be collected, regardless of the rainfall statistics found online.
DOES IT SNOW WHERE YOU LIVE?
Snowfall is going to be included in precipitation calculations, but you definitely want to be aware of the potential for ice dams forming on your roof. If it snows regularly in your state, you need to seek professional guidance concerning the type of rain gutters that help to prevent ice dams from forming, which can severely damage your roof.
Of course, the last question is probably the most important …
HOW TO INSTALL GUTTERS?
You also need to ask yourself if you’re going to do the work on your own, or if you are going to hire a professional to install your gutters. Professional installation will ensure efficiency, instead of doing it yourself.
Most homeowners should consider paying a little extra for labor, knowing that the installation will be done correctly. An added bonus of hiring EO Gutters, Inc. to install the new gutters is that we can help you answer all of your questions about gutters so that you find the perfect style and type.