Types of gutter and downpipe

 

Guttering is essential to help keep a property healthy and strong. It assists with draining to help prevent water from building up on the roof and keep it away from the interior of the property. If you’re thinking about replacing a guttering system, putting one on a new home or repairing an existing one, you might want to know more about the different types of guttering and downpipes that exist. Understanding what’s available and the difference that the materials and styles make will put you in a good position. You can make sure you know what you’re doing if you want to do some DIY or you’re looking for a professional roofing contractor to handle your guttering for you.

 

Rain Gutter Types

 

There are several different materials and shapes to consider when you’re looking at drainage systems. Whether you’re trying to identify your existing guttering or thinking about installing new gutters, you can start by understanding what possibilities are available.

 

Cast Iron Guttering

 

Cast iron guttering is durable and can be found on older buildings. It’s not used as much anymore because there are more cost-effective options, such as PVC. Cast iron guttering typically comes in three shapes: half-round, square and ogee (OG). While half-round and square gutters tend to be held in brackets fixed to the fascia, ogee cast iron guttering is often screwed directly into the fascia. This can mean that the screws rust and can’t be removed or leads to the guttering being unstable. Another issue that can occur is that the old sealant around the joints can deteriorate and start to leak.

 

Rolled Steel and Cement Guttering

 

Rolled steel and cement guttering are similar to cast iron guttering in the way that they’re put together. However, rolled steel and cement guttering always has brackets to support it, rather than ever being screwed into the fascia. The same problems can occur though, including leaking joints and rusting bolts. In downpipes, there often are no joints, and sections sit inside each other instead.

 

Plastic Guttering

 

Plastic guttering is made from PVC and offers a number of advantages. It is also available in half-round, square and ogee styles, but there are also several other shapes that you can consider. Different manufacturers can offer different profiles, as well as having different systems for joints and fixing. These can include brackets and joining clips, which have rubber seals to prevent leakage. Downpipes can have different types of product to seal them too. For example, round pipes might have O rings, or sometimes plastic cement might be used.

 

Other Materials

 

There are also various other materials that you can choose for your guttering system. Metal gutter materials range in price from expensive copper to cheaper aluminium. You can even have wooden guttering. However, the popularity of wood guttering has fallen, and there are more practical choices.

 

Guttering Pieces

 

There are also several different guttering pieces, apart from general lengths of guttering. These include corners, end closures, downpipe connectors, eve support brackets and joining pieces. These guttering pieces help to connect lengths of guttering and fix them to the property. Other accessories include pipe connectors, brackets, hoppers, and bends.

 

What Is the Best Material for Gutters?

 

To decide which is the best material for gutters, you have to consider the pros and cons of the available options. Some of the things to think about include practicality and durability, price and appearance. Some of the more expensive options, like copper, will give you a more durable draining system. However, many people would still rather choose more affordable materials with a shorter lifespan like uPVC rather than spend extra on something more durable. Plastic guttering is a great low-cost option and offers plenty of ways to customise your system as you want it. Aluminium is often chosen as a relatively expensive but durable option for commercial properties.

 

How Much Does It Cost to Replace Gutters?

 

Knowing the cost of replacing gutters is important if you want to replace a guttering system that has deteriorated. However, there are lots of factors that can affect the cost of new guttering for a property. Firstly, there’s the material you choose for your drainage system. Then you need to think about the size of the property and whether there are any access issues that might make it more difficult to install new gutters. You also have to consider the labour required to get the job done. Replacing PVC guttering could cost around £30 per metre, whereas replacing cast iron guttering could cost twice as much. Fixing or replacing a downpipe can also be more expensive than fixing standard guttering.

 

Can You DIY the Fitting of Down Pipes and Gutters?

 

If you’re thinking about fitting gutters and downpipes for your property, you might be wondering whether you can save by doing it yourself. While it is possible to install guttering yourself, there are lots of things to take into account before doing so. First of all, you need the right equipment to install the guttering safely. For low guttering on the ground floor, this might be easier and could even be done with a ladder. However, scaffolding may be required for further storeys. You might want to replace only a section of gutter, or you could be looking at replacing a whole system, which will obviously be more work.

 

You’ll need to start by removing any old guttering. First, hold the fascia in place with nails, then remove any bolts holding the guttering on. You can use ropes to help with lowering the sections of guttering to the ground safely. How you install your new guttering will depend on a few factors, including material and manufacturer. You will need to understand how the pieces fit together and how you should be installing the guttering system to ensure it is sealed in all of the right places. You can read more about fascia and soffits here if you want to go a bit further in your DIY projects.

 

New gutters can make a big difference to a property. They help to protect the roof and the structure of the property as a whole.