Why savvy homeowners choose aluminum gutters
Installing new gutters or replacing old ones can make a huge difference in the way your property handles water runoff during wet seasons. Gutters provide a system to collect and transport storm runoff away from your home, instead of letting it pour off the roof and pool around your home's foundation. Standing water can damage any structure over time, as well as lead to mold and mildew. Though gutters don't make as much sense for homes in arid Arizona, they are crucial for homes in wet climates like Washington. Wet, snowy climates make gutters essential for redirecting snowmelt from the roof, away from walkways where it can freeze and form a dangerous layer of ice.
Aluminum gutters the popular choice
Continuous aluminum gutters are one of the most popular types of gutters for a number of reasons: They are light and don't require special costly attachments, and they are resistant to rust and corrosion. Continuous aluminum gutters are made from sheets of aluminum that are formed into lengths to match sections of your home's roof. Since these type of gutters don't have any seams, they are not prone to leaks. The only tie-in points are at corners and at downspouts. Other gutter materials, including vinyl, plastic, galvanized steel, wood and copper are also popular, but some are more costly while others are less durable than aluminum.
Popular gutter styles and colors
Two of the most popular styles are a K-style profile and a half-rounded profile.The K-style gutter, which is the most prevalent type of gutter on homes in North America, mimics the older ogee profile gutters. Common sizes are 5-inch or 6-inch widths, but larger sizes are available as well. Manufacturers sell both styles of gutters with a baked-on enamel finish in a wide variety of colors to match or accent your home's color scheme.
Continuous aluminum gutters can be installed from around $9 to $12 per linear foot. Wood and copper gutters, though beautiful, can cost as much as $30 and $40 per linear foot depending on type of wood used and the complexity of the gutter. Vinyl and plastic gutters are much cheaper and are a favorite of do-it-yourselfers, but they still can cost between $3 to $5 a linear foot. These products also can deteriorate more quickly than other types of gutter materials in excessive heat or cold. Galvanized steel gutters can cost between $4 and $8 a linear foot, but many contractors have found that the steel is more susceptible to rust than aluminum. Aluminum gutters have become the most popular gutters sold today because of their modest price point and longevity.
Roofing contractors and gutter installers suggest buying thicker-gauge aluminum gutters since the heavier material stands the test of time much better than thinner aluminum. Expect to pay slightly more, but the extra cost should take care of itself through the extended life of the gutter.
Continuous aluminum gutters are usually installed by an experienced contractor. If you are ready to get started, the form on this page can help you find contractors who can assess your needs and provide you with quotes for a new gutter system.