Thursday, April 18

Upgrade your gutters – Innovations that reduce cleaning and clogs

Upgrade your gutters

Outdated gutters allow leaves, twigs, and debris to build up into clogs that compromise your home’s water management. New systems and materials offer options to upgrade old gutters for leaf protection and easier maintenance. Investing in an innovative gutter system conserves time and waterproofs your home for the long run.

Gutter guards

Gutter guards, also called gutter covers, are mesh screens or perforated inserts that fit over existing gutters. They allow rainwater through while blocking leaves and debris from entering the gutter trough. Many snap-in designs retrofit easily onto old gutters. Premium stainless steel or copper guards resist corrosion for decades. DIY-friendly foam filters are inexpensive but less durable options. Guards drastically reduce gutter cleaning frequency by handling light debris loads. Just hose off surface debris a couple of times per year.

Leaf-repelling gutter coatings

Liquid-applied gutter coatings create a slick surface that makes gutters nearly self-cleaning. Debris washed by rainwater simply slides off the ultra-low surface tension coating instead of clinging to the gutter bed. DIY-friendly options like Raindrop Gutter Guard paint on easily. Commercial-grade ceramic nano-polymer gutter coatings offer superior slickness and durability when professionally applied. Reapply low-VOC coatings every few years. Coatings nicely augment guards by handling dust and pollen guards miss. The liquids penetrate and protect aging galvanized steel gutters too.

Rain chains

Also called rain chains or rain curtains, these decorative devices guide water from roof valleys and downspouts in a serpentine path. The cascading rain effect adds visual interest while separating debris before entering gutters. Made from metals like copper or aluminum, rain chains come in custom designs and finishes. Sturdy chain links allow rain to flow smoothly while inhibiting leaves and grit. Install them with catches and drip pans to handle the overflow. Besides beauty, rain chains prevent top-level clogging in gutters. Their cascading action filters out many contaminants. Several gutter guard systems take protection further than basic screens. Look for these enhanced features:

  • Rear mounting to preserve roof aesthetics
  • Micro-mesh stainless steel material that won’t rust or bend
  • Patented flow-through designs customized for your environment
  • Debris-blocking foam insert suspended above the guard
  • -Magnetic edging to catch nails and metal debris
  • Copper or zinc screens avoiding corrosion and stains

Premium solutions have superior strength and small openings to repel nearly all debris. Professional installation ensures proper fitting for maximum effectiveness. For homes with limited roof overhangs, extensions add clearance between the roof edge and gutter. This space allows more debris to dry and blow away before reaching gutters. Use fascia board or decorative frieze board extensions to push gutters out several inches to a foot. The further from the roof edge, the less debris makes it into gutters. Overhangs also give more gutter overflow capacity. Just take drainage effects on the site into consideration.

Replacing obsolete gutters entirely provides the best assurance against future maintenance issues. Durable new gutters keep water flowing freely for 20-30 years. Seamless aluminum, copper, and steel gutters offer strength and integral design, avoiding leaks. Never opt for cheap vinyl systems. Include commercial-grade downspout strainers and leaf guards. Investing in new gutters with advanced detailing prevents cascading exterior damage when old systems fail. Your preventative upgrade saves money long-term.