Ballpark Estimate: $5 to $10 a foot for installed steel or aluminum
Want to be sure your house can safely weather the next big storm? Then you may want to invest in some quality gutters to prevent any damage or flooding from occuring.
Gutters typically run around the eaves of your home and serve an important role in collecting rainwater and ice redirecting them away from your home. This helps prevent these items from causing damage to your roof, siding, foundation and yard.
Over time, however, harsh weather conditions and age can take a toll on your gutters and wear them down. In addition, your gutters can also be damaged by things like falling debris, further lessening their life span.
Regardless of the reason, though, when your gutters are no longer performing up to par, they’ll need to be replaced or else you may run the risk of experiencing damage to your home. In fact, improperly working gutters can result in an array of problems, including flooded basements, cracked foundations and rotted siding, doors and windowframes. Depending on the slope of your property, they can also protect the yard from becoming flooded or causing the soil to deteriorate around the exterior of your home.
A Range of Options
When you decide to replace your gutters, the process may be more than you bargained for. This is because a wide variety of gutter types exist. You’ll need to decide what type you want, what size and thickness, and even how you want them to be installed. The style home you have, the look you want to achieve and also the configuration you prefer will also weigh into the equation, too. In addition, how much you have to spend on this endeavor can help guide your decision, since there is a wide range of price points to consider.
When shopping for gutters, the first consideration is usually what material you prefer them in. Some of the most common options you csn find today include:
When weeding through these choices, you’ll need to consider what will look best with your home’s exterior. For instance, aluminum and steel are the most commonly-used gutter styles today. Both are relatively affordable and durable and both are unlikely to rust, too. They come in a wide variety of colors so you can select something that will coordinate well with your paint color.
If you have a high-end or historic home, though, you’ll likely prefer some of the more upscale gutter materials, such as wood or copper, that will be more in keeping with the look and feel of your home.
Wood gutters are a classic choice and these were also popular until the 1960s when the steel gutters first came into vogue. Whole they look great and are a perfect fit for some homes, they also have a few downsides to them. First, they cost more than the metal options and second, they also take more work to keep them up. For instance, they need to be painted and oiled on a regular basis.
Copper gutters are another high-end option. These can cost even more than wood, which prices them out of many people’s budget. However, they also give a very dramatic effect and are very low-maintance, which makes them an appealing option for some homeowners. Copper also becomes more beautiful over time as its natural patina ages and takes on rich green tones that make an elegant statement.
In addition to the material you select, there are also a number of different gutter styles from which to choose.
As the name implies, this is a gutter that is shaped like a simple u, which makes it easy to catch rain and allow it to flow down properly.
This is most popular option and although it’s similar to the U, this shape is a little more stylized somewhat like the letter K, with wider, angled sides.
This is a classic shape that was traditionally used in the past and therefore, is the look of choice for historic and upscale homes. It’s very effective but also costs more, so many home owners gravitate toward the other, more modern and affordable, options.
Where to Buy
You can buy your gutters in sections from home supply stores such as Lowes and Home Depot and then attach them together yourself. You can also find high-end sectional gutters online or through specialty distributors that can be sottered together, which is the gold standard today. Or, you can order from a specialty supplier who will bring a coil of gutters to your home and cut them on your premises, which means that each gutter will be in one complete piece to give you a seamless effect and is much less expensive than sottering.
To find gutter supplies, you can look in the phonebook or do a search online.There are a wealth of online companies you can find, including Gutters Supply, Hardware World, and eGutter. In addition, if you are having a roof repair or replacement done or undergoing any other professional home repair projects, your contractor my be able to recommend a reliable company. Just always check references before you formally accept any bids.
Also keep in mind that the width and length of your gutter will depend on your home’s specific specifications and needs. The type of roof, landscape around the foundation and other variables will also come into play. For instance, certain roof types, including those made from slate or tile, as well as those that have a particularly steep pitch, may require gutters that are particularly wide.
Therefore, your best best is to have an expert come to your home and recommend the gutter metal, profile and dimensions that will work best in your unique situation.
Further, gutters can be installed using a variety of methods to hold them in place, including straps, brackets, and hangers to mount them to your home.
If you believe that once your gutters are installed, you won’t need to think about them again for years, you’re probably incorrect. Like anything else related to your home, gutters require regular maintenance to keep them functioning properly. That’s because in addition to capturing water and directing it, they will also be likely to attract leaves, twigs and other debris in their vessels. Over time, this material can build up and clog up the pathway and prevent water from being able to travel through. Therefore, you’ll need to have them cleaned periodically. You’ll also need to check them for wear and tear any damage that is minor enough to be repaired.
Some typical signs that your gutters may need to be replaced include sagging in areas, a change in their angle, and standing water underneath them, which indicates they aren’t functioning properly anymore.
In addition, if you find that your gutters are in good shape yet aren’t doing their job well, you may need to add downspout extenders to ensure the water move an adequate distance away from your foundation.
Even the most expensive gutters are only as good as they work. Therefore, many homeowners decide to invest in the variety of products you can find on the market today that can help keep your gutters free of debris and functioning at their best. For instance, you can use gutter screens, which are usually made of plastic and metal and go on the end like a cap to allow water to flow in but still keep any loose materials out. You can often find these yourself at home repair stores. In addition, similar products called gutter guards available through custom gutter dealers have also become quite popular. These are more expensive and are often professionally installed. If you live in an area with very cold and snowy winters, you may also want to look for options that will prevent rain from freezing and clogging your gutters.
What It Costs
All of the variables will greatly impact what you’ll spend for your gutters. The main factors that affect the final cost include the material, profile, width, size and length, and whether you do-it-yourself have it professionally installed. (Note that most people go with the installed option, since doing it yourself can be extremely challenging and time intensive.)
Price Per Foot Installed:
- Steel and Aluminum Gutters: $5 to $10
- Wood Gutters: $10 to $20
- Copper Gutters: $15 to $50 (The price of copper fluctuates a great deal.)
While the number of feet you’ll need will depending on the measurements of your house, the number of floors and the roof line, the experts say a typical home may need somewhere between 150 or 250 feet.
This means for a home needing 250 linear feet, steel or aluminum gutters can cost between $1,250 and $2,500, wood gutters can cost between $2,500 and $5,000, and copper gutters can cost between $3,750 and $12,500. All of these prices are installed.
Further, if you’re wondering what the materials themselves would cost without installation, a general rule of thumb is generally that the cost of the material is about 50 percent or less of the total material and installation cost. (Although copper installation can be proportionally more than the material cost.)
Some homeowners today want stainless steel gutters. This is a relatively new trend, but one worth considering. If you want to go this route, you can expect to pay about $20 a foot installed.