types of gutters

4 Types of Gutters That Will Transform Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Most people overlook gutters’ role in a house’s appearance, especially in the curb area. This post looks at the four types of gutters you can use to make a statement and enhance your home’s curb appeal.

4 Types of Gutters:

1. Half-Round Gutters

These gutters have a curved lip and semicircular design. It’s because of their round design that they also feature circular downspouts. 

Half-round gutters are available in 6- and 5-inch widths. A majority of houses built before and up to 1960 have these gutters. So, they work well in brick or historic houses.

Some local regulations may require installing half-round gutters if you live in a historic neighborhood.

Pros of Half-Round Gutters

  • They are suited for areas that experience heavy rainfall and are highly durable.
  • They possess a traditional, attractive design that will boost your house’s curb appeal.

Cons of Half-Round Gutters

  • More susceptible to debris accumulation
  • It can be expensive and challenging to install

2. K-Style Gutters

These types of gutters are the most popular as they are easy to install, especially if you like DIY. K-style gutters are similar to half-round gutters, for they come in 6-to-5-inch widths. The difference is that K-style gutters have rectangular downspouts.

Thanks to their flattened backs, you don’t require brackets to nail K-style gutters on your fascia boards. However, it’s more difficult to clean these gutters as their inner angles collect debris easily.

Pros of K-Style Gutters

  • An affordable and standard option
  • They don’t require brackets to place on fascia boards.

Cons of K-Style Gutters

  • They have an angled profile which makes them challenging to clean.

3. Box-Style Gutters

These are oversized gutters specifically designed to deal with heavy rainfall. Box gutters come in 8- or 7-inch widths, though some can go up to 10 inches. 

Because of their vast size, experts recommend box-style gutters for large roofs. So, you will find them mostly on industrial or commercial buildings.

Additionally, you can’t hang box gutters on a roof’s edge. Instead, you will require a high back section under your roof’s shingles. Therefore, you can only install these gutters when the house is still under construction.

Pros of Box-Style Gutters

  • More durable compared to other designs
  • Abel to withstand heavy rainfall

Cons of Box-Style Gutters

  • Expensive to install 
  • Minimal aesthetic appeal

4. Custom Fascia Gutters

These are customized gutters that have a contemporary seamless look. You will need to work with a professional to install fascia gutters. The professional will create a personalized system using a long aluminum piece. The aluminum is tailor-made to meet your roof’s pitch and home measurements.

Also, it’s worth noting that fascia gutters cost almost twice the price of K-style or half-round gutters.

Pros of Custom Fascia Gutters

  • Can handle heavy rainfall 
  • Securely attached to your house’s fascia boards, so they can’t fall off easily.

Cons of Custom Fascia Boards

  • Hard to install 
  • Require frequent cleaning

Gutter Materials

Aluminum Gutters

They are rust-resistant, lightweight, and easy to use if you enjoy DIY. Aluminum gutters have a 20-to-30-year lifespan, though they are more likely to develop cracks.

Copper Gutters

Extremely durable, copper gutters don’t bend, rust, or warp when faced with severe weather conditions. Also, they give your house a unique look. However, copper gutters are costly, and you will need a professional to install them.

Zinc Gutters

These are the easiest-to-maintain gutter options. Zinc gutters have an inbuilt sealing patina that prevents the formation of cracks and scratches.

Due to their study nature, you avoid frequent gutter repairs in their up to 80-year lifespan.

Vinyl Gutters

Vinyl gutters are cheap and straightforward to install, making them a favorite among DIYers. Made from PVC and plastic, vinyl gutters have a short lifespan compared to other systems; they can last 10 to 20 years.

In addition, these gutters deteriorate fast, more so in wet climates. If you live in highly humid areas, it would be preferable to consider metal gutters like copper or steel.

Galvanized Steel Gutters

Compared to aluminum gutters, galvanized steel gutters are sturdier and more durable. However, you will need a professional to install them, as they require soldering. These gutters do well on houses that experience a lot of rainfall and hot seasons. 

Galvanized steel gutters can last 20 to 30 years, though they can quickly develop rust if you don’t maintain them correctly.

Let the Professionals at Sixpenny in Northern Virginia Help

Consider the information above to decide which gutter style and material best suits your home’s design and needs. Also, it’s better to involve a professional as it would ensure proper gutter installation.

