Do gutter guards work? Before we answer that, let's talk about your gutters. Gutters redirect rainwater away from your house to protect it from soil erosion, which can damage your basement and destabilize the foundation of your home. So, gutters are a pretty big deal for your home.
To keep your gutters in good condition, you should clean them every season to prevent them from clogging. In places like Grey Bruce, Clearview, and Simcoe it's especially important to clean your gutters at least twice a year because of the climate and amount of forestry that surrounds homes (Not every home needs to be done twice a year) As cleaners in these area’s we’re are all too familiar with what happens when you don't clean your gutters regularly. Before you know it, fallen leaves pile up and create a massive blockage, leading to issues like mold and leakage that cause roof damage.
Gutter guards—or its other name gutter screens, helmets, or covers supposedly prevent debris from entering your rain gutters. In turn, the guards will then reduce your amount of gutter cleaning and will save you money in the long-term. Or so gutter guard sellers claim.
Why Gutter Guards Are Bad
As much as we would love for there to be an easy solution that completely protects you against drain blockages and eliminates your gutter upkeep, these guards don't work in the way you want. It's surprising and disappointing, but contrary to popular belief, gutter guards are a money pit, and here are five reasons why.
Gutter guards still require maintenance.
Despite claims that the shields are self-sufficient and reduce the number of times you need to clean your gutters, these leaf guards still demand routine cleaning. Not only do you have to tend to your guards, but they are also complicated to remove and clean. The rating of difficulty differs depending on what type of screens you have installed. You might even have to hire a cleaning company to help remove your screens and clean your gutters. Regardless, it's a time-consuming process that defeats the purpose of you purchasing them in the first place.
They don't do what's advertised (well).
Advertisers claim gutter guards keep your gutters debris-free. While it may prevent leaves and larger debris from infiltrating your gutter, smaller items like twigs and pine needles can still slip through the barrier. Over time, these sticks can accumulate, and soon enough, you'll find yourself with a dam that's blocking water from flowing through the canal. Overall, gutter guards might buy you time, but it doesn't stop blockages from happening entirely.
It's also more challenging to spot blockages because the guards sit on top of your gutter, obstructing your view. Discovering you have gutter congestion requires pulling out the old ladder and climbing up those rickety rungs, increasing the likelihood of personal injury.
Your problem may not be debris but moss and algae. If even a small amount of leaves penetrate your guards and begin to decompose in your gutters, you could face moss and algae growth. Left unchecked, this growth could quickly spread across your gutters and inevitably to your roof. Moss is definitively bad for your roof because when it grows, it can cause immense damage that could lead to having to replace your roof entirely.
Unbeknownst to many, gutter guards aren't made for the winter.
When you have gutter guards in place during the winter season, you'll come across a couple of issues. You know that when debris builds up in your gutters it will block water flow. But, in freezing temperatures, this water will turn to ice and add significant weight to your fascia. As well, the overflow of water can turn into icicles, adding more pressure to an already strained fascia. Rather than installing guards that lead to long-term damage to your roof, it's best to get a gutter cleaning service done in the fall right before winter.
All in all, they are costly.
After reviewing all the ways that gutter guards fail to work, we conclude that the guards are a bad investment. When you calculate the amount of time, effort, and money it takes to install and care for gutter guards, you'll see that it offers zero cost-savings and is not worth the expense. You'll spend more on its maintenance than on what you would pay for gutter cleaner. Since these shields require periodic cleaning that is sometimes a cumbersome procedure, in the end, the cost and work involved aren't worth it!
So do gutter guards work? Not really.
Bayside’s 2 Cents