The number one thing to consider when you are purchasing new gutters is, “Why?” This important question will help you answer 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 shopping for new rain gutters:
An Upgrade – Installing new gutters can drastically affect the appearance of your house, enhancing its look in a subtler way than painting or new landscaping.
A New Home – Designing a home comes with a constant stream of choices about both appearance and functionality. Gutters are no exception. Deciding on the gutters that go on your house is important because they should last at least 15 years or more.
A Renovation – If your home’s roof has experienced damage, the gutters might need to be replaced. Or, they may simply be getting too old and need to be replaced.
You will know why you are installing new gutters, but the reason often has underlying motivations…
You want to sell your home.
You want to renovate without spending too much money.
Your landscaping is being ruined by ineffective gutters.
Determining your “Why” will help to provide direction while you are shopping. You’ll know if certain features are must-haves or if you can choose a more affordable product.
Here are the questions you’ll need to ask when purchasing new gutters.
HOW TO CHOOSE GUTTER MATERIALS?
The best part about purchasing new gutters is choosing the materials. Gutters will blend in or stand out against your home exterior, depending on your personal preference.
These are the options you will have, in order of cost:
VINYL & PLASTIC GUTTERS
Vinyl and plastic are affordable options that hold up well in most cases, other than cold climates, where they will 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 mid-priced options are both attractive and durable. Both materials come in a variety of colors as well. They are fairly lightweight 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 rain gutter materials, copper and stainless steel cost the most, but are the most eye-catching as well. Homeowners in Memphis who choose these options are searching 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 these options:
SECTIONAL OR SEAMLESS GUTTERS
Sectional gutters – These gutters are made in smaller sections, so they’re easy to install. In fact, homeowners decide to install their own sectional gutters. This type is the more affordable choice, and they are made with more seams, which means more sections where leaks are going to occur.
Seamless gutters – Seamless gutters will need to be installed by a local contractor because they need special tools. They’re 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 almost any style of home. They are better for angled roofs, which are more common. This speaks to their popularity. In addition, they are not hard to install. Many homeowners are capable 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 prior to 1950, so they give homes a regal, classic curb appeal. However, more modern styles made from vinyl and plastic provide the best of both worlds, because they are both lightweight and functional. Half-Round 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 your region may determine a lot about which gutters you can have. As we already mentioned, some types of materials will not hold up in cold climates.
The single most important climate factor is how much work the gutters will need to do. In other words, how much rain or water are the gutters going to need to withstand?
Professional gutter installers in Memphis can take a lot of factors into consideration to determine the size and the type of gutters that will work best for your house.
WHAT IS THE FORMULA?
Luckily, the formula professional roofing 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 on the National Weather Service or the U.S. Weather Bureau website. You can also look into 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 simple length times width calculation for basic roofs. However, you have to factor in 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. Figuring out your roof-pitch factor will help you calculate 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 also want to consider the potential for ice dams forming on your roof. If it snows a lot in your city, you should seek professional guidance about the type of gutters that help to prevent ice dams from forming, which might severely damage your home’s 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 enlist the services of a professional to install your new gutters. Professional installation will ensure maximum efficiency, compared to doing it yourself.
Most homeowners should consider paying a little extra for professional labor, to ensure that the installation will be done correctly. An added bonus of hiring Memphis Gutters & More! to install the new gutters is that we will help you answer all of your questions about new gutters so that you are able to find the perfect style and type for your home.