We at Sixpenny Chimney have well-trained professionals ready to help you choose a gutter style, handle the installation and do regular maintenance. Contact us for a quote today.

Several birds sitting in a gutter on top of a roof as one of the common gutter problems homeowners face.

6 Most Common Gutter Problems to Look Out For

Rainwater gutters provide a simple yet necessary solution by preventing water from running off rooftops while it rains. They also protect the foundation and walls of your building from getting damaged by rainwater.

However, you can face many structural and safety issues when gutters stop functioning correctly. So, to avoid such a scenario, we have outlined six of the most common gutter problems you can check for and how to solve them early on.

6 Most Common Gutter Problems Homeowners Face with Solutions

1. Blocked Gutters

While gutters are primarily designed to catch and direct water running off the roof, they also, unfortunately, hold other materials in the process. These materials include twigs, leaves, and other items blown by the wind into them, and when these items build up after some time, they cause blockages.

Once your gutters are blocked, they won’t be able to drain the rainwater effectively and will start overflowing.


Get a ladder and check where there is a blockage in the gutter system; this could be in the hopper head or downpipe. After identifying the material, proceed to remove all of it, then pour some water to check that it flows smoothly.

2. Sagging Gutters

Gutters will start sagging when they have too much weight inside them that the support brackets can’t manage. The excess weight can result from blockages, snow build-up in winter, or improper system installation.

Experts advise that gutters support brackets are installed at least 1 meter apart or closer if you are in an area experiencing heavy snowfall or with a steep roof. Also, support brackets should be 150mm after any stop end, joint, or bend.

When your gutters lack sufficient support brackets, you will encounter frequent sagging.


Remove all the debris present, as they cause blockage and add unnecessary stress on supports and joints.

Install snow guards to prevent snow from accumulating in the gutters. When you let the snow increase, it can become surprisingly heavy. So, installing the guards will hold off the snow mounds and allow the melt water to run undisturbed.

You should also add more support brackets to hold the gutters firmly in place.

3. Plants Growing in Gutters

Once you see flowers, weeds, or grass growing in your gutters, it’s a sign they haven’t been cleaned for a long time. When debris like soil and rainwater mix, it creates an ideal environment for plant growth.

The plants will cause a blockage and even attract squirrels, mice, birds, and rats.


Clean the gutters regularly to reduce the chances of soil or debris building up to host wayward seeds.

4. Incorrect Gutter Fall

If all your gutters are perfectly level, there won’t be any gravity to push water to the downpipe when it rains. So, some water could remain on the channels after rainfall instead of flowing down.

Worse yet, when there is heavy rainfall, the gutters won’t be able to drain the water quickly, and they will overflow. If you have observed that your gutters are constantly overflowing, yet, they aren’t clogged; it might be due to an incorrect fall.

A gentle fall into the downpipe will increase the gutters’ capacity and help prevent such issues.


Take out all the support brackets and install each so that they gently angle down the gutters to the downpipe.

5. Inadequate Guttering

If your gutter system isn’t correctly sized to meet your property needs, it could be why you always have issues like overflows, clogging, and flooding.

Your roof’s surface area, slope angle, and rainfall intensity in your area all determine the style and size of the gutter required.


Try and increase the system’s capacity by ensuring it has a sufficient fall or add more downpipes. However, doing so can be costly, so replacing the current system with a new one that’s correctly sized is a better option.

6. Water Freezing in Gutters

During winter, when the temperatures are low, water in the gutters will condense into ice. Once water shifts to ice, it expands and then when there’s heat, and the ice melts into water, it contracts.

The repetitive cycle of expanding and contracting can damage your gutters by distorting their shape, splitting joints, and loosening push-fit brackets.


The only option here is to pour warm water into the gutters so it melts away the ice. The problem is, doing so speeds up the contraction and will still affect the system.

Ideally, it is preferable to prevent the problem from arising by cleaning the gutters and checking that they gently slope to the downpipe to avoid water accumulating in them.

Sixpenny Chimney — Professionals in Gutter Repair, Cleaning & More

Hopefully, we have outlined common gutter problems you are facing and provided a solution for how to solve it. However, if you have difficulty cleaning or removing debris, contact Sixpenny Chimney in Northern Virginia today or give us a call at 703-491-8697. Our dedicated team is ready to handle all your gutter needs.

