In recent years, more and more homeowners are making the switch from the standard 5-inch gutter to the oversize or commercially-sized 6-inch gutter. With that in mind, you may be wondering if the larger gutter size would benefit your home or if you would be better off sticking with the industry standard.
Let’s start by discussing the benefits of 6-inch gutters and then delve into the ways to decide what gutter size will be right for your residence!
What Are the Benefits of 6” Gutters?
You might think that a 1-inch increase in gutter size would not make that big of a difference in performance. Surprisingly, 6-inch gutters can handle a significantly larger amount of water. In addition, the larger gutters can better handle debris and are less prone to clogging from leaves and other common items that get flushed down into your gutters.
Are There Larger Gutter Options?
In addition to 6-inch size, gutters can also be purchased in 7-inch and 8-inch sizes. It is important to keep in mind that those sizes are generally designed for use in commercial buildings with large roof surface areas. Not only would 7-inch or 8-inch gutters be overkill for the amount of water flow that comes off of a residential roof, but they would probably look a little ridiculous, as well.
How to Determine the Ideal Gutter Size for My Home
The best gutter size for your home will depend on a handful of factors. The most obvious is the actual square footage of your roof. This information can be gathered with a few simple measurements.
One characteristic of your roof is the pitch or angle of decline. Steeper roofs will allow water to run down faster than a roof with a gradual pitch, which can make smaller 5-inch gutters overflow more easily. Metal roofs will also increase the speed at which water flows off of your roof and should be taken into account when making your decision.
Modern homes tend to have more complex roof lines, including smaller surface areas that shed water down onto a larger, lower surface area. This style of roof often has upper gutters that drain down into lower gutters. If your home has this feature, then the lower gutters would benefit from being upgraded to 6-inch gutters to prevent overflows.
The last consideration in your ideal gutter size is the style of gutter that you’ll be using. K-style gutters tend to be deeper and offer better waterflow than the half-round gutters. As a general rule, half-round gutters would almost always serve you better when they are sized at 6 inches.
The Bottom Line
While bigger gutters are not necessarily always better, upgrading to a 6-inch gutter might definitely be a solution to frequent overflow problems. However, it is important to make sure that your gutters aren’t simply overflowing due to clogs or damage. Once you’ve checked for these things, if you are still experiencing subpar draining, then 6-inch gutters might be just what you need.