Shopping for new gutters may not sound exciting, but it’s important. Gutters protect your roof and help prevent water damage to your home. Choosing the right type of gutter means less hassle and fewer unexpected expenses down the road.
Of the half-dozen or so choices, galvanized steel gutters are the strongest. They are also one of the most economical. However, galvanized steel gutters have several drawbacks, the biggest one being that they require more maintenance than other types of gutters.
According to This Old House, galvanized steel gutters cost between $4 and $8 per linear square foot. Compared to other types of gutters, this is on the low end of the price spectrum.
- Price - Galvanized steel gutters are usually less than half the cost of copper gutters.
- Durability - Galvanized gutters can withstand heavy winds and the weight of a ladder, flying debris and fallen branches. They’re ideal if you live in a heavily-wooded area. They also work well in cold climates.
- Aesthetics - Galvanized gutters aren’t particularly attractive. They’re definitely not as pleasing to the eye as copper gutters.
- Prone to rust - Over time, galvanized steel gutters will rust. You can prolong the life by repainting, but the gutters likely will have to be replaced after 15-25 years.
Copper gutters are durable, extremely long lasting and easy to maintain. They’re also popular for their curb appeal. Copper gutters are eco-friendly, too. Most are made largely of recycled materials.
According to This Old House, copper gutters usually cost about $15 per linear square foot. This is two to three times the cost of galvanized steel gutters and among the highest of any type of gutters.
- Price - Galvanized copper gutters are slightly less expensive than galvanized gutters.
- Durability - Galvanized copper gutters can withstand heavy winds and the weight of a ladder, flying debris and fallen branches. They’re ideal if you live in a heavily-wooded area. They also work well in cold climates.
- Prone to rust - Over time, galvanized copper gutters will rust. You can prolong the life by repainting every few years, but the gutters likely will have to be replaced after 15-25 years. Stainless copper gutters, on the other hand, will never rust.
- Difficult to install - Galvanized copper gutters require soldering, making them harder to install. They’re also heavier than galvanized gutters, requiring the installation of more brackets and supporting materials. Experts recommend that you hire a professional rather than take this on as a do-it-yourself project.
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