Pros and Cons of Gutter Guards

There are gutter professionals who strongly feel that gutter guards do a good job of preventing debris from landing in the gutters. Other gutter professionals think that leaf protection systems might actually encourage plant growth and be detrimental in the long run. However, many homeowners claim gutter guards are advantageous to gutter maintenance. Weigh the pros and cons of gutter guards and decide for yourself.

Pros of Gutter Guards

There are a number of different types of gutter guards, but they are all designed to do the same thing – keep out leaves, twigs, etc. while letting water flow through the gutters to the downspout. The pros of have a gutter guard system include:

  • can be added to existing gutters
  • prevents birds and squirrels from building nests
  • reduces the number of times per year gutters need to be cleaned
  • keeps “intact” debris from getting into the gutter channel
  • helps deter standing water and the resulting insect problems it can promote
  • can filter out contaminants, particularly relevant if using a rain barrel

Cons of Gutter guards

It goes without saying that some gutter protection products work better than others. However, the biggest downside of gutter guards is the marketing claim that homeowners will never have to clean their gutters again. The other cons of installing some type of leaf protection are:

  • can be expensive
  • can be difficult to maintain if it is a kind of gutter guard system that is secured in place
  • buyer beware! – some gutter guards are more hype than functional design
  • not as efficient at keeping out smaller sized bits of debris
  • types of leaf protectors that lay on top of the gutters tend to get moved around or blown away by the wind
  • some types of leaf protection systems are better suited to a particular climate and might not work as well in other locations

When a gutter guard system is the right one for your home and climate region, it can be effective in reducing the amount of debris in your gutters. If you’re not sure about adding leaf protection, a gutter professional can help you select a system that’s efficient and cost-effective.