What about ice?
I was told you can not have gutters in Maine because they cause ice backup.
This is far from true. A properly installed gutter system does not create ice. In fact ice dams on the roof are not related to the gutter system. Just look at these two photos; neither of these houses even have gutters, yet both have ice dams.
The fact is, ice dams start on the edge of the roof and are caused by heat loss through the roof. When you have a snow load on the roof, any heat loss will melt the bottom layer of snow. The melted snow travels down the roof. When it get colder, the water freezes as it falls off the roof. This creates a ridge of ice that prevents new water from going off the roof. The ridge keeps growing up the roof and over the front. Water going over the front forms icicles. These icicles are where the ice in the gutter comes from. Moving water will not freeze in the gutter but, when the water is already ice it cannot flow and will build up.
Properly installed gutters can actually help with some ice issues. Just look at the below photos.
Photos 1 & 2 These are photos of the same 130' long building, same side, same day. They had us install a gutter on half the building. Notice the part with ice is the area without a gutter. Now look at the red gutter on photo 2 without ice.
Because of this, the owner had us add a gutter to the other half.
Photo #3 Notice the same thing as 1 & 2. The area with a gutter has no ice and the area without a gutter has ice.
Again this customer had us complete the house.
Photo #4 Here we have ice on both areas with and without a gutter. Notice that the ice is the same on both sides.
The gutter did not make the ice issue any worse than it was without a gutter.
I was told not to have gutters because they will not last with Maine winters.
This is only true if you have a low quality gutter system or if the gutter system was not installed properly. The retail stores offer a low cost gutter system that feels better to the pocket. The problem with this is the quality of the material is so low that these gutters usually do not last the winter. The other big issue that effects the life of the gutter is how it is installed. Anybody can install a gutter but very few know how to install the system properly. This is the whole reason I have the photo at the top of this page. If you have the highest quality gutter system that was installed properly, you have a gutter system that will last.........Even in Maine!!!