What are Gutter Screens?
Gutter screens are used to help keep bigger debris from clogging your gutter system. The industry standard for gutter screens are a spread steel or a cut of poly material aluminum. Typically, the hole is diamond shaped and the diameter of the hole is about 3/8 inch. This is much larger than what you would imagine if you are thinking about a window screen.
How Do Gutter Screens Work?
Gutter screens are for large debris only. They keep out twigs and leaves but most other types of debris can still get in. You may start to get small to medium sized debris filling up the bottom of the gutter. This will need to be cleaned to prevent clogging. The easiest way to clean gutters with screens is just to remove the screen while cleaning. Usually you will only need to do this sort of cleaning every 3 to 4 years.
Installation is extremely easy as the screen usually just snaps on. No screws are required. You will need to cut the screen to fit under the shingles or against the back of the gutter.
Gutter Screen Cost
Gutter screens can cost anywhere from $1 to $3 per square foot. Make sure you know what you are buying because gutter screens are different form micro screens.
Gutter Screens Don't Keep Your Gutters Cleaned
Gutter screens do not keep your gutters cleaned. They simply keep out larger debris. Every three years they have to be removed and the gutters still have to be cleaned. Gutter screens are susceptible to damage from stepping on the roof, or tree limbs. They get damaged easily so keep this in mind.
Because of the large three inch diameter diamond shaped holes, twigs, leaves and pine needles can get stuck in the screen itself. When this happens you can’t just use a leaf blower to clear it out. You have to hand pick the debris from the holes. Sometimes it is better to just buy a new screen if this happens because it is a lot of work to get them clean.
Gutter Protection is Required if You Have an Underground Drain
If you have installed an underground drain system, it is imperative that you have something protecting your gutters You absolutely need to keep your underground drainage system clear. If you don’t have the budget for gutter guards, the gutter screen will suffice.
A good gutter screen can serve as something temporary to keep debris from making it to your underground drainage system. It is really hard to repair an underground drain. If you are not able to get on a ladder and keep the gutters cleaned to two to three times per year like you should, a gutter screen is a good option.
Use gutter screens in a situation where you don’t have the budget for gutter guards. If you have an underground drain this is very important. In situations where you will be selling a home and you need to protect it for three or four months, gutter screens are an affordable option. That way the new homeowner can make the decision and you won’t have to deal with the expense of gutter guards.