Whether you decide to DIY or hire a contractor, it’s important to do some homework before buying gutters for your home. Doing research not only will help you find the best deal, the process will also help you determine what you need (a gutter system that can handle a lot of water and withstand wind storms) versus what you want (copper gutters because they look elegant) and can afford. The more specific you are, the easier it will be to make the decisions needed to choose a gutter system that is long-lasting, made of quality materials and falls within your budget.
Shape or Profile
K-style (also known as Colonial) gutters are the most common shape or profile chosen for gutter systems in North America. Other popular gutter profiles include half-round, crown mould gutters and two step gutters. The gutter’s shape or profile can optimize the appearance or curb appeal of a home.
Guttering can be made from a variety of materials, from metals such as copper, aluminum and stainless steel to plastics including vinyl. Aluminum seamless gutters are popular with homeowners because they are lightweight, rust-resistant and cost-effective.
Gutters are typically mounted to the fascia or roof trim of your home. Hangers, clips or nails are used to keep the sections of gutter in place. Hangers or clips can be hidden or visible.
A gutter system includes a downpipe to drain the water from the roof and deposit it safely away from the foundation. Will you need just one or two or more?
How thick should the gutter material be? Whether you select aluminum, copper or vinyl, thickness will be the contributing factor to the durability and strength of your gutters.
If you live in a house with lots of trees on your property or nearby, consider purchasing some kind of gutter protector system and have it installed at the same time.
What is Included?
When looking for a contractor, get at least three estimates. This will give you an idea of what is available and how much it will cost. You should also confirm what is included and what is not. Be clear about things like how many hangers are going to be used to install your gutter system or how the downpipes will be installed and sealed.