Gutters are the long, narrow tubes typically installed within the edge of the roof of a home or a building. The gutters help reroute water that falls on the roof, funneling the water to the ground and away from the building’s foundation. Gutters help the building or home from becoming waterlogged — preventing leaks, wood rotting, and damage to the structure and surrounding landscape of the property.
Pros and Cons of Installing Gutters to Your Home
Without gutters, rain water will create a waterfall effect, causing strain on the roof and damaging it. Water is also not rerouted away from the foundation, causing soil to erode.
Some homeowners are wary about adding gutters to their home simple because gutters are hard to clean. Because the structure is left open to collect rain water, gutters could be clogged with leaves, debris, and insects that inhibit water from flowing to the right direction.
Gutters could also sustain damage from too much cold, it could sag when there’s too much weight, or it could pull away from the house entirely.
But all these problems can be fixed easily through twice-a-year maintenance. Depending on the weather condition in your area, we recommend installing gutter guards to prevent debris from clogging the water pathways and using gutters made for hardwearing materials so they don’t break easily.
Types of Home Gutters
Home gutters are made from various materials and it’s important that you choose the right one depending on the weather conditions in your local area.
Vinyl gutters are made from sturdy plastic. It’s ideal for places that do not get a lot of snow and ice. In cold weather, vinyl could crack easily; it’s prone to damage caused by hail, snow, and the cold. Depending on the thickness, vinyl gutters could last up to 10 years.
Steel gutters are very durable but because of the nature of its use, rust could develop over time, weakening the gutters. Steel gutters are also prone to sagging because steel is a heavy metal. Steel gutters could last up to 10 to 50 years, depending on the protective coating used on the steel gutter.
Aluminum gutters are extremely light; they don’t rust and are very durable. However, the light material makes it prone to unsightly dents.
Copper gutters are not only striking because of its color, they’re also sturdy and won’t develop rust. Over time, the copper color will develop into a rich patina. However, copper gutters are very expensive and they are prone to being stolen because it’s made from valuable metal.
Maintaining Home Gutters
While cleaning the gutters will no doubt take a lot of effort, doing so could help protect your property from all sorts of water damage.
We recommend starting your gutter maintenance during spring or summer. Using a hose to simulate rain, position the water to the gutter, and watch out for leaks. You can patch any holes with store-bought roofing cement.
Using a stable ladder, check for clogged areas in the gutter. Remove the debris and check if the water is flowing to the right path. For badly damaged gutters, we recommend calling a professional to fix the damage.