Different Types of Gutter Systems
Other possibilities that might be found on an existing home would include:
-- Wood, but wood gutters are rare, except for restoration work.
They're also expensive, starting at about $12 per linear foot installed and, depending on the wood species, running as high as $20 per linear foot. The original wood gutters were made from old growth cedar, a product that is rarely available today. Its substitution with new growth cedar or hemlock gutters has proven inadequate.
--Copper is usually reserved for classic restorations.
It's handsome, never rusts and never needs painting. But it's also expensive. Copper gutters are good to have for many reasons including the fact that they will never rust or rot away. It also adds a sense of visual appeal. They also add value to your home and require less maintenance than aluminum or other materials. However, even copper has its issue. Copper gutters will oxidize and turn green over time unless they are treated. There are several sealants available that can be applied to keep copper gutters looking golden and shiny.
-- Steel gutters can stand up to ladders and fallen branches better than
But even thick galvanized steel eventually rusts through and need to be painted, inside and out. Stainless-steel gutters are strong and rust-free, and maintain their high sheen for years. But, like copper, stainless steel is expensive.
--Vinyl gutter is a commonly used material, often sold in do-it-yourself
It is easily installed by the homeowner. It can be susceptible to damage
by heavy ladders, as well as long-term deterioration by ultraviolet light from
the sun. Quality vinyl gutters retain their color; remain flexible; are relatively
easy to repair or replace; don't rust or corrode; have a greater dent resistance
than lightweight aluminum and can be painted, if desired. Conversely, parts of
the country with hot sunny temperatures and conditions will destroy vinyl guttering
in short order. The gutter will crack under the harsh conditions and break apart.
Heavy amounts of rain can cause the material to bend and bow. Even a ladder put
up against them can create serious issues.
Half round style gutters with round downspouts found on many turn of the century
homes enable water to flow very effectively but they must be sized one inch
larger than K styles to handle the same capacity. Half-round gutters are typically
sized 1 inch wider than K-style to provide the equivalent capacity. Hence, 6-inch
half-round gutters are equivalent to 5-inch K-style.
The integral gutter was a popular gutter style in the 1960's.
The end of the rafters and fascia on a sloped roof forms this system. The gutter is lined with a built-up roofing material and is able to hold a great deal more water than most of the other types of gutters. The disadvantage of this gutter style is in the potential for leaks, which can result in damage to the framing, fascia, soffit, and sheathing of the roof. The lining must be replaced or repaired every five to ten years.
--Box gutters can be found on older homes, multi-family dwellings, old stores,
They were by and large one of the most popular rain collection
devices built into and onto structures built between 1880 and 1925. A box gutter
does not hang onto the edge of a roof or on the edge or side of a house as many
modern pre-formed gutters do. A box gutter is actually built into the bottom
of the roof or into the roof overhang. The 7" Box Gutter profile is designed
for use in commercial and light industrial applications where an attractive,
yet functional, rain carrying system is required.
The large 7" trough is capable of handling high volumes of water that are typically found draining from larger commercial roof installations. This profile can be found up to an .040" thick painted aluminum or 24 gauge painted steel in long unbroken lengths. Depending on local rain fall calculations you can drain the 7" box gutter system with either heavy duty 3" x 4" downspouts or heavy duty 4" x 5" down-spouts supplied in the same color as the gutter or field sprayed to match. The 7" Box
Gutter is available in a straight or flange back style. Section splice plates,
end caps and corners are usually custom fabricated of the same material and finish
as that of the gutter.
A fascia gutter
is a rainware system that is fixed to a fascia board. It is often a custom made rainwater gutter that is fixed to the ends of the rafters and also performs the function of a fascia board. It is most commonly found in the Western part of the United States.