Tuesday, November 08, 2005

New Copper gutters

The Previous Home Owner Sage, final chapter has been written. Our new copper gutters have been installed and they do look great. The sales guy was right when he said that they would look like crown molding on my house. They actually do and they look really well integrated with the house, and of course the most important part, is they actually WORK. I left work early the other day so I could stand out in the rain (under an umbrella ) and check them out.

We had gotten a few estimates for half round copper to replace the existing half round on the house. My main issue was though I wanted leaf protection too. When a gutter company knocked on the door I was skeptical. They were selling "k style" ogee gutters with toppers. I said "I want copper" and they said "we do copper" . After going through the crap of the price, and we'll give you a discount if we can put a sign in your yard, bla bla. It's the same old story that any sales company gives you. We ended up paying $30 bucks a foot, and the sales man even admitted to me later that I could have whittled off another 500 bucks or so from their price. The company Gutter Genie. They also offered 2 years same as cash.

Despite my constant worry and my buyers remorse I agreed to let them do it. I really wanted operational gutters and these guys had what I wanted. Like I said before they work great. I did not go with their rectangular downspout, but kept my original copper round downspout. Why pay for something that already works. The sales guy was honest that topper systems like this don't block all debris, but 95% he said. "Maple seeds are problematic" he said. If I went with the rectangular downspouts then there would have been cleanouts on them. I'm going to add cleanouts later in 2006. Hopefully before our maples shed their seeds. I might order cleanouts from Slate and Copper.

The installation took a week to do, and fortunately we had nice weather. They put on a new pressure treated fascia board all the way around, and primed it. The fascia was needed to leave the correct reveal from the bottom of the last shingle to the top of the copper topper. They attached the fascia with twist shank nails every 16inches or so. The gutter its self is pretty massive. The back of the gutter covers the entire fascia. The gutters were continuous, and they use some sort of large plastic bracket to attach the gutters every 16 inches with 5 screws in each bracket. They attached the topper to that bracket too and to the back of the gutter. Then a copper drip edge. Lots of copper. My neighbors were joking the other day that I'll be out there weekly keeping them polished.

A couple of SNAFUs ensued though. Firstly it seems that Gutter Genie is an aluminum gutter company that realized they could run copper through their gutter extruder. I had to explain to them that they can not use steel zip screws on copper as you will get a galvanic reaction when they get wet. They also claimed the screws that attached the gutters to the fascia were titanium, which according to the manufacturer of the screws is totally untrue. As we live in a fairly dry area and those screws should almost never get wet then they should be ok, and they are galvanized so that will help for a while. As long as the gutters last another 30 to 40 years until I sell the house then that's fine with me. The gutter installers also dropped one of the gutters and knocked off my front porch light. I was able to get it rewired at Bernard Electric Supply Co. I got an exact match on the glass from Franklin Art Glass.


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