The very first thing to ask yourself when you are purchasing new gutters is, “Why?” This important question will help you answer the subsequent questions you’ll have before purchasing your final selection.
In our experience as a local gutter service, here are three reasons homeowners might be shopping for new rain gutters:
An Upgrade – Installing new rain gutters can drastically affect the exterior style of your house, enhancing its look in a subtler way than painting or landscaping.
A New House – Designing a home comes with a constant stream of decisions about both appearance and functionality. Rain gutters included. Choosing the gutters that go on your house is important because they should last approximately 15 years.
A Renovation – If the roof on your home been damaged, the gutters may have to be replaced, too. Or, they could just be deteriorating and need to be replaced with new ones.
You will 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 a lot of 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 which features are must-haves or if you can go with a more affordable product.
Here are the questions you’ll have when purchasing new gutters.
HOW TO CHOOSE GUTTER MATERIALS?
The fun part about choosing new rain gutters is picking out the style. Gutters can blend in or stand out against your home exterior, depending on your personal preference.
These are the choices for materials, in order of lowest to highest cost:
VINYL & PLASTIC GUTTERS
Vinyl and plastic are affordable materials that hold up well in most cases, besides extremely cold climates, where they will deteriorate. Vinyl and plastic gutters are sufficient in most regions of the country, and they come in a wide range of colors.
METAL & ALUMINUM GUTTERS
These mid-priced materials are both attractive and durable. Both of these materials come in a variety of colors too. They are fairly light and are easy 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 gutter materials available, copper and stainless steel cost the most, but are the most attractive as well. Homeowners in Wilmington who choose these materials are looking for an elegant touch, and that’s what they’ll get!
WHAT ARE IMPORTANT GUTTER FEATURES?
Most of the gutter options above offer these options:
SECTIONAL OR SEAMLESS GUTTERS
Sectional gutters – These types of gutters are made in smaller sections, so they’re easy to install. In fact, most homeowners choose to install their own sectional gutters on their own. This type is the more affordable choice, and they have more seams, which means there are more areas where leaks can occur.
Seamless gutters – Seamless gutters should be installed by a local contractor because they require specialized tools. They are more expensive to buy and to install, but they are less likely to leak or wear down 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 one of the reasons for their popularity. In addition, they are easy to install. Most homeowners are capable enough to install their own K-Style gutters.
Half-Round – Half-Round gutters are traditionally made of copper and steel, and they complement rounded roofs, popular before 1950, so they give homes a luxurious, classic curb appeal. However, more modern styles made from vinyl and plastic offer the best of both worlds, being both lightweight and highly functional. Half-Round rain gutters are harder to install, but they are easier to clean, when the time comes for gutter cleaning.
DOES CLIMATE AFFECT GUTTERS?
The climate of your region may dictate a lot about what gutters you should install. Like we mentioned, certain types of materials will not hold up well in extremely cold climates.
The single most important climate factor to think about is how much work the gutters will have to do. Essentially, how much water are your gutters going to need to withstand?
Professional gutter companies in Wilmington are going to take several factors into consideration to get a good idea of the size and type of gutters that will work best for your house.
WHAT IS THE FORMULA?
Luckily, the formula professional gutter 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 weather statistic can be found online on the National Weather Service or the U.S. Weather Bureau website. You can also check the maximum rainfall intensity for the city you live in. This is the max amount of rain that will occur within a 5-minute span.
Roof Square Footage – Square footage is a standard length times width calculation for standard roofs. But, 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 roof that is less sloped. Knowing your roof-pitch factor will help to calculate how much rainfall will be collected, regardless of the rainfall statistics found online.
DOES IT SNOW WHERE YOU LIVE?
Snowfall is factored into average precipitation calculations, but you definitely want to be aware of the potential for ice dams forming on your roof. If it snows often in your state, you need to seek professional guidance concerning the type of gutters that help to prevent ice dams, which could really damage your home’s roof.
Of course, the final question is probably the most important …
HOW TO INSTALL GUTTERS?
You also have 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 efficiency, instead of doing it yourself.
Most homeowners are better off paying a little extra for labor, to ensure that the job will be done right. Another bonus of hiring WeClean Wilmington Gutters to install your new gutters is that we will help you answer all your questions about gutters so that you find the perfect style and type for your home.