Gutters are not necessary if you live on a landscape that slopes downwards or your house has an extended roof as rainwater will flow away on its own. Again you might not need gutters if your area experiences little rain or you have a concrete house. A concrete house has better foundational protection against water damage.
In most buildings, gutters are key necessities, especially in water management. Gutters ensure the front of your house isn’t flooded with all the water from the roof. It also ensures leaves and other matter on your roof don’t lead to stagnant water. However, as we have mentioned, gutters are not always necessary during roofing. There are specific occasions where they become optional.
Read on to know when you will need them, their advantages, disadvantages, common problems, lifespans, and more.
When Should You Avoid Gutters?
When you don’t have gutters on your house, it may be susceptible to ruined foundations, infiltrated water, and molds.
If your house has a good basement with a sound drainage system, then you may want to avoid gutters.
Yes, you can easily do away with gutters whenever water doesn’t settle around your house or flow to your yard. Adding better drainage to your house to prevent water from spattering on your siding is an alternative way instead of applying gutters.
Are Gutters Compulsory For Your House?
We keep asking ourselves why gutters are essential for our homes. After all, they only control an imperfect amount of water for the whole compound and create a suitable environment for nesting. Besides offering a sense of beauty to a house, gutters are essential for your house. You are likely not to experience any foundational problems with gutters fitted on roofs.
In addition, erosion will be significantly minimized around your house when it rains because of the gutters. Rainwater is likely to flow into the nearby swimming pools and stagnate in the lawns. Nonetheless, this only applies to traditional roofing. Most modern houses are not fitted with gutters, which may be confusing whether or not to use them.
Before concluding, you may consider analyzing some facts about gutters.
Facts About Gutters
The main reason for installing gutters is to direct water from the roof to a storage facility or any preferred direction. As mentioned above, this helps reduce flooding, erosion, and foundational-related problems, such as when your house is built on weak grounds like red clay. Likewise, you are obliged to use gutters when your house is located at the bottom of a slope. However, they remain to be optional based on your situation.
When Are Gutters Optional?
Occasionally, your home is multipurpose in a way that including gutters will increase construction costs yet add no value. Gutters are optional if you live on a landscape that slopes downwards as rainwater will flow away on its own.
Another instance is when you have constructed your house using concrete. Generally, concrete will offer better foundational protection, making gutters optional.
If you reside in areas that experience little rainfall, gutters are not a must. Finally, homes with extended roofs do not require gutters because water will drip at a safer distance away from the walls, sidings, and foundations.
With these situations, therefore, some roofers will still discourage gutters for valid reasons.
When Do Roofers Discourage The Use Of Gutters?
Roofing with gutters is always a good option, but always ask your roofers why they are against it.
First, gutters interfere with the facial boards. As it rains, there is a high probability that water will splash from gutters to facial boards that support the roof’s overhang. Eventually, they will rot, which raises the maintenance costs due to regular replacements.
Secondly, facial boards are easier to install and maintain than gutters. Roofers also want to avoid extra work by extending the roof instead of using gutters. Gutter clogs threaten gutters and may resist a smooth water flow, another valid reason why gutters are discouraged. Although the problem remains solvable using gutter covers, it may be expensive to get many of them when putting up a large building.
Thirdly, gutters will destroy your roof due to warping since most manufacturers use either steel or aluminum in making them. That is, they can either expand or contract so much to the extent of heaving away your roof or distorting its shape.
Finally, the cost of cleaning tools for gutters is high, making it expensive to maintain gutters. You should have the following tools: leaf blower/hose, cleaning kit, and gutter scoop when cleaning.
The acquisition of these tools is relatively expensive, excluding the time needed to perform the task. When cleaning gutters, you may also require a dust mask, goggles, and a pair of solid working gloves. Again, all these make gutter maintenance expensive, especially in optional situations.
Do You Need Gutters All Around The House?
You will not require gutters around the whole house if you don’t have slopes all around. The only desired locations will be around a slope to let water flow into a tank or wherever you have directed your pipes. Regrettably, having gutters around the entire house means many problems associated with gutters. It is, therefore, reasonable to have a few gutters to minimize handling these problems.
What Are Other Common Problems Associated With Gutters?
Most gutters are also destroyed because of sagging. A slight dip causes water to be collected in a standard section of the gutter due to poor drainage. As the water settles for a long time, its weight lowers the gutters. Consequently, this results in hardwood failure if the gutters are attached to wood segments.
Checking after a storm is the best time to discover and detect leakages on gutters, as they are hardly noticed on a clear sunny day. Small holes on gutters are easy to repair, but they might cost if you wait until you experience foundational erosion.
Poor maintenance makes gutters to be damaged within a short time. It could also result from sags and leakages, which are left unattended for some time. Different from other gutter-related problems, it will require the replacement of the whole gutter. Furthermore, it is a common problem for sectional gutters. Therefore, it is best to consider more factors before installing such gutters.
Benefits Of Sectional Gutters
Sectional gutters are created by connecting many gutters in distinct sections for about 20 feet. It has the following benefits:
Sectional gutters are made of smooth surfaces to allow water flow and prevent water pooling, hence minimal chances of corrosion.
Sectional gutters are designed in different widths of different sizes. It allows customization by mixing large and small gutter diameters at water collection and drainage points.
You can easily alter sectional gutters into different diameters and shapes like curves at the roof corners.
Disadvantages Of Sectional Gutters
The sectional gutter is relatively expensive, and its cost is also determined by availability. The fact that these gutters are rare to find makes them expensive, and special equipment is also required during installation to avoid sagging.
Since they are left open, they can collect leaves and dust from the environment that might cause clogging. Gutter covers may not fit when used because of the altered shapes during installation.
Are Plastic Gutters A Better Alternative?
Current gutters are made of plastic for many reasons. Above and beyond resistance to rusting, plastics are cheap to purchase and install. Ordinarily, their prices are always half those of other gutters like aluminum- and copper-made. Their lightweight makes them easier to be lifted in bulk when installing gutters on high buildings. Metal gutters are also cumbersome when carrying up the ladder.
When you decide to use plastic, it is good to know that the sun’s rays easily dent it, and they begin to fade. They might also not be favorable in forested areas because falling branches from trees can easily break them. Plus, they generally weaken with time. Some plastics are also delicate and breakable, thus having a limited life expectancy.
Begging the question: Do other gutters have longer lifespans?
Lifespans Of Gutters
The estimated lifespan of a gutter depends on the material used to make the gutter. On average, gutters will last for 20 years, save for copper gutters with an extended lifespan of 50 years. However, proper maintenance of gutters may help improve their lifespan. You will, however, need regular inspection to determine when to replace your gutters.
No matter how durable the material is, you will reduce its life expectancy if not cleaned and checked frequently. Nonetheless, you can increase its lifespan by using gutter covers to prevent leaves and other debris from clogging the gutter. Also, position them in a slanting position for attic insulation and proper ventilation to prevent water from pooling and ice deposits.
Gutters are essential for your home but not compulsory. Besides the advantages and disadvantages of the material, consider the gutter’s lifespan that you select. When building a modern home, extend the roof as long as your home rests on a slope. However, you might not need gutters if you have a concrete house, your roof is extended, or if you live in areas that slope downwards or experience little rainfall.