One of the most important pieces of equipment designed to protect your home is the rain gutter.
In concept, the task is very simple. Rain Gutters help direct roof runoff away from the foundation of your house. Any water pooling at your home’s foundation can lead to soil erosion, rotted siding, create a breeding ground for mold and insects, and lead to water in your basement.
In order for gutters to work properly, you have to keep them clean. Debris such as leaves, pine needles, twigs, bird’s nests, hornet’s nests and a wide array of other materials can limit your gutter’s effectiveness.
The reality with cleaning gutters is it is inherently unsafe. Anyone who has spent time cleaning a rain gutter knows how dangerous it can be.
Rain Gutter Solutions To Consider
The concept of covering the gutter system to keep debris out has been around for a number of years. Unfortunately, many early designs don’t perform as well as some newer designs and their related technology. Below is a brief scouting report on a few rain gutter cover design types –
- Traditional Designs — “Reverse Curve” designs are accepted in the market but many believe they have inherent design features which actually contribute to debris being deposited into the gutters. In other words, the rate of debris being deposited is reduced; however clogging still occurs because the “curve” angles directly into the gutter.
- Contemporary Designs — Screen mesh designs were introduced about ten years ago and seem to be experiencing much greater success. Screen mesh designs perform better because they actually close any large opening to the gutter, virtually eliminating debris from gutters and ultimately protecting your safety.
Rain Gutter Protection Systems Must Be Built To Last
An important thing to remember when considering gutter covers is that all of the tests performed are with new equipment in controlled situations. So it’s no surprise that every rain gutter cover performs well in tests in terms of ﬂow rates and general performance. However, none of our customers have a home located inside a test facility. In the real world, the elements such as the sun (UV rays), cold, heat, leaves, twigs and other debris all work together to put strain on any system.
The Bottom Line For Gutter Covers – What To Consider When Looking
No matter what system is selected, consumers still need a product that will maintain its integrity. If it doesn’t hold up in real conditions, it will not work as it’s designed. Tough components equate to long life and superior good performance.
For example, with screen mesh systems, be sure to look for the following:
- A frame that will last. Without a frame built to last, your system’s performance will decline over time. Anodized aluminum frames for example are hardened for longer life.
- What is the mesh made of? Heavy duty surgical steel can withstand rust and the effects of lighter grade mesh will rust.
- The quality of the mesh — or its dot pattern. If the holes let through anything larger than dust or water, you will eventually have problems.
- Your system must be completely sealed. Without being fastened and sealed, natural contraction and expansion with seasonal changes will create gaps and cause your system to fail.
The process is simple. When your system performs as it was designed, it reduces the dangerous task of climbing and cleaning your gutters. Less ladder time translates into increased safety. When you select your gutter cover system, be sure of two things –
First -the system will keep debris out of your gutters
Second – the system has the structural integrity to last a long time
Sims Exteriors and Remodeling are exterior experts serving the greater Madison WI area, including Middleton, Waunakee, Fitchburg, Oregon, Verona, McFarland, Stoughton, Cottage Grove, Sun Prairie, DeForest and all of Dane County.
Rain gutters and their protection are a worthy investment. If you have questions, call or email Sims Exteriors and Remodeling – 608-825-4500 – for assistance in selecting rain gutter cover protection in Madison WI.