Like all home improvement projects, gutter installation requires careful planning. When you cover all the necessary bases, getting the most out of your investment is easier. You should, for instance, choose whether to get a seamless or sectional gutter system. This decision can make a big difference in how long and how well your new gutters perform.
Sectional or Seamless?
The most common gutter option available is sectional systems, which are sold in separate pieces and segments. They are then installed together along the entire length of the roof, with each piece connected by sealants. Sectional gutters are designed to allow for mass production of segments because they can be cut and sealed together, allowing them to fit any home, no matter the roofline or size.
Seamless gutters, on the other hand, are molded and installed using just one piece of metal. They don’t come in segments, so they have fewer seams–only around the corners. For the most part, seamless gutters provide a straight, continuous trough from one end to the other.
Material Options for Seamless Gutters
Once you’ve decided to go seamless, it’s time to pick which material offers better durability and weather resistance. Some of the more popular materials include:
- Aluminum. Cost-effective, rust-resistant and comes in a wide range of colors. There are even color choices that emulate the look of aged copper or zinc. With proper installation and maintenance by a pro, aluminum seamless gutters can last up to 25 years.
- Steel. Available as galvanized, stainless or galvalume. Seamless gutters made of this material are resistant to rust but their lifespan will depend on your choice of steel.
- Zinc. Durable and rust-proof, zinc aluminum gutters weather to a lovely matte gray over time.
- Copper. A premium choice especially for historic homes, copper seamless gutters will never rust or fade. This means they don’t require painting, lasting for a century in any climate.
Style Choices for Seamless Gutters
Seamless gutters come in different styles, making it easy to improve upon your home’s overall appearance. These include:
- Half Round. This style is usually associated with upscale homes, but the advent of aluminum systems has allowed it to fit every budget. Half round gutters are timeless and elegant, but also efficient. Because of their open design, with hangers on the outside, they let water and loose debris flow more freely through the system. Their curved shape fills the gutter with water deeper, allowing them to be cleaned out much easier.
- 5-Inch K-Style. A favorite option among many homeowners, 5-inch K-style gutters are both cost-effective and high-functioning. They have a unique shape that resembles crown molding, allowing them to blend beautifully with your home’s exterior and highlight your property.
- 6-Inch K-Style. They look similar to 5-inch options, but 6-inch K-style gutters are on another level. They handle nearly twice the volume of water as their 5-inch counterparts while covering up more of the fascia.
When it comes to superior performance and good looks, seamless gutters have you covered. Just make sure to have them installed by a reputable gutter contractor to guarantee best results.