Gutter guards. Should you get them? We don’t think so. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of this popular product and see why homeowners are attracted to it and why it’s not the miracle they are hoping for.
Gutters need to be kept clean so that water can be properly directed away from your home, where it could otherwise do serious damage. Cleaning should be done at least twice a year, in the spring and fall, and possibly more often if you live in a heavily wooded area.
It’s this cleaning schedule homeowners seek to avoid with the purchase of gutter guards. Gutter cleaning costs can range from $50 up to $325, depending upon the height of your home, the length and number of your gutters and the area of the country in which you live. According to homeadvisor.com, most homeowners spent between $101 and $190 per cleaning.
According to Angie’s List, gutter guards cost an average of $6 to $7.50 per foot, and the average home has 200 feet of gutters, so that puts your installation cost at $1,200 to $1,500. That’s the same as about six years’ worth of cleaning, and gutter guards aren’t maintenance free.
If you get gutter guards, you can’t just have them installed and fuhgeddaboudit. Experts still recommend you have them cleaned at least once every two years. That’s better than twice a year, but is it significantly better? And let’s take a look at what can go wrong after you have gutter guards installed.
“Our problem is with debris catching on top on the guard or cover. It builds up and allows plants to grow on top. We have tried three different types of guards and the problem has been the same with all three.”
“We have them on our patio roof and the water/rain scoots across the surface of those (regardless of all the holes) and runs down the front side and drips from the bottom of the gutter.”
“You get ice dams, and the ice is actually helped along by fastening itself to the gutter guard and acting as a facilitator for the ice to hang on and become a larger piece than if it wasn’t there!”
These comments posted online by consumers demonstrate how this quick fix isn’t always what it’s promised to be.
It would be nice if we had paint that didn’t peel, grass that never grew taller than two inches and gutters that never needed cleaning, but really, it’s not realistic. Getting your gutters cleaned is a necessary chore, but this timely task is also a good opportunity for trained professionals to spot any problems with your roof, soffits or fascia so they can be repaired before they get worse.
If you have any questions about or problems with your gutters, call us here at Renovation by Burbach. We can install, repair or inspect your gutters so that your house is protected from rain, snow, ice and more this winter. And if you’re thinking about having gutter guards installed, we can walk you through your options and help you decide if such a project would benefit you and your home.