Gutter Guard system selection
Typically there are two approaches to maintaining the gutters to prevent clogging and water damage caused by them over flowing. With customers it seems to be a balance between wanting to having them cleaned vs. a one time higher price that prevents the need for periodic cleaning. The other unstated issue is concern if the gutter cover system will really work. There are many choices in the market place with trade offs based on price and how the water gets into the gutter system. The number of choices can be anything from screens that let small organic debris into the gutters to all new gutters with metal covers that depend on the surface tension of the water to curl around into the gutter. The balance in the decision often comes down to how long a person will be living in the house compared to the purchase price. As the cost of installation goes up the payback period increases but the quality of the solution increases.
What the guards do
In selecting from the options to keep gutters clear and free flowing these systems all try to separate the leaves and needles from the rain water. Then the next issue is to not restrict the water flow too much in doing this. The least expensive option various screen type covers do a good job of letting in the water but the small organic material that fits through the screen can create a fine peat humus type of material in the gutter trough that does not get flushed out. In one case a tree had grown in this material and had to be cut out of the screen to remove it. The key to this kind of system is to still have it checked periodically and possibly flushed out when needed. This raises the cost some over time but with out checking some winter ice dames can occurred at the gutter or water overflowing can damage the sofit, landscaping or cause water in the basement.
One of the systems installed a lot by roofing contractors when they put on a new roof is the Water fall gutter cover. This is a white plastic that covers the opening from the shingles to the front lip of the gutter and has a slot in it to allow water in. It locks into the front of the gutter very tightly and the other side away from the gutter is up under the shingles making for a very secure installation. This type of system has three draw backs. If service is needed make sure you do it when it is warm out. At temperatures around 40 degrees and below it can be very hard to remove since the plastic is less flexible. The other issue is the shingles glue tabs tend to stick to it and when you try to pull up the shingle slightly in the cold they can tend to crack or split. The disadvantage to this system is small organic material especially from spruce trees tends to collect in the small opening and block the water so it just cascades off the gutter.
The gutters being able to accept high amounts of water in heavy rain is the key to preventing damage to the house, basement and landscaping.
Gutter fill systems
The system I sell is this type of system and is warranted for 25 years when installed by an approved installer. This is an insert type of gutter system. The price installed for this system is in between the cost of the screens and the cost of the nationally advertised gutter covers. The price per foot will vary but for a budget price you can figure around $11.00 per foot installed and warranted. To get a real good idea of price please contact me at HomesServices.cc, LLC
Gutter Cover systems
These systems often are the most expensive since they require installation of all new gutters and removing and replacing some of the shingles. The cost of these systems can be in the range of $19.00 to $23.00 per linear foot of gutter. With this system the entire gutter area is very tightly sealed. The only real maintenance on this system that I know of is to wipe down the leading edge is organic material accumulates on it since it cam break the surface tension preventing water from curling around and into the gutter.
For more information and pictures and prices for the Leaf Defier in Connecticut please contact me
I will install other systems that are not the leaf defier, but do not provide any type of warranties on these other systems