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Vinyl Versus Aluminum Gutters - Which One Will You Choose?

by April Carlson

If you are getting ready to put rain gutters on your home, you will find that you have the choice of several materials. The materials you choose will affect the look of your home, the durability of your gutters, as well as what you pay out of your pocket. Although you will find copper and stainless gutters are priced much higher than other materials, both vinyl and aluminum gutters will come in around the same price range. But if you choose between the two of these which one would be best for your home? Here are a few points to ponder.

Cost

Vinyl gutters are one of the least expensive gutter materials that you will find on the market, but as already stated, they compare in price with aluminum gutters when they are installed by someone else. The average cost for 140 feet of vinyl gutters will cost approximately $800, while aluminum gutters will average approximately $775.

If you really want to save money, consider installing your gutters yourself. Because vinyl gutters can be so easy to install, they lend themselves to being a relatively easy do-it-yourself project. You can save almost $300 dollars by inviting a friend or family member over to help you with this weekend project.  

Lifespan

The lifespan of your gutters is often dependent upon the climate that you live in, and how well you take care of them. In a moderate climate, you can expect to get 25+ years out of your aluminum gutters, and 20 to 40 years out of your aluminum gutters. If you live in an extreme climate or you do keep your gutters clean of debris, you can shorten the life of either material.

Sound

When you hear the sound of rain hitting metal, you either love the sound or your hate it. It can be very soothing to some, but it is annoying to others. Because aluminum gutters are metal, they tend to be loud when the rain hits and runs through them.

You can often reduce some of this sound by installing gutter guards that will break the fall of the rain before it hits the gutter. In addition to reducing the sound of the water in aluminum gutters, gutter guards will keep debris out of your gutters, as well as help keep snow and ice from building up and freezing.

Because vinyl gutters are made from plastic, you will not get the same loud noises that you will have with aluminum gutters. You will find that they are much quieter and you will barely be able to hear when the rain hits them and runs through them. Although they are already quiet, they will still also benefit from the installation of gutter guards.

Colors

Color availability is probably one of the places that aluminum gutters differ from vinyl gutters the most. Vinyl gutters are generally only available in the following colors:

  • White
  • Brown
  • Tan
  • Gray

You may be able to find some brands that are available in a few more select colors.

On the other hand, aluminum gutters are available in a wide range of colors although these exact colors may vary by manufacturer. If you choose to install aluminum, you can match the color of your gutters to your home's trim, or use them as a contrasting color in your home's design. 

Ask your gutter contractor about what they install the most of in your community. They will be able to tell you which type holds up better in your environment, as well as show you other projects that they have installed in your community. Call and schedule an appointment to speak with someone at a company like Allstate Gutter & Siding before you make your final decision. 

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