In this article, I’ll be telling you all you need to know about vinyl gutters, including their pros and cons.
Vinyl Rain Gutter And Hangers
Gutters are an important part of any roofing system, as they provide a channel for roof water or melted snow to flow downwards away from the roof.
There are many materials used in making gutters, and one that has become popular in recent times is vinyl gutters.
A few people may have recommended this gutter type to you, and for the fact you’re reading this article, I can assume that you’d like to learn more.
What Is Vinyl Material?
Vinyl is a type of plastic material that can be used to make pipes, gutters, and many other plumbing applications.
It is also easily recyclable and has a fairly long life span.
Why Are Vinyl Gutters So Popular Before Now?
There are many reasons why vinyl gutters are the go-to material for gutters nowadays.
I’ll be listing out some of the major reasons below.
It is cheap
Compared to other materials used in making gutters, a vinyl gutter system is very cheap. You can get them for as low as $3 a length.
As we all know, homeowners are looking for ways to cut costs on building materials, and the cheaper option always seems like the best.
It is lightweight and easy to install
Contractors love installing vinyl gutters because of their lightweight. They aren’t only easy to carry around, they are also very easy to Install.
When installing Vinyl gutters, the vinyl gutter hangers do not need to have a great weight-bearing capacity, since vinyl is so light.
Contractors aside, DIYers will also find them easy to install.
They are easy to maintain
Maintaining Vinyl gutters is relatively easier than other gutter types. They do not need to be painted regularly, nor do they require any anti-rust coating since they are rust-resistant.
Disadvantages of Vinyl Gutters System
Even with all the benefits of vinyl gutters, they still have their fair share of cons. You might want to consider these downsides before you invest in a vinyl gutter system.
They don’t last as long as some other gutter materials
Vinyl gutters may be durable, but they don’t last as long as say, an aluminum gutter system.
It would interest you to know that the lifespan of a vinyl gutter system is heavily dependent on the thickness of the gutters.
The thicker it is, the longer it can last. And vice versa.
They are prone to temperature damage
Because of how light the material is, vinyl gutters are liable to be damaged by extreme temperatures.
They become very brittle in freezing temperatures, and they usually warp when the outdoor temperature is high.
This is one of the reasons they don’t last as long as other gutter types.
They can break under heavy pressure
If you live in an area that usually experiences heavy rainfall, then you might want to think twice about using vinyl gutters.
This is because the PVC material isn’t strong enough to carry heavy volumes of water over time.
When the weight of the water becomes too much, the seams will begin ripping apart. And this is why some experts advise that you install seamless gutters.
So What Can I Use In Place Of Vinyl Gutters?
Vinyl gutter is loved because of its low prices and lightweight. However, they are susceptible to extreme temperatures and weight.
That being said, you might want to consider some other options for your gutter system.
Let’s take a look at some gutter types that may be good for your unique situation.
For homeowners on a tight budget, aluminum gutters offer the same cost-effectiveness as vinyl gutters. They are also lightweight and easy to install.
To add to that, they are also rust-proof.
As far as durability is concerned, aluminum gutters are far more durable than vinyl.
They have one major downside though, and that’s their poor resistance to hits. They can easily be dented when hit with a hailstorm, so you should keep this in mind before you buy.
Steel gutters are among the most durable in the market. And what makes them a great option is their ability to last long, as they can resist extreme weather events.
You’d be glad to hear that galvanized steel can resist corrosion for up to 25 years. As for stainless steel gutters, well they don’t even rust at all.
As you can imagine, such resistant abilities won’t come at a cheap price, which is why they are more expensive than vinyl and aluminum gutters.
One of the best all-weather gutters is copper, as it is known to resist the forces of basically any type of climate.
They cost far more than all the other gutter options I’ve mentioned so far, but they offer the best value for money, as they can last a lifetime without the need for replacement.
Are Aluminum Gutters Better Than Vinyl?
Aluminum gutters share some major characteristics with vinyl. And one of them is their lightweight and ease of installation.
So if you’re looking for a gutter type that you can install yourself, then both can serve as good options.
They are also both affordable, so you won’t have to worry too much about your budget when going for any of each.
Another thing they have in common is their ability to resist rust, so if that is your concern, then you can go for any of them.
Durability is the major factor that separates these two gutter types. Vinyl material is prone to damage by extreme cold or heat, but the same cannot be said of aluminum gutters, which have better resistance and can last longer.
Although they are best used in areas that don’t experience heavy hail storms, as hail is known to dent aluminum.
That being said, I advise you to weigh both of their pros and can ns before you make your final decision.
Should You Install Vinyl Gutters?
No. A lot of homes have replaced lots of plastic gutters, and here are some of the reasons why we will not install them.
(a) The sun will break down the plastic within a decade and they will become very brittle.
(b) The rubber seals that join plastic gutters at every 10-foot section are made of cheap rubber and they usually fail in even less time than the gutters.
(c) The exterior supports are unsightly. Do you want to look at your home and see it look like it has exterior plumbing on it?
(d) Plastic gutters are not recyclable, which means we have to pay an extra dump fee to get rid of them. Therefore adding to the landfill problem. Services also have to charge more for removal to cover the disposal cost.
(e) The connecting parts are so expensive, it can cost almost as much as hiring to install aluminum gutters.
(f) Many companies will not install plastic gutters, because they do not believe in planned obsolescence! It goes against ethics.
Many homes have replaced lots of plastic gutters, and here are some of the logical reasons why out of all the possible types of gutters to choose from, they are simply a waste of money.
Plastic gutters are even worse than steel gutters. They may not rust, but the sun will break down the plastic within a decade and they become brittle.
The rubber seals that join plastic gutters at every 10-foot section are made of cheap rubber and they fail in even less time than the gutters. The exterior supports are unsightly.
Vinyl is best suited for the do-it-yourself due to its ease of cutting, joining, assembling, etc. and it is usually the least expensive method.
Vinyl gutters are more susceptible to Ultra-violet radiation and over time may dis-color. Plastic gutters are also susceptible to cracking in cold climates and warping in warm climates.
Is Vinyl is a good choice due to its lightweight and affordability? Yes, but it doesn’t hold up well under heavy weight or extreme temperatures.
Consider the other gutter options in this article, and determine which is best before you make your final decision.