Cleaning your gutters is a hassle. Scrap that, cleaning your gutter is a major hassle.
If they were easy to access it would be a hard enough job already. But the fact that you have to climb up a ladder to access them makes it an even more painstaking job. Also, it is amazing how easy it is to get gunk in your eye when you are rummaging through the leaves in the gutter.
Then there is the risk of getting attacked by angry insects and vermin that are agro that you are destroying their home, and it becomes less of a home maintenance task and more of a self-preservation/survival mission.
But there is an easy solution; call a gutter cleaner to come and do the job for you.
Or you can get in the DIY mindset and install some gutter guards (also know as leaf screeners).
But before you run down to your local hardware store and drop some hard-earned money on some gutter guards, there is some vital information that you should be aware of.
I might have some bad news for you about gutter cleaning…..
Even if you have gutter guards you still need to clean your gutters. Hopefully, that little tidbit of information is not going to surprise and depress you too much, but it is a fact. Gutter guards are great at keeping large leaves, sticks, twigs and animals out of your gutters, but they will not stop dirt, dust and muck from resting in your gutters.
One of the biggest mistakes that professional gutter cleaners see is rusted out gutters from homeowners who never clean their gutters once they install gutter guards. All of that gunk sits in the joints, kinks, bends and corners of the gutters and oxidises through the gutters.
In fact, installing gutter guards and then not cleaning your gutters is going to dramatically shorten the lifespan of your gutters compared to if you don’t install gutter guards but clean your gutters periodically.
What Are The Benefits Of Gutter Guards?
1 – Gutter guards keep leaves and large debris out of the gutters so that water can effectively flow through the gutters and down the down pipe. During heavy rain, if leaves are blocking the gutters the water is forced to overflow and can leak through the roof cavity and throughout the internal cavities of your home. You can interpret that as very expensive water damage.
2 – Bushfire preparation. Dried out leaves and twigs located in your gutters is the perfect fuel for embers that can sometimes blow kilometres during a bushfire. The Rural Fire Service recommends homeowners should clean out their gutters before bushfire season. Gutter guards help to reduce the amount of combustible material that is in your gutters.
3 – Leaves that are sitting in damp gutters can shorten the lifespan of your gutters. By keeping your gutters clean, gutter guards are a wise investment that can help you get years of decades more life out of your gutters.
Warning: If you do not have safe roof access equipment or do not feel confident working at heights do not attempt this job. There is a plethora of gutter guard installers that provide affordable services. It is never worth risking your health and safety to attempt a DIY job on your property.
How To Install Gutter Guards On A Tile Roof
If you have been researching gutter guard installation online then you would be well aware of the abundance of products that are on the market. Some of the most popular styles are mesh gutter guards, reverse curve gutter guards, bottle brush gutter guards, nylon gutter guards and foam gutter guards.
1 – Measure out a length of mesh that is about 30cm longer than the gutter that you will be installing it on. Extend the gutter guard over that length of gutter so that it hangs over the edge on the longest sides. Anchor the gutter guard roll at one end so that it stays in place.
2 – Line up the gutter guard so that it follows the outside edge of the gutters. Attach the guards using the included trimmets to the front edge of the gutters. Starting from the middle of the gutter using 25cm spaces and working outwards tends to ensure that it lines up straight on all of the spaces. Don’t drill the trimmets flush with the roof until all the trimmets are in place.
3 – Tuck the read edge of the gutter guard under the tiles. Depending on the rise and shape of your roof you may need to cut some small lines. This will allow the guards to fit snuggly over the hips and bends. The goal is to ensure that leaves can not enter the guttering system, so make sure that there are no gaps in the guards where leaves can enter.
How To Install Gutter Guards On A Metal Roof
Follow step 1 and 2 of the above “How To Install Gutter Guards On A Tile Roof”.
3 – Make some small cuts on the rear of the gutter guard about an inch into the guards. On every ridge install one of the included saddles (for a corrugated roof install a saddle on every second ridge). Some manufacturers will also refer to saddles as clips.
4 – Using your fingers mould the gutter guard flush against the metal.
5- Screw down the saddle so that the gutter guard is fixed firmly in place.
BestLocal.Sydney Tip: Youtube has a wealth of guides that show how to install gutter guards from a wide range of brands. There are also some great Youtube channels by roofers that highlight how to cope with deep valleys and complex roof installations.
Make sure that you do your research before you purchase any gutter guards as there are some pretty bad products out there. Remember, you get what you pay for.
Sydney often gets brutalised with heavy storms and weather, so it is more important than other places to have really durable gutter guards. The wide range of birds that frequent the suburbs of Sydney also requires gutter guards to have a higher strength rating than gutter guards from overseas.
BestLocal.Sydney Tip: The very best way of figuring out what type of gutter guard is best for your suburb, ask a gutter cleaner. They spend their days with their noses in the gutters, so they know which brands of gutter guards are effective, and which are absolute rubbish.
If you ask around the gutter cleaners at Sydney Gutter Cleaning they have some horror stories of some gutter guards that have been installed by DIY amateurs that have not even lasted a season.
Ask around any you might just save yourself a lot of time, hassle and money!