How to Find the Best Rain Gutters
Have your gutters started leaking or are they looking worn down? It may be time to consider getting a new gutter system installed at your property to make sure everything is working as it should. Looking at the gutter market today may seem overwhelming with all the different options available to you. If so, don’t worry! Read on to learn about the most common types of gutters and know what you should keep in mind while looking for new gutters!
A Look at Different Types of Gutters
While there are certainly several options to choose from when you are in the market for new gutters, there are three main types of gutters available: aluminum, copper, and zinc. Each material will come with its own sets of pros and cons so continue reading to learn more about each gutter type.
The most popular type of gutter is aluminum, with nearly 4 out of every 5 homes in the United States being fitted with aluminum gutters. There are a number of different reasons that contribute to the popularity of aluminum gutters. Some of the main attributes of aluminum gutters include:
- Lightweight — aluminum is an incredibly lightweight metal, making it ideal for gutter installation as it’s easier to maneuver than a heavy material.
- Durability – aluminum stands up to the elements quite well and can last 15-20 years. It is also a rust-free material, unlike other ferrous metals such as steel.
- Customizable — aluminum can be customized in terms of gauge/thickness, making it a great option when designing a custom gutter system for your home.
The use of copper gutters has been gaining popularity in recent years, as people have started to use them not only due to their incredible performance but also how they can be used to make your home more aesthetically pleasing. Some of the main things to consider about copper rain gutters include:
- Long-lasting — Copper gutter systems can last for 60-100 years when they’re properly maintained.
- Styling — copper gutters can be used as a design feature of your home and can look gorgeous on the right homes, but it does not look great with every style. Keep that in mind when looking at gutters.
- Cost — copper gutter cost is significantly higher than other types of gutters, but it does also last significantly longer.
A material that is less commonly used for gutter systems in the US is zinc. Due to a variety of different reasons, zinc rain gutters should still be considered when you’re narrowing it down to your shortlist of best gutters. A few things to keep in mind about zinc gutters include:
- Durability — zinc is a non-ferrous metal, so it won’t corrode or rust as other ferrous materials will.
- Color choices — zinc rain gutters can be customized to match the decor of your home to add to the design.
- Affordable — zinc is cheaper than copper and it lasts nearly as long, making it a great option.
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Rain Gutters
Now that you know a bit more about some of the most common types of gutters out there, there are two main things you’ll want to keep in mind when you’re shopping for the best rain gutters available — dimensions and cost.
Rain Gutter Dimensions
The vast majority of people probably don’t know that gutters come in different sizes and more than likely don’t know the dimensions of the gutters on their own home. While it isn’t really something that presses on the minds of most people, you should think about it when you’re looking to find the best gutters you can.
The two most common rain gutter dimensions are 5” and 6”, referring to the size of the channel where water will be flowing as it drains. The size matters because a bigger gutter will be able to effectively drain more water than a smaller gutter. Makes sense, right? That doesn’t necessarily mean you need to opt for the 6” gutter every time, however.
The fact is, a 5” gutter system will work for most residential applications. But if your home or business has a steep roof pitch or a large surface area, the 6” will offer the best performance. As long as you’ve hired a professional gutter contractor, this should be a question that they should be able to answer for you quickly and honestly.
Cost of Different Gutter Types
Next is the big one — cost. Installing a full gutter system on your property is not a cheap project, but it is a necessary one that you’ll want to be done right. While companies will of course have different pricing than one another, the single biggest reason for different prices is the choice of material.
Of the three types of gutters looked at here, aluminum is the most affordable option at $5-$10 per linear foot; this is probably a big reason why it is the most popular option in the US by far. Zinc comes in as the second most affordable option on this list at $15-$20 per linear foot. Lastly, the most expensive option here is copper, which will cost you around $25-$30 per linear foot. Just keep in mind that copper and zinc will last 2, 3, even 4 times longer than aluminum will.
The Best Rain Gutters Differ from Person to Person
With everything considered, choosing the best rain gutters will differ from person to person. Depending on your budget, the styling of your home, and how long you want to expect the gutters to last, any of these three options could be perfect for you. If you want an affordable option, go with aluminum — there’s a reason 80% of people make that decision. If you want something that’s going to last 50 years or more, you might want to look into copper or zinc.
No matter the choice you make, just be sure you’ve kept all these things in mind and hired a great gutter contractor to install the perfect system for you!