copper designer gutters and downspout on tile roofed home

Whether the roof of your home is made of shingles, tiles, copper or other roofing materials, your roof is your home’s primary defense against weather and the elements that can cause costly damage to your home and what’s inside it. Your roof has a safeguard against water intrusion, your rain gutter system. Installing reliable roof rain gutters and maintaining an adequate drainage system can go a long way toward preserving your roof and other moisture sensitive parts of your home, like walls and foundation.

Roof gutters are mounted along the edge of the roof and provide a direction for rain, melted snow, and other runoff to flow off your roof through a downspout and safely away from the foundation of your home. Specifically, runoff is directed away from your roof, attic, walls, foundation or other areas around your home where collecting water could cause rot, mold and other structural damage.

There are several points to consider when choosing roof gutters for your home. It’s important to consider quality and performance and understand what works best for your type of home and your location. But rain gutters are not just utilitarian anymore. You can also choose styles and materials that not only serve a useful purpose but can also benefit the look of your home.

What Type of Rain Gutters Are Right for your Home?

icon images of different rain gutter types available including round and k-style

Roof rain gutters come in numerous shapes, materials and sizes. Two common designs are ‘K’ style gutters and half round gutters.  While both shapes come in a few different widths that allow for a certain capacity of drainage, the shape of the ‘K’ Style roof gutter will handle a larger capacity of drainage than the same size half round shape rain gutters.

If you’re the DIY type, you’ll need to buy components that comprise all the parts you’ll need, including gutters and downspouts as well as the gaskets that form watertight junctions between them. The gutters come in various sizes, including 4, 5 and 6 inch diameter. You can get matching downspouts in different widths, including 2×3 inches or 3×4 inches. The larger the size the better; it’s worth the minimal difference in price to go with the larger size as wider gutters and downspouts will tend to clog less and thus perform better and be easier to maintain.

What Type of Material Should I Choose for my Roof Gutters?

Tile roofed home with copper rain gutter system showing drainpipe and gutters along the roof line

 

There are several points to consider when choosing the material for your roof rain gutters. The material you choose not only affects the cost of the installation, but also the level of protection the roof gutters provide to your home as well as the look and curb appeal of the home.

  • Vinyl – The most common roof gutter material option for roof rain gutters is vinyl. Vinyl is not only a durable material, but it is also rust-proof and easy to maintain. This cost-effective option is good for the tightest of budgets and will function well and last in a wide variety of climates and regions.
  • Steel – Steel is a good choice for high quality roof rain gutters that can last in the elements but can also handle falling branches and other debris that can cause structural damage to a roof gutter system. Steel is competitive in cost to other materials when quality and durability is considered and can be worth the added expense in regions or on lots with a lot of tall trees and high winds.
  • Aluminum – Aluminum is a cost-effective choice for your roof rain gutters and comes in several different gauges of thickness. Aluminum is a long-lasting material. Corrosion can be prevented with proper maintenance and it is resistant to rust. Aluminum roof gutters provide an installation option that other materials do not.  They can be installed in sections with joints about every ten feet or you can choose seamless aluminum roof rain gutters. Seamless roof gutters need less maintenance and are less likely to develop leaks because the gutters are put up as one continuous section. There are no joints where debris can accumulate, or where moisture can freeze and cause cracks in colder weather, making this a great choice for colder climates.
  • Copper – A popular choice for beauty and durability is copper roof gutters. Copper gutters, while higher in price, are a good investment in your home as they add beauty, value and plenty of curb appeal. Copper will not rust and is resistant to corrosion. It will develop an attractive copper patina or verdigris over time as it ages. A copper rain gutter system is the perfect accompaniment to a copper roof so that they can complement each other and complete your home’s look. They also complement tile roofs and can provide decades of service. Copper’s strength, durability and classic beauty make this a good choice when design and functionality are both a priority.

When Should I Replace my Roof Rain Gutters?

Close Up Of Man Replacing Roof Rain Guttering On Exterior Of House

Regular inspection and maintenance of your roof gutter system can help them do their job well and last longer.  Rain gutters can last 10 to 50 years depending on materials and with proper maintenance. It’s important to know when your roof rain gutters are failing to get the job done and need replacement before your home suffers costly damage. Regular inspection can help you avoid problems with your rain gutter system.

One of the first things to look for when inspecting your roof rain gutters is sagging.  If the roof gutters are sagging and not following the straight line of your roof, the integrity of the system is compromised, and water will not flow to the downspout. This can cause overflow in the sagging section that can damage walls, window casements and the foundation below. Collecting water will also cause rust, rot or freeze damage depending on the material.  

