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Gutter Types

Seamless Gutters

Seamless gutters are crafted from a single, continuous piece of metal, often aluminum or copper. When deciding between seamless and sectional gutters, there are several advantages to opting for seamless systems.

 

One significant benefit is their strength and reliability, as the absence of seams enhances their structural integrity. This continuous design also significantly reduces the risk of leaks since most leaks occur at gutter joints. With seamless gutters, joints are minimized to corners only, preventing mold, rot, and water damage typically caused by leaks.

 

Additionally, seamless aluminum gutters come in a variety of colors, allowing you to match or complement your home’s trim or exterior. The practical advantage of seamless systems is their low maintenance and long lifespan. With fewer joints and no risk of rust, they require minimal upkeep.

 

Seamless gutters are often cut on-site from a single coil, complicating DIY installation, particularly with longer runs. However, hiring an experienced gutter installer ensures proper installation. If the installer can fabricate gutters on-site, it eliminates the middleman, potentially lowering costs and ensuring high-quality installation at a reasonable price.

Sectional Gutters

Sectional gutters have been utilized since around 3,000 B.C. They come in sections ranging from 10 to 20 feet, which are connected to create a comprehensive roof drainage system. Originally crafted from wood and designed as half-round troughs, sectional gutters have since evolved and are now available in materials like vinyl, steel, aluminum, and copper.

 

Vinyl is a popular choice due to its lightweight nature and its ability to complement any roof color. Steel is also a common option, known for its strength and reliability in harsh weather conditions, such as heavy debris, ice, and snow.

 

The primary downside of sectional gutters lies in their joints, where sections connect. While vinyl gutters are easy to install due to their light weight, they lack the durability of other materials.

 

Exposure to ice, snow, and sunlight can cause them to warp or become brittle over time. Steel gutters are susceptible to rust when exposed to moisture, leading to leaks and eventual failure. Issues like rust holes, sagging, or cracks in gutters can result in significant amounts of rainwater bypassing the system and accumulating around the home’s foundation, potentially causing damage. However, regular gutter cleaning and maintenance can prevent these problems by ensuring that gutters remain clear and functional. Additionally, since sectional gutters require on-site assembly, installation can be more time-consuming and costly due to increased labor.