New Homeowner's Guide to Gutters
As a new homeowner, it is essential to have a functioning gutter system that can redirect the flow of rainwater away from the foundation of your home. If you don’t know much about gutter systems, read on to learn some basic information that every homeowner should know.
As mentioned above, gutters move the flow of storm water away from your home, helping to prevent water damage and keep your basement dry. Gutters are usually fixed below the edge of your roof. If your home doesn’t have them, this can cause a lot of issues to arise.
Rainfall that is not directed away from your house can pool and cause soil erosion, weakening your home's foundation. Excess water may also cause dampness in the walls of your home, leading to mildew or mold growth. If you live in a cold climate, having no gutters can cause ice dams and snow to build up and damage your roof. In a nutshell, gutters save your home from damage and expensive repairs.
What Type of Gutter is Best?
There are a few different kinds of gutters, and each one has its pros and cons. If you want to have your gutters professionally installed, the most common type professionals use is made from aluminum. However, gutters also come in steel, copper, galvalume, vinyl, and zinc, and we’ll go over their descriptions here.
Aluminum gutters are corrosion-resistant, lightweight, and inexpensive. These are the most commonly used type of gutters. While thinner aluminum gutters tend to bend or dent, you can also pay more for thicker aluminum.
Steel gutters are made from galvanized steel. They are more durable and slightly more expensive than aluminum. However, steel gutters can also rust.
Copper gutters are very durable and can last through extreme weather conditions. However, they are also the priciest type of rain gutter.
Galvalume gutters are made of steel and have a coating of zinc and aluminum. These types of gutters are seamless, strong, and durable. While galvalume gutters are long-lasting, they are also more expensive.
Vinyl gutters are the least expensive type. However, vinyl is the least durable gutter material and can become damaged in extreme climates.
Zinc gutters do not need to be painted and last a long time. They also won’t rust and don’t require as much maintenance. However, zinc gutters are typically more expensive.
Maintaining Your Gutter System
The main goal is to have your gutters functioning properly. However, without regular maintenance, they can become easily clogged with debris. Make sure to clean your gutters at least twice per year, in the fall and spring, to remove leaves, twigs, pine needles, and other debris.
If your gutters are straight, solid, and not leaking, this likely means that they are functioning optimally. While aluminum, steel, and copper gutters can be repaired if they start leaking, vinyl gutters will need to be replaced entirely.
For gutters to work properly, they must always remain clear and free flowing. By installing gutter guards, you can extend the life of your gutters, improve water flow, and prevent blockages and damage to your foundation. In addition, gutter guards can save you time and money by reducing the number of gutter cleanings needed.
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