Vinyl gutters popular choice for price and simplicity
An ideal home improvement project is likely inexpensive, easy, quick, and low mainetance. Installing new vinyl gutters meets those ideals, along with being resistant to denting and chipping, and with the added bonus of lasting for years with no rust, rot or corrosion.
Gutters, an all-important home necessity, control water run-off from the roof, keeping it away from the foundation and out of the basement. Vinyl gutters generally aren't affected by weather because they expand and contract as the temperature changes. They can be an excellent option for most climates, although locations with extreme temperatures are not recommended.
Vinyl gutter materials, styles and colors
Made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), vinyl gutters are durable, flexible, weather-resistant and the least expensive gutter option. They're available in U or half-round, and K profiles at 4, 5 and 6 inches. Downspouts are available in 2-by-3 inch and 3-by-4-inch rectangular, or 3- and 4-inch-round styles. The most common type is the 5-inch K gutter. The larger the downspout, the less likely they are to clog.
DIY vinyl gutter sections (usually 10 foot) have seams and are glued or snapped together using special connectors. Seamless vinyl gutter systems, with seams only at the corners, are also available but are not as common and cost considerably more. They must be installed on site by a professional.
Vinyl gutters usually come in brown or white. Color is added during the manufacturing process, but you can paint vinyl gutters using paint specifically formulated for vinyl. If painting isn't your thing, consider that white vinyl tends to hold up better in intense sun.
Cost estimates and top-selling brands for vinyl gutters
DIY and home improvement expert Don Vandevort estimates that by the time you add couplings, hangers, downspouts, end caps, corner pieces and drop outlets, the cost for vinyl gutters is about $3 to $5 per linear foot, installed.
Vandevort also suggests adding some kind of covering over the gutters to help keep debris out. Options include total covers, screens--from expensive micro-mesh to cheaper plastic or aluminum netting--hinged or snap-in perforated covers, and foam or brush gutter inserts. He estimates that simple DIY screening costs about $.30 per linear foot. Professionally installed solid covers and fine mesh screening can run $20 to $30 per foot.
Cost varies depending on the brand you choose and where you buy. Consider these popular brands, sold at local home improvement stores:
- Genova Products, which offers RAINGO, a U-shaped gutter with snap together installation and REPLA K, a K-style gutter with PVC sealant for leak-proof connections. Genova is a top seller at Ace Hardware and can also be found at Lowe's in a limited selection.
- Amerimax Home Products Inc., which offers traditional and contemporary roof drainage systems, is a top seller at The Home Depot.
- Severe Weather is Lowe's own brand of vinyl gutters.
Different types of covers are better suited to different climates and roof types. Talk with a professional to determine which gutter cover is best for your home.
Filling out the form on this page will get you started finding a contractor who may be able to answer your questions and help you get your home improvement project under way.