It is important to check your roof gutter system after storms. Flying debris can cause cracks or leaks and can even knock a section down. It is important to make sure all the components of the roof gutter are intact such as the drip edge.  This small flashing edge helps direct water off the shingles and into the gutters preventing damage to the roof shingles and outer walls and windows of your home.

Poor installation or advanced age may mean loose gaskets, missing hardware or broken parts. A full walk around and inspection once a year will help you spot and stop any problems from leading to system failure in a storm. Be sure to follow the line of gutters and downspouts and inspect and clear any debris out of the inside of the gutters, allowing you to fully inspect them inside and out.

Finally, you want to make sure the roof rain gutters are installed properly and can handle the capacity of drainage for your region and home. While many roof gutters can be installed by a do-it-yourselfer, having your roof rain gutters installed by an experienced pro will assure the job is done properly and add to the life of your roof gutters. Contact Prestige Roofing serving Las Vegas and Southern Nevada for a free inspection of your rain gutter system.

Prestige Roofing’s work ranges from service and repair work,  re-roofing  and new construction work, commercial and residential work. They have also done work for ultra-custom projects around the Las Vegas Valley.

copper rain gutter on wall of luxuyr home with new copper roofing

Add Beauty and Value with Copper Rain Gutters

Although we tend to think of gutters in purely functional terms—as a way to control rainwater and protect the areas directly under a roof’s dripline—gutters and other roofing fixtures, like trim, chimneys and ornamental accents, also add aesthetic touches.  Copper gutters and fixtures add distinctive highlights, adding not only their own color and beauty to the home, but also outlining roof lines and drawing out architectural details. As a result, gutters and fixtures can naturally enhance the exterior look of a home. When considering gutters and fixtures that are both functional and attractive, few materials enhance the beauty and aesthetics of a home like copper. Even more appreciated today for its many qualities, copper has long been a popular choice for homeowners and architects around the world looking for distinctive beauty, durability and energy efficiency.

Copper’s Rich History

antique copper utensils copper cups pots candlestick jugWhy copper?  Copper’s story goes back a long way as this versatile material was one of the first metals that humankind mastered. Humans have used copper for over 10,000 years. Its early use was mainly for jewelry, weapons, dishes and drinkware. Because copper is malleable, it is easily worked. It is also durable, retaining its integrity and strength over time. When combined with other metals, copper can forms other strong and valuable alloys, like bronze and brass. Copper resists rust; instead, newly worked copper begins with its shiny golden color and develops a natural patina over time, changing to a brilliant, beautiful green. Throughout the transformation, copper resists corrosion. It’s also reflective and so is highly energy efficient. These characteristics—color, malleability, durability, longevity and energy efficiency —make copper a natural choice for objects of beauty and utility. Because copper, brass, and bronze are durable, many elegant artifacts have survived from antiquity, including classic bronze statues from ancient Greece.  And we all know the Statue of Liberty, a gift from the people of France, that stands, beautifully green and timeless on Liberty Island in New York harbor.

Statue Of Liberty - Manhattan - Liberty Island - New York

Copper roofing is a long-standing use of copper. Copper protects homes and graces decorative domes on famous public, institutional and religious buildings from the Middle East to Europe, and in Asia and the Americas. This newest copper cupola or dome locally was just installed in downtown Las Vegas on the new Nevada Supreme Court building, another elegant representation of a people’s commitment to a long future of democracy and justice.

Copper Gutters and Fixtures: A Sensible Choice

Decorative Archway on Copper Roof desplaying green copper patinaIn addition to the rich history and diverse uses of copper, its many attributes make copper an excellent material for creating beautiful and durable roofs as well as rain gutters and roof fixtures. Because copper is lightweight, it is easy to transport, lift, and handle. Gutters and fixtures made of copper can last 100 years, and when they reach the end of their useful lifespan, the gutters and fixtures are 100% recyclable, making copper a sound environmental choice. Copper gutters and fixtures may include some recycled copper, providing the same quality as the newly mined metal, but with less environmental impact.

When properly installed, copper gutters and fixtures are structurally durable and need little maintenance. Installers solder gutter components together, ensuring a sturdy, metal system that is resistant to wind and storms. If copper gutters are not subject to falling leaf litter or pine needle debris from overhanging trees, the gutters may require little or no maintenance, particularly in the dry desert climate of Las Vegas. Copper does not rust or decay like aluminum or steel. Instead, the copper components will gracefully develop a mature patina, adding classic beauty and appeal to your home, while continuing to protect your building and grounds from water runoff.

