Tired of cleaning your gutters every few months or dealing with the destructive results of a clogged gutter system after each major rain-pour or snowfall? Anyone who has spent years climbing up and down a ladder to clean their gutters can relate.
Homeowners often turn to gutter guards in hopes of eliminating the necessity of timely gutter cleaning or the reoccurring and costly structural repairs that come with poorly maintained gutters. But, as beneficial as the right gutter guards for your home may be, you will still need to spend a bit of time maintaining them.
So, is it really worth the hassle for you to purchase and install them on your home? Or, should you forget all about gutter guards and move onto some other popular home improvement idea that makes more sense? Let’s take a closer look and find out.
Why Do You Want or Need Gutter Guards?
Maybe you are not as young and agile as you used to be, or you are afraid of heights. Or, it could merely be that you’re either tired of shelling out the cash once, twice, possibly even three times a year for someone to clean your gutters, or that you are just over wanting to have anything to do with scooping out heaps of wet and rotting leaves from your gutters for several hours each year.
Most people want gutter guards for one of two reasons; it saves them time, money, or both. Once installed, they offer additional benefits than just saving time and money:
- Gutter guards can prevent pests, like rodents or insects, from making your gutter system their home and breeding grounds.
- They can also save you from extensive and expensive home repairs, like remodeling your roof peaks or replacing the fascia along the roof-line of your home, following water damage.
- Even insulation and siding may be better protected with the right gutter guards on your home.
Whatever the case may be, ask yourself why it is that you feel the need for gutter guards and how much will your home benefit from them.
How Much Time Will it Take to Install Them?
Depending on the type of guards you choose for your gutters, it can take anywhere from a couple of hours to a full workday to properly install them on your home.
The main types of gutter guards include:
- Reverse Curve
Screen guards consist of a grid-like pattern woven out of wire or hard plastic materials. They are normally among the quickest to install, as well as mesh and micro-mesh. The main difference in screen and mesh type guards is that the holes are much smaller on mesh and micro-mesh than they are on screen types. Reverse Curve gutter guards are a bit more heavy-duty and may require hardware like brackets or screws, which can add quite a bit of time to the installation process.
Keep in mind that DIY installation isn’t even always an option, regardless of how much time it takes. Some of the very best gutter guards, like LeafFilter, must be installed by professionals, even if you are handy enough to do it yourself. The upside to these guards, despite them being more expensive, is that they are typically tailor-made for your home.
How Much Money Are You Willing to Spend?
If you are set on installing gutter guards, you need to decide which type of guards best suit your home and budget. Generally speaking, you should expect to pay around $5 or so per foot for the gutter guards themselves. If you shop around, you can find some products as inexpensive as $0.25 to $0.75 per foot. On the higher-end of the spectrum, more expensive guards can run you up to $6 or $7 per foot.
In addition to the price of the gutter guards themselves, also consider installation costs. If you install the guards yourself, you will cut the overall cost tremendously. But, if you lack experience in making home improvements, we strongly recommend hiring a professional. Improperly installed guards are not likely to do you any good.
Professional gutter guard installation services may cost anywhere from $10 to $20 per foot, depending on where you live, the length of your gutters, and the company you hire. The plus side to the extra cost is that you normally get some sort of workmanship warranty in addition to the guarantee or warranty options that come with the gutter guards.
Are Gutter Guards Worth It for You?
Installing gutter guards will cost you time and money. Once in place, they will reduce the amount of work it takes to upkeep your gutters, though they will not do away with it completely. Even homes with the best guards on their gutters still need their gutter systems maintained with an annual cleaning.