Can I install Gutter Guards myself?

Gutter Guards: Overview of guard types and brands

  • 01 of 06

    Overview of Gutter Guard Systems

    Cleaning the leaves from gutters is an annual mess for any deciduous homeowner. If you're lucky enough to have evergreen trees, cleaning the needles from the gutters is an ongoing process - all year round. And even if you're not in a high leaf / needle zone, your gutters will still slowly become dirty with particles from composite shingles, twigs, and dirt.

    Many homeowners don't like standing up on a ladder to clean rain gutters, or they hate the idea of ​​paying for a service to do this relatively simple task. This is why inventors have always tried to develop gutter systems that let water in but leave leaves outside.

    What's out there Basically, you have a choice of three types of gutter protection systems: those that filter and filter; those who block and fill; and those that separate water from rubble by surface tension. Details:

    1. Sieve / filter devices : Metal or vinyl screens that fit over existing gutters. Or gutter systems with screens integrated into the product.
    2. Blocking / Filling Devices : Put strips of very porous foam or brushes into the channels.
    3. Reversing curve grooves : Water adheres to the hood and flows into the gutter; Leaves and other debris do not cling and shoot away.
  • 02 of 06

    Screening: DIY mesh screens

    How does it work?

    Aluminum or PVC screens that fit on existing gutters. Water passes through large holes in the strainer, but leaves and debris filter away or stay on top.

    DIY friendly?

    Yes.

    Brands)

    There are a lot of brands out there. One is Amerimax Home Products, which makes gutter filter screens that are available at most hardware stores.

    Pros

    Easily available. Inexpensive.

    disadvantage

    Leaves stay at the top of the screen.

    Large holes in the fabric allow small particles to get into the gutter. These particles either end up in the downpipes or have to be removed by hand.

  • 03 of 06

    Screening: micro-mesh gutter screens

    How does it work?

    DIY gutter screens let small particles into the gutter. After a while they create a sludge that has to be removed manually. But micro-mesh screens have holes only 50 microns in diameter to keep even tiny drained composite shingles from getting into the gutters.

    DIY friendly?

    Usually they need to be purchased from a dealer and installed by their own installers.

    Brands)

    Leaf filter

    Pros

    Almost nothing can get into your gutters. A plus when you collect rainwater in barrels.

    disadvantage

    Few DIY options. Large amounts of water can run over the screens and not get into the gutters.

  • 04 of 06

    Blocking: foam gutter inserts

    How does it work?

    The basic idea is to block the gutter before it gets blocked by leaves and other unwanted trash. The material you use to block the rain gutter is a highly porous foam that comes in 4 foot long strips. Rainwater peels off the roof and quickly through the foam inserts. Debris remains on top of the inserts.

    DIY friendly?

    Yes very.

    Brands)

    GutterStuff sells something at around $ 8.00 per linear foot for 4 "half round gutters. GutterFill and Leaf Defier also have similar products.

    Pros

    Low cost and easy DIY ability.

    disadvantage

    You still need to clean your gutters. The only difference is that debris sits on a higher level instead of being buried in the gutter.

    Some homeowners report that foam gutter inserts encourage moss growth.

  • 05 of 06

    Blocking: Gutter Brush

    How does it work?

    Similar to the foam inserts, the Gutterbrushes fill the cavity of the gutter. Water easily penetrates through the bristles. The intent is for some debris to remain in the bristles and decompose. Larger debris is blown away or can be removed by hand.

    DIY friendly?

    Yes very.

    Brands)

    Gutter brush

    Pros

    Simple and cheap.

    disadvantage

    Not all residues can be removed from the brushes.

  • 06 of 06

    Reverse curve surface tension trough systems

    How does it work?

    Surface tension channels are a cool concept. The idea is that water "sticks" to a curved ridge, following that ridge even when it bends upside down. At this point, the water will drain from the ridge and flow into the gutter.

    Instead of following the curve, debris flows straight onto the ground.

    Dynamic Metal Rendering notes that these "reverse curve" cutters are nothing new: they were first patented in 1908 by George Cassens.

    DIY friendly?

    No. In general, these gutters are not available for purchase at retail stores and must be installed by an authorized installer. However, Amerimax does offer a similar, DIY-friendly, retrofit device that they call the Solid Gutter Cover.

    Brands)

    LeafGuard

    Pros

    Seamless and sealed.

    The domed hood blends in with the roofline.

    disadvantage

    Sealed? What if you need to get in the rain gutters?

    You cannot usually install these gutters yourself.

    It is debatable whether reverse curvature gutters work at all. For some homeowners, the water does not flow into the trough in large quantities. Debris doesn't always flake either; Sometimes it clogs the opening.