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Gutter Replacement Cost Guide

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Are you home gutters leaking or showing signs of age? Maybe there is rust or corrosion in places and the gutters are unsightly and ugly. Gutters are a vital part of your home's protection and very important. Replacing your gutters doesn't have to be too expensive but what is it going to cost? Let's explore some of the many options you have for gutters, their importance, and tips for choosing the best gutters.

Why Are Gutters So Important?

Gutters keep water from running down the sides of the home exterior. When water drains from the roof, it enters the roof's drain system (guttering). The drain water runs along the gutter channels until it reaches a downspout where it is taken away from the house foundation.

Without gutters, the water would run down the exterior and into the foundation area. It will eventually erode the soil and moisture will make its way next to and around your foundation. In time, this will form cracks and weaken the foundation. In fact, the integrity of your house will eventually be threatened. This is why you need gutters which do not leak.

Determining the Cost of New Gutters?

Gutters can be repaired but if they are rusted or have other problems, it's just a matter of time until new leaks begin to appear. It's usually in your best interest to replace old gutters, and here are your choices for materials.

  • Vinyl
  • Galvanised steel
  • Aluminium
  • Powder coated steel
  • Copper
  • Stainless steel

Let's take a closer look at each option:

Vinyl

Vinyl is the least expensive option. It is a plastic like material which does not rust or rot. Vinyl is not affected by termites or any other insects. You never need to paint vinyl as the colour is made into the material. If it becomes scratched, there is no colour loss and scratches are not easy to see. You can choose from a wide range of colours and styles when you go with vinyl.

If you are looking for durable and inexpensive guttering, vinyl is a good choice. In fact, due to its construction and light weight, self install vinyl gutter systems are available. The sections are designed to snap together so there is no need to worry about soldering seams.

Galvanised steel

Normally, steel will rust within a short amount of time and it needs to be protected. Galvanising is a good way to protect the metal. The guttering is dipped in a zinc mixture or electro-coated with zinc. This provides additional protection because the zinc works as a sacrificial anode. In other words, as zinc slowly corrodes it protects the metal.

Galvanised gutters are cost effective but each section must be properly sealed. This can add to the installation costs and of course over the years, they may eventually begin to rust.

Aluminium

Aluminium is the most popular choice today for a number of reasons. It does not rust so your gutters will last for many years with few problems. You can buy seamless gutters made from lightweight and corrosion resistant aluminium. How is this possible? It starts with a process known as extrusion.

When you want seamless gutters, the contractor comes to your home with extrusion equipment. Aluminium is placed in the machine and it is drawn through a die to create one continuous section of guttering. This way, the gutters can be custom made for your home and there are no seams.

Aluminium comes with several colour options and the process does not take very long to complete. Your contractor and crew can come out and complete the job in less than a day.

Powder Coated Steel

Powder coating is a special process which bonds paint to metal on an atomic level. This creates a scratch resistant and durable coating. Some of these products (like Colorbond) come with a 20 year guarantee.

Copper and Stainless Steel

These metals are superior when it comes to guttering but the price is beyond the budget of the average homeowner. Installation can be an expensive and time consuming process, but they provide beauty which is unmatched.

Gutter Shapes

Here are some of the shapes you can choose:

  • "D" style - has a square base and is in a block shape. Also called box gutter.
  • Half round - the bottom is curved and this makes them self cleaning because most debris will not stick to the bottom and build up, like with the quad or "D" style.
  • Quarter round - flat on one side and round on the other
  • "S" shape - made like "D" gutter but with a curvy profile to the gutter front. It gives an "old fashion" look to the home.
  • Variations - you will find a number of variations of standard gutters on the market today.

What about Costs?

Vinyl is available as low as $4 a metre and powder coated steel may run as much as $10 per metre. However, this is just for materials. You'll also need downspouts, mounting hardware and perhaps other materials. Figure at least $250 to $500 for just the gutters.

Other Expenses

If you have new gutters installed, there is the expense of removing and disposing of the old gutters. Plus, the kind of gutters you choose will greatly affect the price. You also should have the roof inspected to see if it needs repairs. Most guttering jobs range in price from $3000 to $6000. This is why you should get three estimates from guttering professionals.

Who Can Install Gutters?

Your gutters can be installed by roofers. Some plumbers also do roofing and guttering. Guttering installers may need to be licensed. For example, in NSW gutters are part of the roof plumbing industry. In order to install gutters, your tradie must be either a licensed contractor, certified tradesperson, or certified supervisor. Requirements vary from state to state.

Advice to the "Do It Yourself" Homeowner

If you plan to install your own gutters, consider these factors:

  • Gutters must be installed so the water gradually drains into the downspouts. Otherwise you will have ponded water in part of the gutters.
  • You will be working off the ground and increasing your chance for injuries.
  • This is a job that requires a competent helper and cannot be done by one person.
  • Before installing your own gutters, get some estimates. You may find the extra money is well worth it.

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