Installing new gutters on your home? One of the most important decisions to make is what material you want to use for your gutters. There are various options that are commonly used, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. So, let’s look at some of these to help you make the right decision for your home.
Vinyl is a lightweight option, is easy to install, and also tends to be the cheapest option. But it’s a trade-off between lower costs and lower durability. Being plastic rather than metal means it won’t become rusted or corroded, but it is a weaker material and can crack or become damaged more easily. It is prone to wear due to weather, however, becoming more brittle in the heat and faded in the sunlight. Despite not being as long-lasting as other materials, vinyl gutters can still last around 20 years in temperate climates.
Aluminum is also lightweight and easy to install, but offers a little more durability and weather-resistance than vinyl, often making it the most popular option. Aluminum doesn’t rust, but it can become dented or bent, especially if you choose a thinner material. Aluminum gutters can last a little longer than vinyl, up to 25 years on average.
Steel is a heavier metal than aluminum, which can also make it harder to install, but it is stronger and more durable in turn. They are generally weather-resistant, but steel is prone to rusting when exposed to water. There are two options to fight rust and corrosion; galvanized steel gutters offer some level of protection against rust and oxidation, while stainless steel gutters will not rust but are considerably more expensive.
If you’re looking for a rustic or high-end aesthetic, then copper is a great option, but it’s also an expensive one. It’s extremely weather-resistant, including against rust, and can last up to 100 years when installed and cared for properly. While the shining reddish-brown color can look very attractive, this will fade to a greenish color over time (like the Statue of Liberty).
Zinc is another durable option, lasting up to 50 years. Again, this is typically only used on high-end homes, with prices slightly less than those of copper, but it can produce an extremely attractive aesthetic. They are generally weather-resistant, although they may not be suitable for coastal regions as salty air can cause them to wear.
Believe it or not, wood used to be the most common material used for gutters. As you might expect, wood gutters are prone to rotting and water damage, meaning they degrade much quicker than the other options listed here. While they may look nice, wood gutters are rarely installed anymore due to this, although you might still see them on some older homes.
Whichever material is right for your home, contact Artisan Roofing Company for professional gutter installation around Greensboro, Winston Salem, Clemmons, Kernersville, and Lewisville, NC.