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28 Jun 2017
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Types of Gutters: Aluminum, Vinyl, Steel and Copper

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Posted By Freddy F.

The four most popular residential gutter types are: aluminum, vinyl, steel and copper.

Aluminum Gutters

Aluminum gutters are the most popular type of gutters. About 80% of gutters in the US are made of aluminum.

Price:
* $4-$8 per linear foot

Advantages:
* Rust resistant
* No painting necessary
* Vast color and finish options

Disadvantages:
* Could get dented by a ladder or heavy branch

Tips:

Aluminum gutters are sold in 5- or 6- inch varieties. 5 inch is the standard. However, a 6- inch gutter can handle more water and can prevent overflowing. If you live in a region with heavy rains, consider the 6-inch gutter. Aluminum gutters are sold according to thickness. Medium thickness is .027" and a heavier weight gutter is .032". The thicker or heavier gutter prevents warping caused by ice and snow.

Vinyl Gutters

Vinyl gutters have many of the same characteristics as aluminum gutters.

Price:
* $3-$5 per linear foot

Advantages:

* Simple installation - Vinyl is lightweight and easy to cut. The installation of vinyl gutters takes less time than aluminum gutters.
* Dent resistant
* Rust resistant
* Maintains color well
* No need to paint

Disadvantages:

* Extreme heat causes vinyl gutters to warp.

Tips:

If you are considering vinyl gutters for your home, you may be able to install them on your own. Some vinyl gutters are sold in pre-cut sections and are simple for an experienced DIYer to install.

Steel Gutters

Steel gutters, also known as galvanized steel gutters, are the most durable gutter type. They are used by homeowners in storm prone areas.

Price:

* $4-$8 per linear foot

Advantages:

* Most steel gutters are formulated with a coating to resist rust.
* No warping
* Resists all kinds of damage. According to Arizona Seamless Gutters, "The tensile strength of steel is 50,000 psi while aluminum's tensile strength is 22,000 psi."
* Available in many colors

Disadvantages:

* Some galvanized finishes have a limited life span of 5-10 years. Choose a high- quality gutter from a reliable source to avoid a limited lifespan.

Tips:

* Hire an experienced and licensed gutter installer to ensure that your steel gutters are properly installed.

Copper Gutters

Copper gutters add curb appeal and can increase the value of a home. They are the most expensive of all gutter types.

Price:

* $15-$25 per linear foot

Advantages:

* Durable
* Long Lasting
* Rust resistant
* Rot resistant
* Minimum maintenance

Disadvantages:

* Copper oxidizes, causing a green appearance. This can be prevented by applying a sealant against oxidization
* Expensive

Tips:

Copper gutters are beautiful and complement metal roofs. Find a reliable gutter installer who has experience installing copper gutters.

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