Whether you’re building a new home, planning a major exterior renovation, or need to replace the gutters, there will be lots of things to figure out. Some decisions are easier than others. And when it comes to deciding on a gutter system, many homeowners can easily become overwhelmed. Choosing the best gutters for your home doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are some tips to help you find gutters that will protect your home and flatter your home’s exterior.
Check for any Laws or Restrictions
Before deciding on the color, style, material or installation method for your gutters, check for any municipal bylaws that might determine what is and is not allowed. It’s not just zoning laws or municipal bylaws that should be checked. If you live in a gated community or a designated historic area, consult any homeowners’ association guidelines before making final decisions regarding your gutter installation. You (and your wallet) won’t be happy if you have to start from square one.
Have a Budget and Stick to It
Make the gutter system fit what you can afford and not the other way around. Setting a budget will help you focus on what you want the gutters to look like and how much you are willing to pay to make that happen. This doesn’t mean you can’t have copper gutters – it just means you’ll have to shop around to find the best deal.
Aesthetics are Important
When a gutter system is chosen to complement a home exterior through the right style, color, shape, and size, gutters can actually improve your curb appeal. Aesthetics are important for a number of reasons including, feelings of general well-being, resale value, and fitting into the neighbourhood.
Gutter Material is Important
While gutter material plays an important role in overall aesthetics, it is important for other reasons as well. Popular gutter materials for residential homes are aluminum, copper, and vinyl. European copper gutters and zinc gutters are typical choices for higher-end dwellings. A gutter material should be long-lasting, suited to the climatic conditions of where you live, and easy to maintain.
How Much Rain?
A gutter system must be able to handle the amount of annual rainfall for your region. Local rainfall statistics typically determine the size of the gutters, the size of the downspouts, and the gutter material.
Go with Seamless Gutters
Seamless gutters are becoming a more popular choice with construction professionals and homeowners alike. Fabricated on-site from a metal coil, they are generally easier to maintain, stronger, and have fewer seams (fewer places for leaks to form). They boost curb appeal because they present a smooth run, uninterrupted by seams and the hangers needed to hold gutter sections in place.
Gutter System “Extras”
If you are hiring someone to do the gutter installation for you, a professional gutter installation company might offer add-ons or accessories designed to improve the functionality of your gutter system. Here are some examples of gutter system extras and the reasons you would want to add them.
Gutter guards: Gutter guards help to keep debris out while letting rainwater in. They reduce the number of times per year gutters need to be cleaned. Some kind of gutter protection system is worthwhile installing if you have a lot of trees growing near the house, reside in a neighbourhood with a lot of trees, or your home is situated in an industrial or agricultural community.
Downspout extenders: A downspout extender attaches to a downspout that is too close to the exterior wall or foundation, allowing it to direct and deposit rainwater a safe distance from the house. Downspout extenders also provide solutions for downpipes that cross driveways, paths, etc.
Splash blocks: Like a downspout extender, splash blocks guide water away from the foundation. Closed at one end (closest to the house) and open at the other, a splash block placed underneath a downspout diverts water while protecting the soil from oversaturation and/or erosion.