A dirty, clogged gutter causing home problems as a result of not cleaning gutters regularly.

8 Consequences of Not Cleaning Your Gutters

Every year when it’s almost spring or fall, you’ll see numerous adverts and campaigns reminding you to do a dreaded and tiresome task, cleaning your gutters. It’s a chore most people avoid, for it’s exhausting and risky, as you will have to climb a ladder.

However, not regularly cleaning your gutters can have severe consequences for your house. In this post, we will extensively look at eight problems that come from not taking care of your gutters.

1. Insect Infestation

When your gutters become clogged with organic materials and debris, they become a prime feeding ground for insects. Consequently, they will be infested by roaches, carpenter ants, termites, and other types of vermin. Some of these creatures can cause severe structural damage or even harm you when they get inside the house.

For instance, carpenter ants and termites can slowly chew through your home’s wood fascia. Therefore, you will have to replace entire building parts. Additionally, once the insects settle in, you will be faced with the extra cost of hiring a professional exterminator for multiple visits to eliminate them completely.

As a proud homeowner, you don’t want creepy crawlers or six-legged creatures walking around your bedroom or kitchen walls.

2. Structural Damage

Due to the buildup of materials inside gutters over time, you will start experiencing water leaks followed by foundation damage. The issue starts when water seeps through your fascia boards, shingles, and soffit. If not handled on time, the problem spreads to your home, basement, attic, crawl space, and walls.

If you observe some structural damage, even after cleaning the gutters, you’ll have to get larger downspouts so that they can sufficiently drain all the water. In worst-case scenarios, structural damage may include wood rot and cracks in the foundation. It’s worth noting that foundation cracks are irreversible and will require pricy repairs, so it is better to avoid them.

3. Damage to Landscaping

Clogged gutters often lead to overflows from the constant sagging. As the water seeps down, it will ruin the topsoil and, consequently, the landscaping. The excess water will also damage your flowers and other plants as it will wash away the fertile soil through erosion.

Landscaping improves the appearance of your home, so you must stay alert since it’s costly to redesign and repair.

4. Pollen and Mold-Related Allergies

When water slowly gets into your walls through the fissures, it attracts mildew or mold. Given the right conditions, a dark and humid environment, mildew and mold will spread like wildfire and quickly overrun a significant part of your house.

Eradicating these fungi once they firmly set up colonies is pricey and complicated. You may have to replace all your carpets. Furthermore, mold and mildew can cause health issues like wheezing, throat irritation, and coughing.

Experts have also found that clogged gutters trap lots of pollen grain, especially in spring; this can negatively affect people with pollen allergies.

5. Substantial Roof Damage

After heavy rainfall and your gutters aren’t clean, water will seep into tiny holes in the roof called fissures, and they will gradually expand.

People living in areas with sub-zero climates are at higher risk, as the water will freeze inside the fissures, expanding them rapidly and making holes in your roof.

6. Stained Sidings

Gutters overflowing with leaves and dirt will stain your house’s exterior. A stained exterior will make your home less appealing. Even though this isn’t as critical as structural damage, you don’t want your house to appear neglected.

Also, moisture trapped inside the debris will lead to a foul smell, which you can detect while walking around the house.

7. Safety Issues

Gutters aren’t built to carry heavy loads. So, when the leaves and sticks pile up, they place extra pressure on your gutters.

After some time, these gutters won’t be able to hold the weight and may fall off, and cause serious injuries, especially if you have pets or children playing outside.

8. Your Insurance Won’t Cover the Damages

Most homeowners take out insurance policies to cover their houses against unintentional damages.

However, if you look closely at your contract’s fine print, you will realize that it won’t cover harm resulting from negligence. Not regularly cleaning your gutters is a form of negligence.

Professional Gutter Cleaning, Repair, and More in Northern Virginia

With buildings, regular maintenance is preferable to repair. We highly recommend you stay diligent to avoid issues later on.

At Six Penny chimney, we will effectively and quickly clean your gutters saving you time and stress you could have experienced. Additionally, we will eliminate all the pesky insects and pests that may have made residence in your walls.

So feel free to contact us for a quote, and we will get back to you in no time.

5 Benefits of Regular Gutter Cleaning

Though home maintenance can be tedious, in the long run, it saves homeowners a good sum of money by avoiding damage and repairs. Roofing, chimneys, gutters, and drainage pipes should all be inspected yearly for wear, with maintenance best done before the wintry weather arrives. Here are five benefits of regular gutter cleaning that all homeowners should know.

