Of all they types of gutters available in today's market, wood gutters remain the most costly and most time consuming to install. These days, homeowners use wood gutters only during restoration projects in which adhering to original materials and design are of the utmost importance.
Wood gutters commonly measure 4 x 6 inches, and are sold in 10- and 20-foot lengths. Homeowners can expect to pay between $10 and $12 per linear foot for 4 x 4 inch gutters and between $16 and $18 per linear foot for 4 x 6 inch gutters. Fir gutters are the least expensive, costing approximately $10 per linear foot. Upkeep includes keeping the gutters well oiled to prevent drying and cracking.
Wood gutters commonly come in three varieties: clear fir, cedar, or redwood. Although expensive to install, wood gutters, when properly cared for, outlast many other types of gutters. Redwood carries the reputation of being the most durable, lasting up to 100 years. Fir is known to last up to 50 years with proper maintenance.
Where to Find Wood Gutters
Although there seems to be many local servicing companies for wood gutters, suppliers remain less prominent. Blue Ox Millwork is perhaps the best-known manufacturer of wood gutters and offers a wide variety of designs. Local carpenters and craftsmen may present additional options.
Typically, wood gutters can only be used in custom building or restoration projects. Experts recommend using scarfed joints with a design that accommodates proper sealing, such as beveled splices. In addition, the inside leg of the gutter should stand one-eighth to one-quarter inch higher than the outer leg to direct excess water away from the house.
Wood gutters typically employ leaders made from copper, black iron, or PVC. For homeowners wishing to mask the use of alternative materials, leaders may be boxed in with wood, or painted.