Sectional Vs. Seamless Gutters
Gutters come in two main categories: seamless (also known as continuous) and sectional (also known as traditional). Seamless gutters are crafted from one long piece of aluminum or copper, connected to your external drainage system at only the corners and downspout outlets. It is only in these places that any seams exist. Normally, they are attached to your home by hidden hangers, rather than by the traditional method of long spikes and ferrules. It is recommended that seamless gutters are installed by professionals who have the equipment and materials to custom make the product perfect for your home, but it is possible for you to do it on your own with the right tools and materials.
Sectional gutters are simply lengths of gutter that snap together with connectors. They are easy to install by both professionals and do-it-yourselfers, but require more maintenance. Even with proper sealing at connecting points, eventually in the long run seams tend to leak from dents or warping.
For both seamless and sectional gutters, additional pieces are required to complete the perfect drainage system for your home. Depending on the style of drainage system and how advanced it is, these pieces include leader heads, end caps, mitres (also known as corner pieces), elbows, pipe straps, spikes and ferrules, and drop outlets for connecting to downspouts.