Do you need to clean your gutters if you have gutter guards?
A common misconception people have about gutter guards is they never need to think about gutter cleaning again. How we wish that were true! Unfortunately, gutters still need to be cleaned and gutter guards may even make the job more time-consuming and difficult. Here are the reasons why.
The purpose of gutter guards is to prevent debris from entering your gutters. There are a few problems that crop up due to our environment. One is pine needles. These are able to slip through seams and openings and lodge in place. The same is true for small twigs and broken leaf debris.
Another problem is moisture. It rains quite a bit here on the west coast (our current drought notwithstanding!) and that favours moss and algae growth. These green masses can grow quickly on decomposing leaf matter on top of the guard, or on material that’s made it into the gutter. Additionally, they can easily grow in the tiny holes of fine-mesh guards.
In winter, guards blocked by leaves and debris can create ice dams when water freezes. Evidence of this will come in the form of water leaking from the ceiling, walls, or around window frames inside your home.
Problems caused by gutter guards
- Needles, small twigs and leaf debris can slip through the seams or lodge in guards.
- A rainy climate causes high rates of moss and algae growth
- Gutters can still clog with decomposing debris and moss and algae.
- Ice dams can form in winter on guards blocked by leaves, moss and debris
All this stuck material needs to be removed from your gutters, and gutter guards, on a regular basis. Gutter guards may prolong the time between cleanings, but working in and around different types of guards causes the cleaning to take longer.
We hope we’ve shown why gutter cleaning is important even if you have gutter guards. When hiring gutter cleaners, make sure they have experience working with a variety of gutter guards.