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Vinyl Or Aluminum Gutters: Which Is Better?

Besides adding aesthetics to the house, gutters also protect the home from water damage. Rainwater and snow from the roofs without gutters erode the home's foundation. Also, water splashes on the walls causing stains and rotting of windows.

There are many gutter materials, each having various characteristics and pros and cons. Vinyl and aluminum are common gutter materials, and homeowners prefer them because of their excellent performance and durability.

This write-up provides a guide when choosing between vinyl and aluminum gutters. However, let's first look at the factors to consider when buying gutters.

Factors to Consider When Buying Gutters

Purchasing gutters can be challenging for first-time buyers.

Here are some factors that make a gutter system worth your purchase.

  1. Material
  2. The gutter's material matters a lot when comparing the quality and durability. Some gutter materials available in the market are copper, stainless steel, and the popular vinyl and aluminum.
  3. Each material cost differently depending on their durability and other characteristics. Ensure you buy gutters that are strong enough to withstand harsh climatic conditions. The material should be rust-resistant because of the constant exposure to moisture.
  1. Aesthetics
  2. The gutters are a significant part of the roof, and their appearance contributes to the general aesthetics of the house. Choose a gutter type that adds curb appeal. You can also paint them to match the rest of the roof. Ensure the gutter also matches your home's architectural design.
  1. Roof Pitch
  2. Your type of roof and pitch contribute significantly to the kind of gutters to buy. For example, install unique gutters for flat roofs because water does not flow directly down the roof when it rains. On the other hand, steeply pitched roofs make better use of gutters because the water flows down the roof into the gutters.
  1. Maintenance
  2. If you don't want to spend a lot of money on gutter upkeep, go for gutter materials that require cheaper maintenance. Also, ensure the material and gutter type meets the other good characteristics before buying.
  3. However, the gutters require regular check-ups to ensure they work properly. For instance, you should remove any debris on the roof to prevent the gutters from clogging. In addition, regular check-ups will show you any signs of gutter damage to repair or replace.

Comparing Vinyl and Aluminum Gutters

Once you know the factors to look for when buying a gutter system, you can narrow down your options. Before deciding on aluminum or vinyl, compare the two options and buy the one with more good features.

Below is a quick comparison between the two gutter materials.

  1. Comparing the Installation Process
  2. Vinyl or PVC gutters are lightweight, and most homeowners can DIY installation. These gutters are installed using the snapping together method. However, the PVC gutters have many seams, which take more time to connect. There are also a few installers for vinyl gutters.
  3. On the flip side, aluminum gutters are heavier but easy to install. Most of these gutters are seamless or have few seams that take very minimal time to connect. You can also get many aluminum gutter specialists on the internet or through referrals.
  1. Comparing the Performance
  2. The light weight of vinyl gutters serves as a disadvantage if there are adverse climatic conditions like strong winds and rains. These gutters can easily be blown away or uninstalled. However, they fit well in houses in mild climate areas.
  3. The lightweight also causes the gutters to sag and crack if overweighed by debris or fallen branches. Most homeowners don't choose vinyl gutters because of their high chances of leaking.
  4. On the other hand, the heavy-weight aluminum gutters can withstand strong winds and rains. Although these gutters are more prone to rusting, they are hardly worn and torn by falling branches. Aluminum gutters are also less likely to cause leaks.
  1. Comparing Their Durability
  2. Durability is another essential factor to consider when purchasing gutters. Aluminum tends to last longer than vinyl gutters because they are strong enough to withstand different climates.
  3. Besides, if you live in snowy and rainy climates, aluminum is the perfect choice for gutters because they won't sag due to the weight of the snow. However, homes along the coast should avoid aluminum because the high salt and humidity concentration accelerate rusting.
  4. Vinyl is a better option for houses along the coast because it does not rust, but these gutters have a shorter lifespan due to their low durability. In addition, when exposed to snow, Vinyl cracks, and the damages will force you to buy a new gutter.
  5. However, these gutters perform perfectly in dry climates, and their lifespan is up to 20 years. Those in cold climates require constant maintenance and might be replaced after 10 years.
  1. Comparing the Prices
  2. Knowing the material cost for the gutters helps when setting a budget, and homeowners always choose the most cost-effective materials. For example, vinyl gutters are cheaper, a major attraction to most homeowners. However, the lower durability of these gutters makes them have a higher maintenance cost because they need repairs.
  3. Although aluminum gutters cost more, they have higher durability and fewer maintenance costs. You can also quickly get a qualified installer of aluminum gutters, which costs less than the installation fee.

Aluminum Gutters Are Better Than Vinyl

When comparing aluminum and vinyl, most factors favor aluminum gutters, making them highly preferred. In addition, these gutters are easy to install because of their seamless design, and you can quickly get a qualified installer.

Since they are heavier than vinyl, aluminum gutters hardly wear and tear after strong winds and rains, and they are easy to repair. Moreover, they have a wide range of color options to increase your home's curb appeal, which is every homeowner's desire.

Final Words

Although it is challenging to choose a gutter material, comparing the features makes work easier. Aluminum gutters have more benefits than vinyl, and although they are costly, homeowners prefer them because of their durability and efficiency.