When you buy a home, you radiate the pride of fulfilling the American dream. But, with the feeling of owning your home also comes a list of responsibilities. At the top of this list is keeping your home in excellent condition. Proactive maintenance helps you save money by avoiding costly repairs. But it’s not always easy.
One of the most laborious and daunting home maintenance tasks is rain gutter cleaning. It’s not a chore every homeowner looks up to – think spring cleaning. However, the gutters and downspouts are critical to keeping the rainwater from damaging your house.
That said, rain gutters collect all sorts of debris throughout the year, making it necessary to keep them clean. Thankfully, there is one cost-effective and practical solution to this problem. Yes, we are talking about leaf guards, also known as gutter guards.
Let’s get into the nitty-gritty of this practical solution.
What Are Gutter Guards?
Gutter guards are caps or liners that prevent debris like wet leaves, sticks, twigs, pine needles, and tree nuts from entering your rain gutters and downspouts. They essentially act like filters preventing your rain gutters from clogging up.
If you don’t use gutter guards, you will need to clean your rain gutters more frequently. And if you fail to do so, the rainwater will not flow properly through the gutter system. This can lead to many issues, including rainwater damage to your roof and ceiling, followed by mold and mildew infestation.
Types of Leaf Guards
As you may already know, there are different types of gutter guards on the market. You would want to buy one that best suits your needs, the curb appeal of your home, and your budget. Out of these many options, here are the best five you can consider.
- Rib Design
These gutter guards are ribbed with holes in the surface to allow water through while blocking debris entry. The ribbed design takes advantage of the wind. As the leaf dries, the wind easily lifts the leaf off. Affordable a long lasting, these gutter leaf guards are installed on many Utah homes.
Foam gutter guards are another easy-to-install and relatively cost-effective option. They are like a triangular block of foam that sits in the gutter. You can cut these leaf guards to suitable lengths, making it easier to use them for oddly shaped gutter systems. Plus, you don’t need screws or nails to fit them. However, they are not usually as sturdy as other gutter guards. For this reason, Ace Gutter no longer carries foam leaf guards.
- Micro Mesh
These gutter guards are essentially a wire or a plastic grid with small holes. As the holes are smaller, they can block almost all types of debris from entering your gutters – even roof grit. Ace gutter carries the Leaf Blaster Pro, which are sturdy and low maintenance. Even professional gutter cleaning service providers consider these the best leaf guards out there.
- Reverse Curve
Often used to boot curb appeal, these specially designed gutter guards have no bristles or holes. Instead, they have a reverse curve that allows water to enter the gutters but debris to slide right down along them. They are sturdy and often come with a warranty. However, you will need a professional rain gutter installation company to fit them onto your roof, and they can be expensive.
Benefits of Leaf Guards
Whether you install screens or foam gutter guards, their benefits are far-reaching. Most homeowners want to install leaf guards to protect their homes from a plethora of problems. Let’s check out a few ways gutter guards can help.
- Significantly reduced blockages
While some small debis may still enter the gutter, Every homeowner knows that debris can block your gutters. When that happens, the rainwater cannot make its way into the downspouts and the drain pipe- often called a downspout. Worse still, the overflowing water can pool around your foundation, causing foundation and basement damage in the long run.
It can also enter your roof, damaging the ceiling, attic, and roof insulation if left unchecked. Gutter guards can help nip these problems right in the bud. With no debris entering your gutters, there is less chance of blockages and rainwater overflow.
- Cut Down Your Gutter Cleaning Frequency
Leaf guards prevent the debris from blocking your gutters and downspouts. If your rain gutters are not covered, you will need to clean them at least once every year. This will help prevent the consequent rainwater damage.
However, rain gutter cleaning is a risky chore. It involves climbing on the roof using a ladder. Most novice DIYers could risk falling off. You could also get electric shocks if there are overhanging power cables nearby.
And if you don’t know what you are doing, you could damage your roof, walls, and the very gutters you are cleaning. But you can save yourself from all this trouble if you install gutter guards. They can bring your rain gutter cleaning frequency down to once every three to five years.
- Prevent Overflow of Water during Heavy Rains
Rainwater will overflow from blocked gutters, especially during heavy rainfalls or storms. As mentioned in the first point, this can damage your foundation, roof, and walls. Moreover, excess rainwater can pool in your garden or backyard, creating water puddles.
These puddles often attract mosquitoes, wasps, and insects. Gutter guards can help you avoid these problems. They prevent your gutters and downspouts from accumulating debris and getting blocked. That, in turn, prevents overflow of water.
- Prevent Ice Dams and Gutter Freezing
If your gutters are blocked, water gets trapped and freezes in the winter. This could result in ice dams. When left unchecked, ice dams can cause irrecoverable damage to your home. It involves broken shingles and torn gutters.
The backed-up water from ice dams can enter your insulation, ceilings, walls, and other areas, causing damage like peeling paint, sagging ceilings, warped floors, stained walls, and even mold and mildew. The good news is gutter guards can prevent the debris from accumulating in your gutters. That, in turn, can alleviate the risk of ice dam formation to a great extent.
- Avoid Pest Infestation
We all know that rain gutters, when filled with debris, are a breeding ground for vermin and insects. You will have an infestation of squirrels, birds, mice, mosquitoes, ants, spiders, and even bats.
Gutter guards can keep your gutters clean. This risk of pest infestation goes down considerably if there is no stagnant water or decaying debris in your rain gutters. Think of leaf guards as a physical barrier that prevents pests and vermin from entering your gutters and downspouts.
- Reduce the Risk of Rust and Decay
While we at Ace Gutter use aluminum materials, some older gutters may be made of steel and can rust. Water-soaked debris can increase the risk of rust and decay. It can cause your gutters to deteriorate quickly. Gutter guards can reduce this risk significantly as they prevent water-soaked debris from building up inside your rain gutters.
- Reduce the Risk of Fire
Gutter guards also protect your home against bushfires. The dry debris trapped in your gutters is a grave fire hazard. Embers can travel a long way during bushfires. And if one of those gets into your rain gutters, it can ignite a fire and quickly consume your home. Installing gutters guards can significantly reduce this risk.
- Save Time and Money
Finally, gutter guards can help you save time and money. Whether you clean the gutters yourself or hire a professional gutter cleaning service, you will be spending considerable money and time.
However, after installing gutter guards, you will have to spend less money and time on this chore. You will only need to get the debris off your leaf guards. It is far easier than cleaning the gutters and downspouts inside out.
As a homeowner, you stand to gain a lot by installing leaf guards. These simple devices can prevent your gutters and downspouts from excessive wear and tear. Gutter guards come in various shapes and sizes. All you have to do is choose and install the one that best fits your needs, and you can save your home from a world of trouble. That’s where experts like Ace Gutter can help.
If you need help choosing and installing gutter guards, call us on (801) 676-1048 or fill out our secure online contact form to schedule an appointment today!