Copper Gutters Portland Oregon
Copper Gutters – Are They Worth It?
Copper gutters are one of the most popular home design features in today’s market. It’s easy to see why. When they’re brand new, the shiny copper finish really catches the eye. And as they turn green, they lend your home a classic antique look that you can’t get from standard aluminum gutters.
If you’re thinking about copper gutters, it’s no surprise. However, you may be concerned about the cost, installation, and maintenance. This is also understandable. Copper gutters certainly cost more than aluminum gutters. But in the long term, the investment can be well worth your time and money.
Aluminum gutters have been the industry standard for many years. They’re affordable, durable, and easy to maintain. That said, they can't add the same level of flair to your home. So, is upgrading to copper worth your time and money? Let’s take a closer look.
Pros and Cons of Copper Gutters
Whether or not you should install a set of copper gutters depends on a few factors.
To begin with, let’s state the obvious: they’re absolutely gorgeous. You may have seen them on another home or in a home improvement magazine. They add a touch of elegance, not only improving your home’s appearance but boosting it’s curb appeal. Depending on the architecture, they can accentuate a classic appearance. This is particularly true on Victorian and other older-looking homes.
But the benefits are not only cosmetic. In addition to being beautiful, copper is also a sturdier material than traditional aluminum. Where aluminum gutters can get dented, and the paint finish can be scratched, copper gutters are tougher. That’s why copper roofs are also popular.
That said, copper doesn’t pair well with all homes. For example, if you own a contemporary, modern-looking home, you might do better with a traditional aluminum gutter system in a unique color. Furthermore, when it comes to rain gutters, Portland, Oregon provides some unique challenges. Specifically, copper oxidizes over time, and will turn green very quickly in Portland’s rainy climate.
Another potential issue is that not all neighborhoods allow copper gutters. Yes, we’re talking about homeowners’ associations (HOAs). Of course, HOAs offer many benefits, such as cleaner neighborhoods. But regarding copper gutters, Portland area HOAs are mixed. Some allow them, while others forbid them. Take a drive around your neighborhood and see if any of your neighbors have copper gutters. And if there’s still any doubt, check your HOA handbook or talk to the head of your HOA.
Finally, copper gutters cost more than aluminum gutters. This may or may not be a concern for you. If you’ve got money to burn, it’s merely a cosmetic matter. But if the upgrade is going to burn a hole through your wallet, you may want to reconsider. On the other hand, you’ll also want to consider the benefits of increased curb appeal. In the Northwest, gutters are a major part of a home’s appearance.
So if you want to get the best value when you sell your home, copper gutters are a solid option.
Copper Gutter Installation
When installing a copper gutter system, it’s important to remember that you can’t mix and match materials. In other words, end caps, elbows, and downspouts also need to be made of copper. Other materials can potentially rust, staining your beautiful copper components.
To get the best price on installation, it’s important to shop around. Thankfully, there are several Portland-area installers, such as Stumptown Gutters, who offer copper gutter installation.
Copper Gutter Maintenance
As with any gutter system, you’ll need to clean your copper gutters regularly. Leaves, tree pods, and small twigs will eventually clog the downspouts. Furthermore, debris can actually stain the copper, ruining the appearance. If you’re cleaning your own gutters, rather than hiring a service, make sure to use plastic tools, not metal. Metal tools will easily scratch the finish, which can cause significant damage over time.
Similarly, you don’t want to use bare hands to clean your gutters. Number one, you’ll get your hands covered in gunk. Number two, the oil on your fingers can ruin the patina, leading to corrosion. Finally, don’t lean your ladder directly against the gutters. In the best case scenario, you’ll scratch them. In the worst case scenario, you can actually bend them.
As we briefly mentioned, copper gutters will slowly turn a classic, Statue of Liberty green as they age. This is due to oxidation, when the surface has a chemical reaction with the air and the rain. Many people like this look, and it doesn’t damage your gutters. That said, if you want to keep the bright, shiny look, you can use a copper polish to keep your gutters clear of oxidation. Keep in mind, though, that this will require a lot of elbow grease.
Stumptown Gutters Portland Oregon