Gutter Replacement Cost Guide
Gutters are just as important as the roof over your head. They keep rain and melted snow away from the foundation, which could cause water damage, mold, and other serious damage. The average gutter replacement cost is $600 – $8,000, depending on the size, type of gutter, and where you live.
The average homeowner pays $2,000 – $3,000 for vinyl gutter installation, the most common material.
What Affects Gutter Installation Costs?
Several factors determine your gutter installation costs. Here’s what to consider:
1. Labor Costs
The cost of labor for gutter installation depends on several factors, such as the size and complexity of your roof, the type and style of gutters you choose, the condition of your fascia boards and soffits (the wooden structures that support your gutters), the number of downspouts and accessories you need and the experience and reputation of your contractor.
2. The Chosen Material
Like any home improvement or repair, the materials determine the cost. Most homeowners choose vinyl gutters because they are the most cost-effective, but other options include aluminum, galvanized steel, and copper gutters, which are more expensive.
Vinyl gutters are the most cost-effective but the least durable. They require the most frequent replacement and don’t work well in areas with excessive rain or snow. The average cost is $2 – $6 per square foot.
Aluminum gutters are suitable for homes with complex shapes, as aluminum maneuvers easily. They are slightly sturdier than vinyl, lasting as long as 20 years, and rust-resistant. The cost of aluminum gutters varies by thickness; the thicker the gutter, the more they cost. They can cost as much as $15 per square foot.
Galvanized steel gutters are sturdier than aluminum gutters and can last as long as 30 years. However, they have a downside. They require professional installation, which increases the gutter installation cost. Unlike aluminum steel gutters, rust; however, they can withstand more rain or melted snow.
As you can imagine, metal gutters are the most expensive but last the longest, sometimes as long as 50 years. Another downside, however, is they require a lot of maintenance and, if not maintained, can develop a film over them. Copper gutters cost as much as $50 per square foot.
3. The Size of the Home
Gutter installation costs are per square foot, so the larger your house, the more they will cost. For example, a two-story house costs more than a single-story one because of the more significant gutter material required.
4. Type of Gutter
You have two options when choosing gutters, sectional and seamless.
Sectional gutters are good for DIY homeowners who want to install the gutters themselves and seamless gutters require professional installation.
Sectional gutters are made of pre-cut pieces that are joined together with connectors, brackets or screws. They are easier and cheaper to install than seamless gutters, but they have more seams that can leak or clog over time.
Seamless gutters are custom-made to fit your roof’s dimensions using a special machine that extrudes metal into long continuous pieces. They have fewer joints and seams than sectional gutters, which reduces the risk of leaks and maintenance.
Seamless gutters are more durable and aesthetically pleasing than sectional gutters, but they are also more expensive and require professional installation.
Sectional gutters are available in vinyl, copper, aluminum, and steel. Seamless is only available as aluminum, steel, or copper.
5. Gutter Styles
Another factor that affects the cost of gutter replacement is the style or shape of gutters you choose. There are two common styles of gutters: K-style and half-round.
K-style gutters have a flat bottom and back with a decorative front that resembles a crown molding. They are the most popular style of gutters in the US because they can hold more water than half-round gutters and blend well with most architectural styles. K-style gutters come in various sizes, ranging from 4 inches to 6 inches in width.
Half-round gutters have a semicircular shape that gives them a classic look. They are more common in older homes or historical buildings because they match their traditional design. Half-round gutters come in various sizes, ranging from 5 inches to 8 inches in width.
6. Gutter Size
Typical gutters come in 5-inch widths. If you need/want a wider gutter, it will increase the gutter replacement cost. Typically, each inch adds $1 – $5 per foot and can go up to six inches.
Other Factors Affecting Gutter Replacement Costs
Besides the type, style, size and material of gutters, there are several other factors that can affect the cost of gutter replacement including:
- Roof pitch: The slope or angle of your roof can affect the difficulty and safety of gutter installation. A steeper roof may require more labor, materials and equipment than a flatter roof. A steeper roof may also need more downspouts to handle the water flow.
- Roof height: The height of your roof can affect the accessibility and safety of gutter installation. A higher roof may require more labor, materials and equipment than a lower roof. A higher roof may also need longer downspouts and ladders or scaffolding to reach the gutters.
- Roof condition: The condition of your roof can affect the quality and durability of your gutters. If your roof has damaged shingles, flashing or vents, you may need to repair them before installing new gutters. Otherwise, you may end up with leaks or water damage in your attic or walls.
