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Copper Gutters: Pros and Cons

Copper Gutters: Pros and Cons

Few things provide more beauty and character to a home than copper gutters. Often seen on historic homes, copper ages naturally with your home, slowly developing a patina over time that enriches and deepens the beauty of your homes curb appeal. Copper gutters are not for everyone, however; make sure that you understand the pros and cons of their use before you to make the decision of what gutter material to use on your home.

Copper Gutter Pros

The biggest advantage to using copper gutters on your home is their style and beauty. Copper gutters are usually more decorative than the traditional K-style gutters that can be found in vinyl, aluminum, or zinc. In addition, copper is often unexpected in this area of the home, so it creates an extremely dramatic look when seen from the street.

Copper has what is known as a living finish, so over time the appearance of the gutters will change to reflect their environment. This process only helps enhance the gutter’s beauty and appeal.

The second advantage to using copper gutters is their longevity. While it does weather, copper doesn’t rust, nor is it likely to wear out, crack, or develop other problems over time. Therefore, a set of copper gutters are unlikely to need to be replaced for 50 or more years, provided that you maintain them properly and keep them running free of clogs.

Copper Gutter Cons

The biggest drawback to copper gutters is the price. While aluminum gutters can be found for as little as $3 a length, copper starts around $18. In addition, when using copper gutters, all the fittings, nails, and fasteners must be copper as well. Using another material, such as aluminum, will actually corrode the copper, so you need to ensure that every piece of your gutter system is made of copper – even the pieces you can’t see. This only adds to the price of the system.

Additionally, copper gutters are usually made to order for your home. This can be beneficial from the standpoint that there are often no seams or potential places for the gutters to leak, but it also means that you will need to find a craftsman that can not only work with copper, but who can manufacturer the gutters specifically for your home. This adds considerable time and expense to the project, so if your current gutters are leaking and you want to get them replaced this weekend, you will likely need to choose a material other than copper to get the job done.

Copper is also more difficult to work with than other metals because it requires additional soldering at its joints. For this reason, you will need to ensure that you have an installer who has worked with copper extensively in the past and understands its needs. In addition to this, this extra difficulty in installation often increases the expense, so the same installer may quote you a much higher price for the installation of copper gutters than they would custom made zinc or aluminum gutters.

Consider Copper

Despite their price tag, copper gutters can lend a lot of style and beauty to your home. If you’re willing to take the time to find a craftsman that can work with the material, and you don’t mind paying the price, copper gutters can be a beautiful addition to any home.


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