1. Key Gutter Cleaning Benefits — Preventing Water Damage to Your Home

Guttering plays a significant role in preventing water damage to homes. Clear gutters allow rainwater to run freely and make their intended way down drainage pipes and through to stormwater drains.

Gutters blocked with vegetation, dirt, and living creatures will overflow and, instead of being diverted away from the home, will likely seep into the foundations. Where flooding is repetitive, the house foundations can be damaged, requiring expensive repair work. Other structures that can be water damaged are fascia boards, soffits, and exposed timber elements.

Additionally, water can overflow the guttering onto window frames, porches, and external equipment. So that repair bill keeps adding up!

2. Property Grounds are Saved from Flooding Damage

Blocked gutters prevent water from being sent down intended drainage pipes. As a result, the overspill of water can be significant, especially in heavy storms or an extended wet weather pattern. In these instances, water will flood to the low areas of your grounds. It can cause significant runoff and pooling damage.

It’s a dismal and disappointing experience to see your gardening and landscaping labor hours literally go down the drain as precious soil and plants are washed away. Or just as bad, seeing your vegetable and fruiting beds start sinking under a layer of mud.

3. Regular Gutter Cleaning Sends Damaging and Nuisance Pests Packing 

Birds, rodents, and numerous nasty insect pests (earwigs, centipedes, and wasps, for starters) are happy to take up temporary residence in your guttering. The more that leaves and plant refuse have lodged in your gutters, the more likely you are to have these unwelcome guests.

Dry debris makes attractive nesting material for rodents in dry weather, and insects don’t shy away from wet material at any time. The longer you have guests in your gutters, the more likely they will try and extend their territory. They will continually look for ways to get under eaves and into roof cavities, chimneys, and ceiling spaces.

And let’s not forget that disease-carrying mosquitoes need only the slightest pools of standing water to begin breeding in your gutters. Regular gutter cleaning will discourage these pests and hopefully send them packing before any real damage occurs.

4. Maximizing Roof and Guttering Life

Additional gutter cleaning benefits include maximizing the lifespan of your guttering. Avoiding blockages and water retention prevents rusting of bolts and pieces that fix the gutters to the house roof edges. As gutter cleaning is carried out, early detection of possible problems will be more likely.

If you reside in a region with icy winter weather, debris that traps water in gutters can lead to ice forming within and around the gutter structure. The ice places extra weight within the channel and strains the fixings. The result can be severe damage to the guttering structure and a hefty repair bill.

On top of this, gutter blockages can cause roofing problems. Ice within the gutters will stop water from falling freely down tiles, sheets, and shingles. A likely scenario is that ice will form at the guttering and above as it can’t freely move down the roof. Subsequently, any weaknesses or gaps in the roofing material will encourage ice to form within, forcing the material apart and causing further damage. Look out for the tell-tale signs of ceiling water spots indicating a problem with the roof.

5. Maintaining Your Curb Appeal

Gutter cleaning benefits include more than preventing damage to your home and garden. Well-cared-for guttering provides a neat and smart edging to your home, adding positively to your property’s overall look and feel.

While you may not intend to sell your property in the near future, maintaining your curb appeal and property value high is important. A good home value can translate to opportunities when negotiating for financial loans and other credit mechanisms

Get the Best in Home Maintenance Services

While you’re tackling home maintenance, don’t forget to schedule your annual chimney cleaning service with Six Penny Chimney. Our other home maintenance services include repairing masonry work, regular gutter cleaning, and pest removal. You may also want to consider getting gutter guards to discourage future lodgers and drastically reduce debris falling into the gutter channels.

Get in touch if you’re in our service area of Northern Virginia and request a free quote any time. 

Why Keeping Your Gutters Clean Can Save Your Home

Why Keeping Your Gutters Clean Can Save Your Home

No matter the style of your home or roof, you’ll have gutters installed. And those gutters quickly get clogged with fallen leaves, dirt, lichen, and even birds nests. Experts recommend you clean them out at least twice a year.

Keeping your gutters clean will save you time and money on repairs to your roof and crawlspace, walls, home interior, and even your foundations. It’ll help keep potentially expensive or unhealthy nuisances like pests, mold, and rot at bay.

