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Old 01-08-2011, 01:48 PM   #1
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


Hello. I'm building a new house and am thinking about getting my gutters from Lowes. They have both vinyl and metal. Although the vinyl is slightly cheaper I would not be opposed to going with metal.
Although (in my opinion) the vinyl is prettier than metal, my main concern is with performance. Can someone let me know the pros and cons of going with vinyl over metal, or vice versa.
Thanks.

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Old 01-08-2011, 04:09 PM   #2
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


Do you have snow and ice in the winter? If you do I would suggest going with the metal gutters. If you do not want seams and potential leaks, I would suggest looking for a professional to install seamless gutters on your new house.

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Old 01-08-2011, 04:19 PM   #3
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


I have had both plastic and aluminum gutters. Metal is far superior.

Seamless is obviously the way to do since it is continuous since a good installation with not have the seams and installation is usually more professional.

Depending on the number of downspouts and run lengths, an oversize downspout (if you can use one) can really be an asset.

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Old 01-08-2011, 07:46 PM   #4
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


depends where you live,pvc rain handling system are very popular in European countries where i think they have more or less perfected the system

over here metal is king
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Old 01-09-2011, 01:46 AM   #5
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


Depending on where you live, plastic gutters can crack due to the cold weather, and could have a shorter lifespan due to exposure to UV light.
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Old 01-09-2011, 02:14 AM   #6
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


Thanks for the replies. I live in central coastal California. So no ice and no snow. Gets around freezing in the middle of the night in winter otherwise just normal rain around Jan-Feb.
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Old 01-09-2011, 04:28 AM   #7
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


Everyone has very valid points.,seamless is the way to go for several reasons ,the aluminum has a better variety in colors. The performance of an aluminum seamless gutter system requires less maintenance other than maybe a power wash here or there and cleaning from debris.,the vinyl is a magnet for dirt and not to mention its not a seamless system.The vinyl sections at lowes are either 8' or 10' maybe 12' honestly I have never used them, my gutter installer has always used seamless.Anyway the sections have to be connected properly and if not the straps come apart and they would seem difficult to connect 4 or 5 of them and keep them connected while maintaining a negative degree for water flow. I have contracted numerous roofs with vinyl and they never hold together very well.,now if your house is really small then they might work well for you, meaning the less sections to connect the less likely of sagging and losing your negative flow for drainage.
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Old 01-09-2011, 08:27 AM   #8
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our local roofing supply will drive a gutter truck to your site and run them off for you to hang.

If I lived in CA I'd use half rounds with chains as downspouts:
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Old 01-09-2011, 09:57 AM   #9
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


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our local roofing supply will drive a gutter truck to your site and run them off for you to hang.

If I lived in CA I'd use half rounds with chains as downspouts:
I wonder if people in CA will upgrade to 6" gutters after all that rain they had a few weeks ago.

I often visit CA and I see many homes in the southern CA where homeowners don't worry about drainage or having huge hills in their backyard with minimal vegetation.
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Old 01-09-2011, 10:05 AM   #10
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


You may want to consider building your house with no gutters. We used to have gutters on our house, and removed them because they clogged with leaves, and seemed to increase the chance of ice dams. This was about 8 years ago, and there have been no problems since.

As long as the overhang of the house is adequate, and there is positive pitch of the soil away from the house, there seems to be little reason to have gutters, unless you are installing a water collection system (as they do in Bermuda). I would at least consider the option of designing with no gutters, and use a diverter above the entrances if you do not have a covered entryway.
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Old 01-09-2011, 01:06 PM   #11
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


I would not recommend for anyone to remove they're gutters.Guttering assists in the redirection of water coming off the roof.,without them you further the possibility of erosion, and not to mention flooding your basement and causing severe foundation problems.,Maintain your gutters keep them clean and your downspouts unclogged and have a functionable process of redirection out of your downspouts.,and those copper gutters are super nice.I live in Springfield and have familly in San diego and Ramona and I don't think 8" gutters would have helped.
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Old 01-09-2011, 01:25 PM   #12
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


Dan wasn't speaking of removing your gutters

he was speaking of designing and building and grading so they are not needed which is really the best way
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Old 01-09-2011, 01:38 PM   #13
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


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Originally Posted by Daniel Holzman View Post
You may want to consider building your house with no gutters. We used to have gutters on our house, and removed them because they clogged with leaves, and seemed to increase the chance of ice dams. This was about 8 years ago, and there have been no problems since.
I made the comment in the event of someone reading the post/replies decided to remove his guttering because he or she read it on this site. The intention was not to try and correct him but to give on lookers the result of removing your gutters without the proper requirements to achieve a non-gutter structure.I am sure that you understand sometimes people see something and just do it because he or she said it was true.Gutters are a fairly expensive roof accessory and if someone removes them its difficult to reinstall gutters that have been removed.
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Old 01-09-2011, 03:20 PM   #14
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


Thank you all for your valuable responses. After reading all the posts in this thread I have decided to go with the seamless metal gutters. I certainly do not want joint issues, nor cracking or sagging problems.
I can't go with the zero-gutter solution because the roof sheds a lot of water and has slowly been wearing a furrow at the back of the house as the water drains slightly downhill. Also sections of the plot are bowl shaped, so I have to divert all the water I can. Thanks again.
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Old 01-09-2011, 05:17 PM   #15
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Vinyl vs. metal gutters.


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Originally Posted by Roofmaster417 View Post
I would not recommend for anyone to remove they're gutters.Guttering assists in the redirection of water coming off the roof.,without them you further the possibility of erosion, and not to mention flooding your basement and causing severe foundation problems.,Maintain your gutters keep them clean and your downspouts unclogged and have a functionable process of redirection out of your downspouts.,and those copper gutters are super nice.I live in Springfield and have familly in San diego and Ramona and I don't think 8" gutters would have helped.
I agree. Removing gutters can cause wash outs/severe erosion directly below the eaves even if you have positive pitch.

Another reason why vinyl gutters are not a good idea is when accessing the roof to clean them, most people lean the ladder right on the gutter, and I doubt if vinyl gutters can handle the weight pushing against them as they age.


Last edited by handy man88; 01-09-2011 at 05:20 PM.
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