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When You Should Be Using Half-Round Gutters vs. K-Style for Your Home

Today, most homes in the US utilize K-style gutters. They are incredibly effective, and they can be quite attractive. However, as time goes by, more and more homeowners are beginning to discover the benefits associated with half-round gutters. There are some subtle differences between the two styles in both appearance and function, so understanding these will help you make better decisions about your purchase.

Why K-Style Gutters are So Popular

K-style gutters have been designed to fit today’s more modern homes. They are flat on the side that attaches to the home, which means they can be installed directly to the fascia with fewer brackets and accessories. They come in various lengths and sizes, and you can find them in both traditional and seamless styles. They have been designed to work with angular roof designs that have become more common over the last century here in the United States, and that is why they are more popular than other gutter styles.

The Increasing Popularity of Half-Round Gutters

Despite the fact that many homes in the US have angular roofs and architectural designs, some homes – and especially historic homes built before the 1950s have more rounded features. When restoring these homes, the owners often want to do their very best to revive the original look and design but add modern features to protect the structure and the surrounding landscape. This has driven the popularity of half-round gutters in recent years.

Half-round gutters are different in style because rather than having a flat side, they resemble a tube that has been cut in half. They have a very symmetrical U-shape that complements the rounded architecture associated with many older homes and even newer structures designed to be less angular. However, when properly installed on even modern homes, half-round gutters can provide a different sort of aesthetic appeal, and according to some, better function than their K-style counterparts.

Benefits of Half-Round Gutters

Half-round gutters present numerous benefits to homeowners in different situations. These include:

  • Simpler, cleaner lines. In newer homes, and for luxury homes with more unusual architecture, the simple and clean lines provided by a half-round gutter system complement heavy textures like slate and tile.
  • Smoother shape. The smooth shape reduces the likelihood of corrosion since there are fewer areas where water can gather.
  • Easier to clean. The smoother shape also allows debris to flow through the gutters more freely instead of getting caught on rough edges or sides, which can lead to clogs.

If you are curious about the best time to consider half-round gutters as opposed to K-style, it is really a matter of preference. Half-round gutters are better in locations where significant winter precipitation is likely, for homes and buildings with a more rounded architecture style, and for homes with heavily textured materials like shake, slate, and tile on the exterior.

Author: Mike Milliman

Mike is managing partner at Gutter Supply Inc. and has over 20 years of experience in the industry. His expertise and vast knowledge of the industry, along with his priority on customer service, has contributed to the continued success of Gutter Supply, it’s contractor customers and homeowner DIY’s.

11 thoughts on “When You Should Be Using Half-Round Gutters vs. K-Style for Your Home”

  1. Are half rounds and ther brackets stronger than k style gutters,so they would be able to withstand the extreme vibration and weight of heavy snow and ice sliding off a slate roof with a snow belt in New England? And if so would you be able to name a few contractors in the Western, Massachusetts area who order half rounds from you and have experience installing them? Thank you.

    1. They definitely can be if you use the correct gutter brackets. Please call us at 888-909-7246 and ask for Phil. He will be able to walk you through our options and point you in the right direction.

  2. I’d say half round gutters are only good for certain properties if your trying to match what was existing for aesthetic purposes .As far as being functional and getting the most water away from your home K style is a deeper gutter and will handle more water as well as having no leaks between the gutter and the facia due to the back of the gutter being flat and mounting tight to the facia board and if installed correctly it will also be partially under the drip edge at the high point and flashed the rest of the way depending on how much pitch is needed and how long the gutter spans. Half round gutters require brackets that install behind the gutter which makes it stick out 1/4-1/2” from the facia board leaving that gap for water to go behind and in a lot of cases half round gutters are installed in sections leaving room for more potential leaks as the seal between pieces deteriorates over time.(In my 25 years of gutter installation experience I have never seen a company that actually owns a half round seamless gutter machine)All my half round removal has always been sections and either copper or galvanized.Also there’s not many options for covers or screens that work very well for half round .The k style also has mass options for different types of covers that can make your gutters almost maintenance free if you know what to choose..(Theres nothing out there that’s 100% )

  3. I would say that half-rounds are entirely superior to K.

    – much easier to clean,
    – much more aesthetically pleasing,
    – much better shape to allow the free flow of debris normally and when cleaning,
    – stronger by shape,
    – they can easily be removed for painting behind/around.
    – and above all, none of the hangers hold the gutter against the fascia board and retain moisture to promote rot.

  4. I completely agree with you especially the lack of facia boards rotting. Plus round guttering just looks better.

  5. My K gutters have a flashing edge that goes under the roof tiles and protects the fascia. Is half round made with the same edge flashing?

    1. Not typically. We do carry high back gutters (which have the flashing attached to the gutters) in both K style and Half Round, however we only offer it in Copper.

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