Why Gutter Guards Are a Good Investment
Cleaning out your gutters can be among the most frustrating parts associated with autumn and winter preparation. However, you have to do it – otherwise you may end with serious problems including extensive roof damage. Clogged up gutters can be very disgusting and dirty, and may cause problems with ice and snow build up as the weather gets cold. If your gutter fills up then rain begins to spill out over it, you’ll probably end up with a nasty damp problem.
Fortunately, there’s a simple way to protect yourself from this sort of problem – using gutter guards. There is a wide variety of Racine gutter guards available on the market, but the most well known and popular one is Gutterglove, due to the fact it can be fitted to a wide variety of different gutter sizes.
Gutter guards set you free from the annoying task of cleaning your gutter. They fit right over the top of the gutter, acting like a drain cover and filtering out debris, making sure that only rainwater enters the guttering system. These guards are very unobtrusive – since they’re barely visible from the ground, they don’t impair your property’s appearance in any way. All they do is fit on top of the gutter, requiring no modification of any sort.
Best Gutter Guard & Gutter Protection
You might have already heard about waterfall gutter guards, metal gutter guards, and rainfall gutter guards. The stainless steel mesh is capable of filtering out debris such as leaves, pine needles, grit running off your roof, seed pods, and others. The best guards will be made of a very lightweight material such as anodized aluminum – strong enough to capture debris, but light enough not to put unnecessary stress on your gutter system.
Some cheap guards have a very simple and thin support frame. This has the downside of being more at risk of collapsing. Even if it does hold up it may droop into the gutter and collect debris itself. Naturally, a gutter guard that collects debris is useless, not much better from the gutter collecting it itself. You need to make sure you get something that can hold its pitch properly, that won’t droop, and that will perfectly feet your roof, holding its shape and make sure debris shed away.
Ideally, you want a gutter guard that’s about .03 to .1 thick, depending on the quantity of debris you think you’ll encounter. Thicker frames are usually better, but they’re more important if you live in an area where your gutter accumulates a large quantities of needles, leaves and other debris throughout the year. Thicker guards should last a lot longer, so they may end up being a better investment on the long term.
The guards will support a mesh, which helps making sure smaller debris flow away. Make sure you get quality stainless steel mesh – that won’t rust over time even if exposed to harsh condition. Thinner meshes that are made of more fragile materials tend to corrode, then begin to pit and decay over time.
Are They Worth the Cost?
The experts at HGTV believe that gutter guards are most definitely worth the cost. With gutter guards, you will not need to climb up onto your roof to clean your gutters regularly throughout the year – this saves you time, and reduces the risk of you suffering injury. It also means that you don’t have to worry about the financial cost of repairing your roof if things go wrong. But you should know that gutter guards are not completely maintenance free – you will need to clean them occasionally. The good news is that if you choose the right type, thickness and pitch then you will find that you can go a long time between cleanings, so the maintenance burden will be minimal.
If you are going to buy them, make sure that you get them professionally fitted. This will ensure that you don’t end up with seeds and debris caught in your gutter, requiring more cleaning. A good professional fitting service will install your guards at the same pitch as your roof, ensuring maximum run-off, keeping your gutters clear and free.
If you opt for an ice-preventing gutter guard, choose one with just one cable – that is all you need to melt ice, and it will minimize the amount of power consumed throughout the year. Gutter guards can look expensive, but the total cost of ownership is minimal compared to the effort that they will save you long term.
Stop Ice Dams As Well!
In addition to stopping a build-up of leaves and debris, a top leaf filter can also stop ice from forming in your gutter. There are high-end gutter guards that are equipped with a single, low energy usage heat cable that will stop ice from forming in the first place – or melt ice that is already there, stopping it from expanding and damaging your gutter.
Look for a gutter guard that has a strong support frame that can be installed in the kind of gutter you have (not all gutter guards will fit a copper gutter well). An anodized aluminium channel frame will last for a long time and resist corrosion.
Choosing the Right Ice Dam Solution
While general purpose guards will do a decent job, the more specialist Leaf Blaster or Ice Breaker guards have a clear audience of homeowners, and it could be worth choosing one of those specialist models if you live in an area where ice is a problem or there are a lot of falling leaves at certain times of the year.
The LeafBlaster range in particular is interesting because of the unique design which slips under the roof shingles. The guard rests on the top of the roof deck or your tar paper, and clamps the gutter guard in place, keeping it stable. The guard is designed to match the pitch of the roof, ensuring that leaves flow over the top of it, not collecting and causing problems with your gutter.
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