Gutter guards are designed to keep leaves and debris from collecting in your gutters. Depending on the material, they can cost anywhere between $100 to $2,000 to cover an entire house. But because it can be quite pricey, many homeowners are hesitant to make an investment in gutter guards.
These covers do more than just prevent your gutters from clogging, however. They also serve several other purposes that would pay you back several times more than your initial investment over the years. Below are five reasons you should install gutter guards today.
1. Prevent Pest Infestations
One of the key functions of gutter guards is to stop insects and rodents from breeding in your gutters. The covers keep your gutters from becoming clogged by leaves and twigs, which also prevents stagnant water from collecting. This makes gutter guards an excellent mosquito control solution.
Gutter covers also act as a physical barrier against birds, possums, and rats, keeping these vermin from nesting on your roof.
2. Avoid Gutter Freezing and Ice Dams
During winter, the heat from inside the house melts the snow on your roof’s surface. The water then reforms into ice because of the freezing outdoor temperatures, creating a huge block of ice that clogs your gutters.
When left unattended, ice dams can cost you hundreds of dollars’ worth of damage. They can cause water to back up and pour into your house, damage shingles, and even tear off gutters when they become too heavy.
Gutter covers help prevent these troublesome dams from forming. They keep your gutters clear so that when the snow on your roof melts, the water will just flow out through the downspouts instead of refreezing by your roof.
There are also heated gutter guard options, which are ideal for locations that experience freezing winters.
3. Protect Home From Wildfires
Dried leaves and twigs that accumulate in your gutters and downspouts are highly flammable. They’ll ignite in seconds if flying embers touch them and start a house fire.
Having gutter guards help reduce your property’s vulnerability to fires. In fact, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recommends that homeowners in wildfire zones install leaf guards to improve their houses’ fire resistance.
FEMA specifies gutter covers in non-combustible materials like copper, galvanized steel, or aluminum. In case of a fire, these materials can prevent the fire from spreading onto the roof and into the attic
4. Prevent Rust and Corrosion
Damp leaves and twigs sitting in your gutters increase the likelihood of corrosion. Even gutters made from stainless steel can rust when water pools in them.
Gutter covers are designed to keep debris from accumulating in your gutters. This prevents water from pooling in the gutters, which helps you avoid rust and corrosion.
5. Prolong Gutters’ Lifetime
Gutter guards protect your gutters from all kinds of problems, including rust and pest infestation. They prolong the lifetime of your gutters and save you from needing a costly replacement. A gutter replacement costs around $3,000 for an average-sized U.S. home. It’s significantly more expensive than a gutter guard installation, which is priced at $2,000 at most.
Your roof also benefits from your gutter guards. Water trapped in gutters can rot the wooden fascia boards on your roof, causing leakage problems and letting moisture into your home. Gutter guards keep water flowing freely in your gutters, preventing it from damaging your roof.
How to Install Gutter Guards
Gutter covers need to be installed properly, or they won’t function as intended. Keep these things in mind when installing gutter guards:
Gutter guards should never be attached under the first row of shingles. Doing so can break the roof’s water barrier and cause costly water damage. So, don’t buy a gutter guard system that requires you to lift your roof’s shingles.
Don’t nail the gutter cover onto the roof because this pokes holes in your roof that let in water. Look for a gutter protection product that uses special fasteners instead of nails.
Gutter covers don’t come in a one-size-fits-all package. Measure your gutters accurately to make sure you get the right size cover. If you buy one that’s too small or too big, it might not fit your gutter properly, creating gaps where water can enter.
Ultimately, gutter covers save you more money in the long run. They make it easier for you to maintain your roof and gutter system and help you avoid expensive repairs and replacements. We recommend having your gutter guards professionally installed to guarantee their performance and durability.