The Thankless Hero of Your Roof

Gutters aren't very glamorous, but they're enormously important in maintaining a leak-free home. General knowledge of what a gutter system is made up of, different types of gutter shapes and the best gutter materials can help homeowners with repair or replacement decisions.

Gutters 101

A gutter system ordinarily consists of a gutter, an end cap, a downspout, brackets or hangers and one or more elbows. Gutters are installed along the roof's fascia with fascia brackets, which hold it upright to maintain an even slope from the high point to the end cap. The end cap is the barrier at the low end of the gutter that keeps water from spouting off the edge and onto whatever might be below.

Elbows are pieces that resemble accordion shapes and connect the gutter to the downspout and are sometimes used to create angles in the downspout if necessary. The downspout itself is the tube that contains water flowing from the gutter to the ground; an elbow is usually placed at the end of the downspout to direct the water outwards like the end of a slide..

Gutter Shapes



K-style gutters are flat on the bottom and in the back. They usually have some kind of decorative shape on the front face meant to emulate crown molding with variously detailed ogees. K-style gutters are attached to the building fascia with brackets.



Half-round gutters are round-bottomed and usually less ornate than K-style gutters; they are common on older homes and are frequently attached to the roof fascia with gutter spikes or hangers instead of brackets. Whatever the shape of the gutter, there are always options for gutter covers.

Gutter Materials

The two main gutter materials are metal and vinyl. Vinyl gutters are inexpensive but are not as rigid as metal, which means that they are more susceptible to punctures, dents and warping. Metal gutters are generally agreed to be the superior choice and a better investment in the long run and they require very little maintenance. Metal types include copper, zinc, steel and aluminum.

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Feeling Overwhelmed?

You can trust our roofing experts at All Around Roofing to give you the best options and services when it comes to all things roof-related. If you have any further questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to give us a call and we’ll ensure that you feel comfortable and informed on all of your roof services.

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