If you haven’t spared your gutters a thought recently, there’s no better time like the present to turn your attention to them. Read on for the reasons why clear gutters are essential for any homeowner.

Improve Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Cleaning gutters is a simple but cost-effective way to keep the exterior of your home looking sharp. If you can see built-up debris or your gutters are overflowing with each rainfall, it’s time to give them a clear-out.

Not only that, but your garden may suffer. Overwatering can cause dead plants and trees and brown patches in your lawn. Constant overflows in the same spot can cause concrete or paved paths to buckle and decking to rot.

This is particularly important for people selling their house now or soon. Experts say that excellent curb appeal can add up to 11 percent to your home’s value.

Finally, depending on where you live, keeping your gutters clean might even be a rule. Some community management associations and HOAs require a regular clear-out for aesthetic and safety reasons.

Make Your Gutters Last Longer

Replacing guttering costs between $1,000 to $1,800 on average. However, that cost can rise as high as $5,000 depending on the materials you choose and the difficulty of the installation job.

If you’re not willing to shell out for regular gutter cleaning, you could be looking at gutter replacement much sooner than you (or your bank account) would like.

As organic matter builds up in a gutter, it can erode the material. The heavier that load becomes, the more your gutters are at risk of sagging or even breaking their mounts completely. The next big storm and entire sections of your guttering could be on the ground.

In the worst instance, the broken guttering could bring parts of your roof down with it. And that makes for an even more expensive repair job.

Keep Your Basement Dry

You spent a ton of money to renovate your basement, and now it looks beautiful. But, after a few months, you notice a musty smell. So you hunt around for the source and see water leaking in.

Where’s it coming from? It’s time to learn how to clean gutters. Urgently!

When it rains on clogged gutters, the water has nowhere to go and is forced out over the sides. As a result, it pools at the bottom of your home. Over time, this water seeps through gaps in the wall and infiltrates the basement.

The excess moisture can deteriorate the concrete or brick, ruin paint or wallpaper, and lead to the growth of harmful mildew.

Maintain a Solid Foundation

Rainwater pouring into a basement is one thing, but did you know that debris-packed home gutters can also ruin your foundations?

And this is a more serious problem to fix. Foundation repairs aren’t just expensive. They can also lower the value of your home if you ever decide to sell it.

And even worse, if you don’t notice and repair an unstable foundation, your home won’t pass an inspection.

Just like with a basement, water pours from blocked gutters and seeps into the ground at the base of your home. If you live in a cold climate, this water can freeze during the winter, cracking the foundations.

Manage Pests

Regular gutter maintenance should be part of a homeowner’s pest management routine. Congested gutters hold rainwater, and this attracts all manner of wildlife: from rodents and birds who love to drink the water to mosquitoes that like to lay their eggs in it.

These pests aren’t only pesky in the summer or when you’re trying to sleep. They can also harbor diseases that endanger the health of your family. For example, mosquitos may carry the West Nile, Zika, dengue, or chikungunya virus in certain states.

Regularly clean your gutters of plants, fallen leaves, sticks, and dirt. Gutter guards can also offer some protection, but don’t rely on them alone.

Avoid Roof Rot

The primary function of guttering is to direct rainwater away from your roof.

Most roofs in the USA are designed to channel rainwater down into gutters, where it flows down drainpipes and into municipal stormwater drains or a personal rainwater collection system.

So as you can tell, if the guttering is filled with organic matter, it won’t be able to channel that water away as it’s designed to do. The eaves of your roof will constantly be subjected to water, potentially causing roof rot, damage to tiles or other roofing materials, and degradation of the underlayment.

In the worst cases, the water infiltration could affect your decking, joists, or crawlspace, compromising the structural integrity of your home or causing mold issues.

Savvy Homeowners Keep Gutters Clean

A clean guttering system equals a healthy home and its inhabitants. You’ll reduce mold and moisture build-up, ensure you’re protected against fires and high winds, and protect your basement or foundations.

Don’t let clogged gutters be the downfall of your otherwise well-maintained property. If you don’t feel like you have the time to keep your gutters clean, schedule a twice-yearly (at minimum) appointment with a professional cleaning company.

Sixpenny Chimney & Air Duct Cleaning has been serving homeowners in Northern Virginia since 1980. If you’re in our area, don’t delay. Request a quote for gutter cleaning today.