It’s autumn, which can only mean one thing. We’re in the season of gutters clogged with leaves! 🍂
Cleaning the gutters is no homeowner’s favorite chore. But what if we told you that you could reduce the time you spent cleaning your gutters while still protecting your house?
Enter: Gutter guards.
Today, we’ll be breaking down for you exactly why gutter guards are a smart investment for your home and how to install them yourself! Keep reading to find out:
- How gutter guards work
- What tools you need to install them
- How much they cost
- What steps you need to follow to install gutter guards by yourself
What Are Gutter Guards?
Throughout the year, your gutters can become stuffed with things like leaves, pine needles, and other debris. This buildup can easily clog gutters, preventing water flow. Once blocked, water will spill out over the gutters, which can lead to water damage to your home.
Gutter guards are a powerful tool to protect against future damage. Also known as leaf guards, they lay on top of your gutters and allow water to pass through while trapping debris on the outside. This helps your gutter system function optimally.
Gutter Guards Pros and Cons
While gutter guards are an effective way to keep your gutters clean, there are lots of factors to consider when it comes to choosing whether or not to purchase them.
✅ Gutter Guard Pros
- Can Help Your Gutters Last Longer – Because gutter guards prevent debris from sitting in your gutter, they can help prevent corrosion and rust buildup. This will help your gutters last for many years before needing to be replaced
- Less Cleaning Time – If cleaning gutters is one of your least favorite chores, gutter guards can significantly reduce the time you spend cleaning them.
- Prevents Infestations – The damp environment of your gutters makes it a prime place for insects like bees and wasps to build a hive. Installing gutter guards will ensure that your gutters remain pest free!
🚫 Gutter Guard Cons
- Can Be Pricey – While a DIY gutter guard installation is perfectly doable and significantly cuts costs, certain types of gutter guards cost more than others. If you are on a tight budget, gutter guards might not be worth it to you.
- Need Special Cleaning – While it’s true that your leaf guards will cut down on overall gutter maintenance, the guards themselves require occasional cleaning. The guards can get small debris stuck in the mesh, which blocks water flow. Some people would rather clean their entire gutters, rather than do a special cleaning just for the guards.
What Types of Gutter Guards Are Available?
There are several types of gutter guards available on the market. Depending on your needs, you might find that one type works better for your home than another.
Micro Mesh Guards
Micro Mesh guards are the most versatile type of guard available on the market. These guards come in a variety of different materials, including plastic, aluminum, and steel. Because the materials vary widely, you can get micro mesh gutter guards at many different price points.
That being said, they will generally be more expensive than other types of guards. You are paying for a quality gutter protector, as the fine mesh is very effective at keeping debris out of your gutter. Cheaper versions will only last a few years, with more expensive versions lasting up to 10-12 years.
If you are looking to DIY your gutter guards, micro-mesh guards may not be the choice for you, as they typically require professional installation.
Foam Gutter Guards
Foam gutter guards are an excellent choice for a DIY-er. Made of polyurethane, they are easily installed and can be cut to fit your gutters. Best of all, they are relatively inexpensive, costing between $300-$700 to install.
The downside? They have to be replaced frequently. Most buyers find that their foam guards wear down after a year or two.
Brush Gutter Guards
Out of all the gutter guard options, brush guards are by far the easiest to install. The only thing you have to do? Place the guard securely in the bottom of your gutter. Voila! Your gutter will be protected from debris overflow all year long!
That being said, brush guards may require more regular maintenance to keep them working properly. They are prone to clogging with larger debris pieces.
Metal Gutter Guards
Metal gutter guards offer the best of both worlds. They are durable, easy to install, and can last up to twenty years! The only downside? They tend to have larger holes than their micro-mesh counterparts. This means that small debris can still slip through and need to be cleaned to promote optimal water flow.
If you are looking for a practical and affordable solution, screen guards fit the bill! They can easily be cut to size and are relatively cheap. They are simple to install and do not require any tools.
3 Steps to Installing Gutter Guards
You’ve chosen the guards that work best for you, and you are ready to install them! Follow these simple steps to keep your gutters clean and protected!
- Clean Gutters
The first step is to make sure that your gutters are clear of any debris. Having a blank slate will ensure the effectiveness of your guards.
- Measure Your Gutters
Take the time to accurately measure your gutters. This will allow you to make sure that you have enough material to properly install your gutter guards.
- Review The Instructions
Each type of gutter guard will have different installation methods. Be sure to carefully go over the manufacturer’s instructions.
It’s also a good idea to check out some videos of others installing their gutter guards to get a better sense of what you will need to do. Videos like the one below are a great resource to see how different materials are installed!
Contact Your Gutter Guard Specialist Today
Got questions or are interested in a type of gutter guard that needs to be professionally installed? Contact the Northface Construction team for a free quote on gutter guard installation! As experts in our field, we are more than happy to help you choose a gutter guard system that will work for your home and lifestyle.