Looking For The Perfect Leaf Protection Gutter? Sorry, it Doesn't Exist.

Franciscus Incorporated

Leaf Protection - Gutter Protection

You’ve heard these words over and over and over….and they are ALL the best! Just ask any one of them… Leaf Guard, Gutter Helmet, Leaf Relief, Gutter Brush, K-Guard, Gutter Topper, Gutter Remedy, Leaf Filter, Rhino and they will all tell you why they’re the best and how they work just perfectly. Here’s a secret they don’t want you to know. None of them are flawless.

The question then becomes, how much of your hard earned money do you want to spend to eliminate one problem only quite likely to create another?

The Benefits and Drawbacks

Do all or most of these systems minimize or practically eliminate leaves in the gutter?
YES!

Will they lessen the chance you’ll have to get on a ladder wearing gloves, carrying a garbage bag and garden shovel to scoop slimy, smelly gunk out of your gutters?
YES!

Will some of these systems overflow and wash out your flowerbeds and landscape?
THEY SURE WILL!

How about creating sheets of ice in places you never had before?
YEP!

Will some become the ultimate condominium and hangout for bees and wasps?
WITHOUT A DOUBT!

Leaf and Gutter Protection 101

There are basically three types of gutter guards or leaf guard systems and here are the choices along the benefits and drawbacks for each one of these systems.

1) The Cover Style (Gutter Helmet, Leaf Guard, K-Guard, etc.)

Available in a two-piece system (fits over your existing gutters), or one-piece versions (cannot use your existing gutters; a full gutter replacement is necessary).

Cover type gutters

The Benefits

Eliminates most leaves and debris from getting into your gutters and downspouts.

Eliminates the need to climb a ladder once or twice a year to clean your gutters.

Eliminates the need to hire someone once or twice a year to clean your gutters.

The Drawbacks

Reduces the intake capacity of the gutter and the result could be an overflow in heavy rains, washing out landscaping and flowerbeds.

Could freeze and magnify problems during winter months on homes that are prone to ice damming and ice backup. (i.e., more ice forming on walkways, steps or driveways).

Bees and wasps could take up residence in the shiny new condo you inadvertently purchased for them!

Mechanically fastened with screws – difficult to maintain and clean when some debris does eventually find it’s way inside the system.

Cover type gutters

Water Overflow

Cover type gutters

Bees/Wasp Nest

Cover type gutters

Bird Nest

Cover type gutters

Not Quite Maintenance Free

The Cost

$15 – $30 per linear ft. On a typical ranch house with gutters on all sides, the cost could range from $2700 – $5400 (based on 180 ft x $15/per ft or $30/per ft respectively).

The Math

Let’s just say the average service call to clean gutters from a reputable company is $125. Based on the example above, you could literally have your gutters cleaned every year for 21-43 years without any of the drawbacks listed above.

2) The Screen and Micro Mesh Style (Leaf Filter, Rhino, Leaf Relief, etc.)

Fits in most existing gutters.

Cover type gutters

The Benefits

Eliminates most leaves and debris from getting into your gutters and downspouts.

Eliminates the need to climb a ladder once or twice a year to clean your gutters.

Eliminates the need to hire someone once or twice a year to clean your gutters.

The Drawbacks

Reduces the intake capacity of the gutter and the result could be an overflow in heavy rains, washing out landscaping and flowerbeds.

Could freeze and magnify problems during winter months on homes that are prone to ice damming and ice backup. (i.e., more ice forming on walkways, steps or driveways).

Bees and wasps could take up residence in the shiny new condo you inadvertently purchased for them!

Mechanically fastened with screws – difficult to maintain and clean when some debris does eventually find it’s way inside the system.

screen type covers

Rino Gutter Guard

screen type covers

Rino Gutter Guard

screen type covers

Leaf Relief Cover

Cover type gutters

Screen Gutter Cover

The Cost - Moderately Expensive

$10 – $20 per linear ft. On a typical ranch house with gutters on all sides, the cost could range from $1800 – $3600 (based on 180 ft x $15/per ft or $30/per ft respectively)

The Math

Let’s just say the average service call to clean gutters from a reputable company is $125. Based on the example above, you could literally have your gutters cleaned every year for 13-29 years without any of the drawbacks!

3) The In-Gutter System (Gutter Brush, Gutter Stuff, Flo Free, etc.)

Fits in existing gutters.

in-gutter type

Gutter Brush

in-gutter type

Gutter Brush

in-gutter type

Flo Free

in-gutter type

Gutter Stuff

The Benifits

Eliminates most leaves and debris from getting into your gutters and downspouts.

Little or no overflow during heavy rains and the result is little or no damage to your flowerbeds and landscape.

Less likely for bees and wasps to take up residence since it’s an open system. (specifically Gutter Brush).

Eliminates the need to climb a ladder once or twice a year to clean your gutters.

The Drawbacks

Although it’s a relatively simple process, this system may need to be maintained every few years, meaning the product may need to be taken out, rinsed off with a garden hose, and re-installed.

The Cost - Least Expensive

$3- $10 per linear ft., depending on if the homeowner chooses to purchase and install the product themselves or hire a contractor to perform the work. On a typical ranch house with gutters on all sides, the cost could range from $540 – $1800 (based on 180 ft x $3/per ft or $10/per ft respectively).

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Franciscus
Franciscus Incorporated
959 Bassett Rd., Unit B
Westlake OH 44145
Phone: 440.353.3141

Franciscus of Florida, Inc.
27725 Old 41 Rd., STE 103
Bonita Springs FL 34135
Phone: 239.227.4211

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