- Gutter accessories: The accessories you choose for your gutters can affect their functionality and appearance. Some common accessories include:
- Hangers: These are metal or plastic brackets that attach the gutters to the fascia boards. They come in various styles, such as hidden, strap or spike and ferrule. Hangers cost $1 to $4 each.
- Downspouts: These are vertical pipes that carry the water from the gutters to the ground or a drainage system. They come in various sizes, shapes and materials, such as round, square or rectangular and vinyl, aluminum, steel or copper. Downspouts cost $5 to $20 per linear foot depending on the type of material.
- End caps: These are metal or plastic caps that seal the ends of the gutters to prevent water from spilling out. They come in various styles and colors to match the gutters. End caps cost $1 to $3 each.
- Elbows: These are metal or plastic bends that change the direction of the downspouts. They come in various angles and sizes to fit the corners of your house. Elbows cost $3 to $10 each.
- Flashing: This is a thin sheet of metal that covers the gap between the gutters and the roof edge to prevent water from seeping behind the gutters. Flashing comes in various colors and materials, such as aluminum, steel or copper. Flashing costs $0.50 to $1 per linear foot.
- Splash blocks: These are concrete or plastic blocks that divert the water from the downspouts away from your foundation and landscaping. They come in various shapes and colors to blend with your surroundings. Splash blocks cost $5 to $10 each.
- Gutter guards: These are mesh screens, foam inserts or metal covers that prevent leaves, twigs and other debris from clogging your gutters. They come in various types and materials, such as reverse-curve, micro-mesh or perforated and vinyl, aluminum or steel. Gutter guards cost $3 to $30 per linear foot.
DIY or Professional Installation
Finally, you must consider if you want DIY or professional installation. Some materials only work with professional installers, such as steel and copper gutters. If you want to save money on labor, consider vinyl or aluminum, as they are the lightest weight and easiest to install.
If you DIY gutter installation, you can save $5 – $10 per square foot, but be sure you can handle the job. For example, you must be able to climb a ladder comfortably and be able to reach the roof. If you aren’t comfortable doing the job, it’s worth hiring professionals.
Factors that can increase labor costs include:
- Excessive corners on the home
- More than one story
- Heavy materials
- Excessive shaping
- Steep roofs
If you want to save money on gutter replacement, here are some tips you can follow:
- Compare quotes from at least three different contractors before hiring one. You can use online platforms to find reputable contractors in your area and read reviews from previous customers.
- Choose a durable and low-maintenance material for your gutters, such as aluminum or steel.
- Choose a simple and standard style and size for your gutters, such as K-style and 5 inches.
- Avoid unnecessary accessories or features for your gutters, such as copper end caps or decorative hangers.
- Schedule your gutter installation during the off-season, such as winter or early spring, when contractors may offer lower rates or discounts.
Maintenance and Repair
To keep your gutters in good condition and avoid costly repairs or replacements, you should perform regular maintenance and cleaning. Here are some tips on how to maintain and repair your gutters:
- Clean your gutters at least twice a year, preferably in the spring and fall, to remove leaves, twigs, dirt and other debris that can clog or damage them.
- Inspect your gutters for signs of wear and tear, such as cracks, holes, leaks, sagging, rust or corrosion. You can use caulk, sealant, patches or screws to fix minor issues yourself or hire a professional to take care of them from time to time.
- Replace any damaged or missing parts of your gutters, such as hangers, brackets, end caps or elbows.
- Install gutter guards or screens to prevent debris from entering your gutters and reduce the frequency of cleaning.
How long can you expect gutters to last with proper maintenance?
If gutters are well-maintained, made of durable materials like steel or copper, cleaned regularly and have the necessary accessories, they can last up to 15 – 25 years or longer depending on the material and climate. Several factors determine the lifespan of gutters including material, weather, maintenance and upkeep.
Do gutters increase the value of a home?
Yes, quality gutters made of durable materials can increase a home’s value, especially for potential buyers. When buying a home, check the gutters’ age, condition and if they are functioning properly to prevent water damage and erosion.
Are gutters essential for a home?
Gutters are a vital part of any home. They divert water away from the foundation to prevent cracks and structural damage. They channel rainwater to sidewalks, streets and storm drains to stop soil erosion. Gutters are a smart investment to avoid future structural problems and high costs. They help safeguard a home.
Many factors go into gutter replacement costs, but it’s a necessary part of your home. Vinyl and aluminum gutters need the most frequent replacement, and steel or copper gutters last longer but have a higher cost. Consider the most common gutter type in your area and talk to a professional installer to determine which option is best for your house.