Whether you're building a new home or renovating your existing properties, your rain gutters shouldn't be an afterthought. Rain gutters act as your home's external drainage system, and your choice will determine the longevity of the gutters, along with how much ongoing maintenance will be required. There are a number of different factors that will influence your decision.
In terms of the lifespan of your home's gutters, metal is your best choice. While vinyl guttering is the most cost-effective option, this will not handle the Australian climate as well as its metal cousins. Vinyl guttering can become brittle, and when the material is cut to fit your specific roof, rubber seals will be added between the sections, and these seals can likewise become brittle, compromising the gutters overall efficiency. Aluminium is your best bet. It's more expensive than vinyl guttering, but corrosion is unlikely to be an issue.
The aesthetics of your guttering will also play a role, as in, what will the end product look like when it has been installed? Both vinyl and metallic guttering are available in a wide range of colours to match (or at least complement) the look of the primary structure. Alternatively, you can leave metal gutters in their original colour, although this creates a somewhat industrial look, which might not suit all properties. Regardless of the material, a facade can be created to house the gutters, making them look more like part of the roof, rather than an addition around the edges of the roof.
Cleaning the Gutters
Residential gutter installation should go hand in hand with some type of gutter guard. This guard is designed to prevent any debris from entering the guttering, greatly minimising the chance of your gutters becoming blocked. It also means that you won't need to clean your gutters with any regularity. A basic guard is essentially tubing in the gutter with the upper section forming a concave surface so that debris passes straight over it, before falling to the ground. The tubing has small gaps to allow water to enter while keeping debris out. Another type of gutter guard looks like an extension of your roof, with a flat top that extends outwards with a curved edge. Water passes over the top of the guard and over the curved edge, where it's fed into a small opening, entering the gutter itself.
Your choice of gutters really depends on the look you want to achieve, along with your budget, but some form of gutter guard is going to be useful. reach out to a contractor in your area to get help with residential gutter installation.