What Are Gutter Screens and Why Are They So Important?
There are many different ways you can protect your home with just a minimal investment and a little bit of your time. Some of these include chimney inspections, regular roof maintenance, and more. Clean, functional gutters are vital, too; they play a much larger role in protecting homes than most consumers believe. To make the process of cleaning your gutters easier and more efficient, you may want to consider investing in some gutter screens.
What are Gutter Screens?
Gutter screens are pieces of material that are designed to sit inside your gutters or just on top of them. They come in numerous different styles, and while some are exactly what the name suggests – simple screens – others are a bit more complex. Some are quite affordable, and others can be quite costly. It’s also important to consider your location and environment since some gutter screens provide different benefits and types of protections than others, too.
Why You Need Gutter Screens
The primary purpose of a gutter screen is keeping debris out of your gutters so that rainwater can flow freely through the entire system and eventually away from your home. If you live directly under trees, then a gutter screen that prevents leaves from entering your system is a wise investment. There are also screens that can keep most of the pine needles that may fall on your roof out of your gutters, too. Gutter screens can also discourage animals from building their nests in your system, and many were even designed to protect against pest infestations.
Types of Gutter Screens
- Screens – Gutter screens are exactly what their names imply – screens that fit over gutter openings to serve as filters for twigs, debris, leaves, and more. There are several different screen types, including those that simply rest inside the gutters, hinged screens, and lock-on screens. These come in all shapes and sizes to fit numerous gutters and hanger systems, as well.
- Hoods – Gutter hoods, on the other hand, attach to the eaves of the roof to fit over your gutters and prevent debris like leaves and twigs from entering the system. These come in various materials and colors to match your roof or gutter system. Thanks to the design and the rounded edge, rainwater effectively “sticks” to the hood and channels into the gutter. Leaves and twigs are simply left to rest atop the hood or fall to the ground.
- Hybrids – Hybrids are crosses between screens and hoods that are designed to provide the best of both. Most are uniquely designed to repel larger debris like leaves and twigs in the same fashion as a hood but filter out smaller debris through the screen. This is ideal for situations in which homeowners must account for both leaves and pine needles; thanks to the screen that fits the entire length of the gutter, pine needles are far less likely to find their way into the system.
- Foam Inserts – Finally, foam inserts are also exactly what their name would imply – pieces of porous foam that fit down inside the gutter snugly to completely prevent debris from entering. Because the space is occupied with foam, it cannot clog, which can help you avoid serious damage. Many foam inserts also come with an insecticide to prevent pest infestations, are UV protected to prevent degradation from the sun, and are fire retardant.
Gutter screens are fantastic accessories that every homeowner should consider. The ones listed above are the most common, and each one performs at its best in very specific situations. Think about the amount of rainfall you get as well as the type of debris that is common around your home, and then look for gutter screens that will keep most of the debris out without hindering the flow of water.