As you probably already know, The Brothers that just do Gutters offers a number of different specialty gutter materials. Among that material list is galvanized and galvalume. We are sure many of you have wondered what exactly they are and what the difference is between the two.
What is galvanized steel?
- The galvanization of steel is a chemical process of applying a protective coating of zinc only to the steel.
- This coating helps to prevent rusting, preventing corrosive substances from reaching the more delicate part of the metal.
What is galvalume steel?
- For galvalume steel, it undergoes the same process, except the coating is a combination of aluminum, zinc alloy and silicon.
The most common method and process for creating galvalume and galvanized steel is hot-dipping. This means that the steel is completely submerged in molten zinc for galvanized and aluminum, zinc and silicon for galvalume chemically bonding the materials together.
So how do these two steels differ in short term wearing, longevity, and corrosion resistance? What makes them a good material for your gutters?
These steels are an appealing alternative to standard aluminum gutters because they are unique and give your home an added curb appeal without the high-end price tag. On average, the cost of these specialty materials in comparison to aluminum does not differ all that much.
Average industry cost by material:
- Aluminum: $6/ft – $15/ft
- Galvanized: $8/ft – $20/ft
- Galvalume: $12/ft – $30/ft
- Copper: $20/ft – $40/ft
Galvalume is more corrosion resistant than galvanized because of the barrier of protection the aluminum creates. Galvalume is also a thinner steel than galvanized making it a bit more vulnerable to scratches. These scratched areas may be more susceptible to rust however, the coating is also more flexible, helping to prevent cracks or chips when the metal bends, expands or contracts during installation or temperature changes.
When it comes to appearance, the difference between the two is the amount of shine. Galvanized steel (right) has a very shiny steel look, while galvalume (left) takes on a matte-like appearance similar to gun metal grey. Both of these steels tend to compliment modern styled homes, and tastes however, galvalume appeals more to the subtle homeowners giving off a more neutral feel.
Both steels serve to give a unique look to your home, and increase its curb appeal. The choice between galvalume vs. galvanized really depends on preference, however, as far as longevity, galvalume will very often outlast galvanized.