The red color ladder in near roof in home at Woodinville, WA

What is the Difference Between Residential and Commercial Gutters?

Before learning how residential and commercial gutters differ, it’s important to know that properties of all kinds benefit from rain gutters. It doesn’t matter whether you live in a single-family home or run a retail shop, office, or warehouse—if it rains in your area, your building needs gutters. This is particularly true in Washington, which is known for its overcast, rainy weather.

It’s easy to picture residential gutters running along the edge of the roof and diverting water away from the foundation with a few strategically placed downspouts. But if you own a commercial property, you need specific gutters suitable for the building in question. Learn more here before you contact a commercial guttering supplier.

What are Commercial Gutters Called?

Box gutters are the preferred choice for many commercial properties. These are larger and can handle more water than traditional half-round or K-style gutters commonly installed on residential buildings. They are called box gutters because they are square-shaped and boxed-in on all sides.

What Do Commercial Gutters Look Like?

While residential gutters often have a decorative look to them, commercial gutters are all business. Their boxy shape makes them simple in appearance and efficient in passing the highest volume of water possible from the roof.

What are Commercial Gutters Made Of?

Sturdiness is a top priority for commercial gutters, so they are often made of durable aluminum, galvanized steel, stainless steel, or copper. Vinyl gutters are rarely used on commercial buildings. In fact, this material is losing favor among homeowners as well because it has a relatively short life expectancy. Deciding what commercial gutter material to install typically comes down to aesthetics and budget.

What Size Are Commercial-Grade Gutters?

Bigger isn’t always better because larger gutters collect more debris and require more cleaning and maintenance. For this reason, residential gutters are typically limited to 4 or 5 inches in diameter, suitable for removing water from the average home’s roof. On the other hand, commercial-grade gutters typically start at 6 inches to handle higher flow rates. Larger buildings may even require 7- or 8-inch box gutters to get the job done.

The Bottom Line: Follow Building Code Requirements

Most local municipalities require building owners to adhere to certain water drainage and runoff requirements. Homeowner’s associations may also limit what gutters and downspouts can look like. It’s important to follow these rules to avoid fines and penalties. If you’re unsure what gutters you should install on your residential or commercial building, contact a licensed gutter installer for help. For reliable commercial gutter installation in Snohomish or King County, turn to High Point Gutter. We have years of experience installing gutters on multifamily properties and other commercial buildings. With our help, your gutters will look great and work properly from day one. Keep them in good condition for years to come by relying on us for commercial gutter cleaning and repairs as well. To request a commercial guttering installation estimate, please call us at (425) 449-6622 or contact us online today.