Copper Gutters and Fixtures: A Beautiful Choice

copper rain gutter on tile roof home

Using copper for your gutters and fixtures yields a benefit that you will enjoy every day. The aesthetic appeal of copper gutters and fixtures is stunning—a feature that contributes to long-term appreciation in your home’s value. Whether applied to homes with roofs made of slate, tile, copper, or some other metal, copper gutters offer a visual accent that highlights and enhances your home’s roof line, while visually connecting the roof to the ground. When you add copper fixtures to window or door trim, or to the roofs and trim of a nearby structure like a gazebo or deck, the visual tie between roof line, gutter system, and fixtures produces unity and harmony, tying the architectural elements of your home together. This feature will immediately strike visitors—and potential buyers—as a point of interest, and copper’s natural progression from a golden sheen to a sublime green patina ensures that year after year your fixtures and gutters will remain attractive and compelling.

If you would like to explore how copper gutters and fixtures can enhance the beauty of your home and contribute to its long-term value, please contact us or call us at 702-646-7536 for more information.

 

Prestige Roofing’s work ranges from service and repair work,  re-roofing  and new construction work, commercial and residential work. They have also done work for ultra-custom projects around the Las Vegas Valley.

Gutters and Downspouts Defend your Home from Water Damage

Pvc rain gutter system on a tiled roofMost of us probably never think about how our roof keeps water from streaming into walls, doorways and basements. The job of gutters and downspouts is to collect water from the roof during rainstorms or from melting snow, and draw it safely away from the foundation of the house or commercial building. Minimizing water intrusion near the drip line and close to foundation walls is crucial to avoiding moisture-caused structural damage to the home including rot, mold and insect infestation. Keeping your roof drainage system in good shape is an important factor in protecting your home from water damage.  But you can also use your drainage system to enhance the look of your home and be as aesthetically pleasing as it is effective.

Design for Roof Drainage Systems

The location, appearance and building type all influence the design of a roof’s drainage system. These factors determine the slope, roof area and the areas of rainfall intensity. They will determine the location of scuppers, roof drains, downspouts and gutters. Calculating the size of gutters and downspouts includes determining location and spacing, calculating roof area, sizing the downspouts, sizing the gutters and estimating rainfall intensity.

In Las Vegas, we have very little rain, but when we do have rainstorms, they can be quite intense. Protecting the home from water damage in heavy rainstorms requires watertight roof installation with proper insulation and free of damage and defects, and a well-designed and well-maintained rain gutter system.

 copper designer gutters and downspout on tile roofed homeCopper Gutters and Downspouts

Copper is a smart choice of materials for gutters and downspouts. That’s because it’s highly resistant to corrosion and requires minimal maintenance. Even in coastal areas, copper provides years of low maintenance service and durability. Other metals typically used for gutter systems may require recoating or repainting to maintain integrity. Copper is also an easy metal to form and solder and provides strong leak-proof joints.

Decorative Downspouts

Copper downspout gushing waterFor the most part, downspouts aren’t made to be aesthetic. But they can be highly decorative and come in a variety of designs and styles. From whimsy to classical style, your rain gutters can express your personal style and add to the overall look of your home and garden. Another option for a decorative touch that also reuses roof water productively is direct deposit. Downspouts can empty into a stone patio planter filled with ornamental grasses and flower-bearing plants.

Roof Gutter Maintenance and Care

To stay clear of trouble, be sure to inspect and maintain both gutters and downspouts. Look for watermarks, streaks and signs of erosion along the drip line. These are signs that the gutters are overflowing and need to be cleaned. In fact, gutters should be cleaned of debris annually. If you have trees close to the home, cleaning should be done more often. Gutter guards can be installed to reduce the frequency of gutter cleaning.

Keep an eye out on how your gutters function during rainstorms. If there is a spillover of runoff, the downspout drainage system may be too small. When there is spillover occurring, it’s wise to install larger gutters to prevent the excess water from routinely spilling back onto the house.
Armed with knowledge of what to look for, homeowners can do most regular gutter maintenance on their own. All you need is a ladder to reach the gutters and remove debris. At the same time, be sure to inspect for loose fittings, leaks, holes or other damage. Small repairs can often be done by the homeowner, but for major repairs or for aging gutter systems that are starting to sag or break, it’s advisable to consult a professional roofer to be sure your gutter system is in good health and doing its important job of protecting your home from water damage.

Prestige Roofing’s work ranges from service and repair work,  re-roofing  and new construction work, commercial and residential work. They have also done work for ultra-custom projects around the Las Vegas Valley.