When you think about having a rain gutter installed on your property, you may start asking which type of materials to choose, and you see yourself in front of your devices staring at a wide list of materials and styles of rain gutters available, feeling completely overwhelmed and confused after reading all that information, and in the end you still have the same question in your head; which one is the best material for my rain gutters? Don’t feel bad if this is happening to you; this is not an easy situation for a homeowner, since not all the information you find on the Internet comes from a reliable source, and this interferes with making a good decision when it comes to rain gutters.
You can find plenty of different rain gutter types, materials and sizes (https://raincache.ng/gutters/types-of-gutters-and-costs/), however, it’s not about which one of them is the best or the worst; it’s about which one works best for you, since every material has its advantages and drawbacks, and it is important for you to evaluate some aspects when choosing the right material for your rain gutters.
The weather – for example – is a feature that will determine which material of rain gutter is the most suitable for your home, if you have a hot weather where you live, you can not install the same rain gutters as if you live in a snowy or rainy place. This means that the material that would work for some people, will not necessarily work for you.
In this post, we will discuss one of the materials that have become very popular among homeowners and builders in Nigeria, the PVC/Plastic/Vinyl Gutters. This is a synthetic man-made material, resulting of the ethylene (found in crude oil) and chloride (found in regular salt) combination, which after being processed together, form Polyvinyl chloride (PVC).
One of the reasons PVC gutters are currently very popular in Nigeria is their low price; you can find in the market all the PVC rain gutter parts and accessories for an affordable cost compared with other materials. However, there are a lot of cheap versions that are made of a lower quality plastic, which are more prone to get cracked and they just last for a while; so be careful because what’s cheap turns out to be costly. Another benefit of this type of material, regarding its low price is the maintenance; you don’t need to spend too much money in regular maintenance services since PVC gutters when well installed, they don’t require many cares.
PVC gutters are designed to be easily installed, they come in sections that snap together at the joints; this makes them very easy to manage for both installers and homeowners. Compared with others, PVC is do-it-yourselfers’ favorite material because of their combination of practicality and ease; they perfectly fit together at the joints, and their lightweight allows you to carry them up and down the ladder without problems. Despite how simple it may seem, we always recommend looking for experienced rain gutter technicians to avoid poor installations that would end up in costly repairs.
In summary, PVC gutters are a great product in term of cost and ease of installation. The only draw-back with PVC gutters is their durability in harsh weather. If you live in a place with extreme weather, PVC gutters are more likely to flake, get cracked and easily break part resulting in leaks.
If you live in the tropics (e.g Nigeria), where there is more exposure to sunlight, PVC gutter may not be the best for your property if you are thinking long term, because of UV degradation due to exposure to high temperatures under the sun (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UV_degradation )
Heavy rains can also make PVC gutter to sag or bend eventually, so in order to get the best of gutters you need to consider this important variable.