The number one thing to consider when you are shopping for new gutters is, “Why?” This question will help to answer most of the questions you’ll have before making your final selection.
In our experience as a local gutter service, here are only three reasons homeowners will be in the market for new gutters:
An Upgrade – Installing new rain gutters can drastically affect the curb appeal of your house, improving its look in a subtler way than painting or new landscaping.
A New House – Building a home comes with a lot of of choices about both appearance and functionality. Gutters included. Deciding on the gutters that go on your home is important because they should last at least 20 years.
A Renovation – If your roof has had damage, the gutters may need to be replaced. Or, they could just be wearing down and need to be replaced with new ones.
You obviously know why you are installing new rain gutters on your home, 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 getting ruined by ineffective gutters.
Determining your “Why” will give you direction while you are shopping. You’ll know what features are must-haves or if you can choose a less expensive product.
Here are the major questions you’ll want to consider when it’s time to purchase new gutters.
HOW TO CHOOSE GUTTER MATERIALS?
The fun part of installing new rain gutters is choosing the style. Gutters will blend in or stand out against your house, depending on your preference.
These are the options you will have, in order of lowest to highest cost:
VINYL & PLASTIC GUTTERS
Vinyl and plastic are economical materials that are durable in most cases, besides extremely cold climates, where they can wear down. Vinyl and plastic gutters are efficient in nearly every region of the country, and they are available in a wide range of colors.
METAL & ALUMINUM GUTTERS
These reasonably priced options are stylish and durable. Both materials are available in a variety of colors too. They are fairly light and are not hard 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 available, copper and stainless steel cost the most, but the most attractive as well. Homeowners in Salt Lake City who decide on these materials are looking for an elegant touch, and that’s what they’ll get!
WHAT ARE IMPORTANT GUTTER FEATURES?
Almost all of the gutter types above will offer both of these options:
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 sections where leaks can occur.
Seamless gutters – Seamless gutters should be installed by a local contractor because they require specialized tools. They’re more expensive to purchase 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 excellent with every style of home. They are 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 usually made of copper and steel, and they are best for rounded roofs, popular before 1950, so they give homes a luxurious, classic curb appeal. However, modern styles made from vinyl and plastic offer the best of both worlds, being both lightweight and highly functional. Half-Round rain gutters are much harder to install, but much easier to clean out, when it’s time for gutter cleaning.
DOES CLIMATE AFFECT GUTTERS?
The climate of the city you live in will dictate a lot about what gutters you should install. Like we already 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 need to do. In other words, how much water are the gutters going to need to withstand?
Professional gutter contractors in Salt Lake City can take a lot of factors into consideration to determine the size and type of rain gutters that will work the best for your house.
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 is available online on the National Weather Service or the U.S. Weather Bureau website. You should also look into the maximum rainfall intensity for the city you live in. This is the maximum amount of rain that can happen within a 5-minute span.
Roof Square Footage – Square footage is a simple length times width calculation for basic 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. Determining your roof-pitch factor will 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 factored into average precipitation calculations, but you definitely want to be aware of the potential for ice dams. If it snows often in your city, you should seek professional guidance concerning the type of gutters that best prevent ice dams, which can really damage your home’s roof.
Of course, the final question is arguably the most important …
HOW TO INSTALL GUTTERS?
You also have to ask yourself if you’re willing to try to do the work on your own, or if you are going to pay a professional to install your gutters. Professional installation ensures maximum efficiency, compared to doing it yourself.
Most homeowners are better off paying a little extra for professional labor, to ensure that the job will be done right. Another bonus of hiring SLC Gutter Solutions to install the gutters is that we are able to help you answer all of your questions about new gutters so that you find the best style and type for your home.