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Old 11-13-2018, 09:22 PM   #1
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5inch vs 6inch gutters


We're going to do new gutters on a house that had the existing gutters removed. I see there's 5 inch and 6 inch gutters. Other than the obvious that one is bigger than the other, is there really a benefit to getting a 6" gutter over a 5" one? This is an investment property, so we're looking to control costs of course, and the 5" ones can save us some money. But we don't want someone to look at the house and think, "Well, it's great, but I need to replace the gutters in a couple years." Or anything like that.

One story house. Total gutter run is about 30' in the front, 7' on the side, and 36' in the back.
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Old 11-13-2018, 10:02 PM   #2
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Re: 5inch vs 6inch gutters


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Originally Posted by mramj4 View Post
We're going to do new gutters on a house that had the existing gutters removed. I see there's 5 inch and 6 inch gutters. Other than the obvious that one is bigger than the other, is there really a benefit to getting a 6" gutter over a 5" one? This is an investment property, so we're looking to control costs of course, and the 5" ones can save us some money. But we don't want someone to look at the house and think, "Well, it's great, but I need to replace the gutters in a couple years." Or anything like that.

One story house. Total gutter run is about 30' in the front, 7' on the side, and 36' in the back.
A vote for 5"since most gutters are plugged with leaves/debris and a plugged 5"will drain just as much water as a plugged 6".
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Old 11-14-2018, 01:36 AM   #3
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Re: 5inch vs 6inch gutters


We use plain 5" here even on the monster houses. Unless you use larger downspouts, there's no advantage to using 6". I've never seen a 5" gutter not handle even the heaviest of rains on the largest of roofs provided the correctly sized holes are punched for the downspouts. Larger downspouts would be lots more bucks because they are usually not stocked items.

One thing that really annoys me with gutter installers is when I see 2.5" holes drilled for the downspouts. Why would one install a 3x4 downspout and only drill a 2.5" hole?! The dang tool to punch a full 3x4 hole is under $250. It's done out of pure laziness.
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Old 11-14-2018, 05:06 PM   #4
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Re: 5inch vs 6inch gutters


Concur on the 5". The only reason I would see using anything bigger is if you had a flat roof.

My parents home has a flat roof that even 6" gutters could not handle (we tried). We had to custom make 10" gutters out of 1x10s connected to a 6" downspout to handle the water flow.
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Old 11-15-2018, 07:18 PM   #5
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Re: 5inch vs 6inch gutters


If you have a large roof surface, 6" helps quite a bit. They also don't get clogged as bad. 5" works fine on most homes.
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Old 11-15-2018, 07:20 PM   #6
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Re: 5inch vs 6inch gutters


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We use plain 5" here even on the monster houses. Unless you use larger downspouts, there's no advantage to using 6". I've never seen a 5" gutter not handle even the heaviest of rains on the largest of roofs provided the correctly sized holes are punched for the downspouts. Larger downspouts would be lots more bucks because they are usually not stocked items.

One thing that really annoys me with gutter installers is when I see 2.5" holes drilled for the downspouts. Why would one install a 3x4 downspout and only drill a 2.5" hole?! The dang tool to punch a full 3x4 hole is under $250. It's done out of pure laziness.
Even worse, I cut outlets with snips. Takes me under 30 seconds to cut an outlet or an x, I can't imagine under sizing a drain hole.
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Old 11-16-2018, 08:34 AM   #7
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Re: 5inch vs 6inch gutters


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If you have a large roof surface, 6" helps quite a bit. They also don't get clogged as bad. 5" works fine on most homes.

I am inclined to think that a 3x4 downspout should allow minor leaf deposits to pass more easily than a 2x3 but my question is do you have actual experience to support your statement or is just an untested opinion like mine?


Irregardless of your answer I will probably the concept with one downspout.
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Old 11-16-2018, 09:41 AM   #8
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Re: 5inch vs 6inch gutters


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I cut outlets with snips. Takes me under 30 seconds to cut an outlet or an x, I can't imagine under sizing a drain hole.
I always used snips too but I tip my hat to you because the best I could ever do was 30.16 seconds.
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Old 11-16-2018, 11:23 PM   #9
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Re: 5inch vs 6inch gutters


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Originally Posted by Colbyt View Post
I am inclined to think that a 3x4 downspout should allow minor leaf deposits to pass more easily than a 2x3 but my question is do you have actual experience to support your statement or is just an untested opinion like mine?


Irregardless of your answer I will probably the concept with one downspout.

Purely anecdotal but we are surrounded by trees and the gutters often get plugged despite my best efforts, and during heavy rains they would often overflow. Last year we had the gutters replaced; same size gutters but larger downspouts. They still get full of debris but we haven't had an overflow.
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