Basic Types of Gutters

Basic Types of Gutters

Posted by: Amanda White, Jan, 29, 2019

Basic Types of Gutters

Let’s start with shapes. There are two basic types, and they’re referred to by the shape of their cross section. Both types come 5-6-and 7-inch widths.

1.  K-style gutters have flat bottoms and backs, and the front side of the gutter usually has a decorative shape, such as a curve or ogee, that mimics crown molding. Many styles are available.

2.  Half-round gutters are exactly what the name suggests: half-round tubes. Half-round gutters often are found on older, historic homes.

In general, K-style gutters have twice the capacity of their half-round cousins of the same width, and cost up to 50% more per linear foot.

Gutter Materials

Residential gutters are made from various metals, including:

Aluminum

-Most widely used material

-Won’t rust

 

Seamless Aluminum

Seamless (or continuous) gutters are made at the job site. A truck with a spool of flat aluminum pulls up to your home, and the fabricator uses a gutter-forming machine to custom make whatever gutter length is required. There’s no hauling of long gutters. About 70% of all gutter installations are the seamless type.

Installing seamless gutters:

-Eliminates many seams and reduces chances of leaks

-Costs slightly more than regular aluminum gutters

 

Copper

-Exceptional beauty

-Won’t rust

-No need to paint; will develop a patina over time

-Needs pro installation; seams and joints must be welded

-Used primarily on high-end residences and historic restorations

-Pricey

 

Steel

-Strong

-Galvanized steel resists rust but longevity is an issue; may start to rust after 5 to 10 years

-Many color options; can be painted

-Can be pricey

 

Vinyl

-Lightweight and inexpensive

-Not many colors to choose from

-Color susceptible to fading from UV sunlight

-May crack in severe cold

-Won’t support ladders placed against them

 

Zinc

-Durable and long-lasting

-No need to paint; will develop a patina over time

-Needs pro installation; seams and joints must be welded

-Used primarily on high-end residences and historic restorations

-Expensive

 

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