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Pros and Cons of Wood Gutters

wooden gutters
February 1, 2024
Amanda Curry
Read Time
3 minutes

There are many different factors involved in choosing a gutter system for your home. Price, appearance, maintenance requirements, and effectiveness are all equally important. In order to choose the right gutter system for your home, you’ll likely have to weigh the pros and cons of each type of gutter system. The bottom line is that all gutters should do one thing: divert water away from the home in order to protect your home from any sort of damage.

Wooden gutters are an older type of gutter that both look nice and are strong. Until the 1960s, when metal gutters replaced them, wood gutters were common on most homes. Today, these gutters are mostly featured in restoration work in order to maintain the period integrity of a home.

If you are considering installing wood gutters on your home, LeafFilter, the gutter experts take a minute to explain where to buy gutters and the pros and cons of purchasing a wood gutter system so that you can make an informed decision.

Advantages to Buying Wooden Gutters

Wood gutters appear very authentic and can really complement a historic home’s aesthetic. Many homeowners agree that they can add an old-fashioned, traditional look to a home.

Appearance & Effectiveness

Not only are wooden gutters beautiful, but they are generally effective at diverting rainwater away from your home. If you do opt for wood gutters, you’ll want to ensure that they contain cedar wood. Cedar wood will withstand moisture for an extended period.

Additionally, they are more effective at standing up to the harsh environmental elements. Other types of wood may not maintain their strength. Or, they may start to decay over time when exposed to moisture.

wooden gutters

Disadvantages to Buying Wooden Gutters

Although wooden gutters look great and complement the exterior of a historic home, they are not without disadvantages.

Expensive Installation

Because of the complexity and nature of wood gutters, installation can be costly. The joinery is detailed work that requires beveled scarf joints to prevent leaking or decay. Additionally, wood gutters require the outside of the gutters to be painted, while the inside should be finished with a non-drying oil like shingle oil.

Since these gutters do not come standard in the US, there are only a few manufacturers that still make wood gutters, which can also contribute to their high cost.

For more on gutter pricing, check out “How Much New Gutters Cost”

Regular Maintenance and Upkeep

In addition to being expensive, wood gutters also require regular upkeep. All gutters require regular maintenance, however, wood gutters are particularly high maintenance.

Wood gutters are prone to splitting and cracking, so it’s important to take the proper precautions to maintain your gutters. You can do this by painting your wood gutter every few years. This will help your gutters fight off the harsh elements.

Additionally, you’ll also want to keep the inside of the wood gutters well-oiled with shingle oil or mineral oil. Finally, be sure to clean out your gutters at least once a year. If debris clogs your gutters, it will trap water, which in turn causes damage. The cleaner your gutters, the longer they will last.


If you are looking for long-lasting gutters for your home, you may want to steer clear of wood gutters. Aluminum, galvanized steel, or vinyl gutters require much less maintenance and are longer-lasting. Plus, they are cheaper than wood gutters.

However, if you’re willing to take on a labor of love to complement your historic home’s aesthetic, you won’t find a more beautiful gutter on the market.

Where to Buy Gutters Made of Wood

Since there are only a few manufacturers within the US that specialize in wood gutters, they can be difficult to find. Whoever you choose as your gutter manufacturer, we encourage you to find a team that specializes in wood gutters, since the installation requires a unique process. We encourage you to ask these questions before hiring a gutter contractor.

Opting for a More Durable Gutter Solution

If you are tired of the upkeep of wood gutters on your home, we recommend switching to an aluminum, steel or vinyl gutter system. These gutters can also be installed in combination with LeafFilter Gutter Protection, to maximize the effectiveness and defend your home from clogs.

During the installation of LeafFilter Gutter Protection, we can install new gutters if needed. Our team of professionals will ensure that your home is completely protected for years to come. Learn more about our product and how it works.