During the gutter-buying process, there are several factors a homeowner must consider in order to get the right gutter system for their home. The shape of the gutters or the gutter profile is one of those major decisions. For residential applications, K-style gutters are the most popular for several practical reasons.
There is a differing opinion on why they are called K-style. Majority rule claims it’s because the shape loosely mimics the letter K; others in the industry state it reflects back to when gutter profiles slowly became standardized in the 1970s. A range of channeled gutters that could be formed on factory or portable (on site) gutter machines were designated with letters of the alphabet: “K” became the most popular. Who knows? Both could be true.
When viewing the gutter from the side, starting from the bottom, the outer edge consists of a short, straight line, followed by two curves (opposing), then followed by another short straight line to form the top or lip of the gutter.
A K-style gutter system typically channels more water than some other gutter profile systems, including half-round.
Because the shape is comprised of multiple bends, it makes the metal stronger and more resistant to damage by impact.
K-style gutters, also known as OG (for Old Gothic) or ogee (meaning double curve), resemble the crown molding found on interior walls adjacent to the ceiling. While it might seem that a K-style gutter system would be better suited to traditional and heritage architectural style homes, just the opposite is true. In today’s market, where there are more material and colour choices, K-style gutters are able to complement a wide range of residential styles from Revival to Craftsman to Modern.
Choice of Materials
K-style gutters are available in a number of material choices, including aluminum, galvanized steel, and copper. K-style aluminum gutters are low maintenance, lightweight, and economical. A galvanized steel k-style gutters system is durable, strong and corrosion-resistant. Copper k-style gutters are long-lasting, beautiful to look at, and strong.
Regardless of what type of metal is chosen for the gutter system, there are definite advantages to K-style gutters. These include:
- channels more water per linear foot than other types of gutter profiles
- since it’s the most popular gutter profile, the seamless option is readily available
- versatile, classic shape that resembles crown moulding
- possesses a flat back, which makes it easier to attach directly to fascia