It seems that today everyone is trying to “build a better mouse trap” when it comes to rain gutter leaf protection. Gutter filters, gutter foam products, the gutter brush, etc. are all hot topics as America’s Baby Boomers reach retirement age and are looking for ways to reduce the amount of maintenance they are required to do on their homes.
So, do they work?
Sure, they all work to some degree. Let’s take a closer look at some of the different styles and the good / bad features of each:
There are several gutter filters on the market today. Most work great for a while.
Products that are made from natural fibers are prone to many problems due to UV rays. They have a protective coating, but can’t hold up. They are prone to shrinkage, breaking down and are usually very thick, which can inhibit the water from traveling horizontally in the gutter.
Other rain gutter filter products are made from nylon or plastic. These are generally much thinner than natural fiber filters and can hold up to the elements a little better. But they can be difficult to install, sometimes requiring the installer to silicone them in place.
Foam gutter filters
I’ve tested two types of foam filters. UV rays were a problem here also. Both were disintegrating after only one season. They take up a lot of room in the gutter, slowing the flow of water.
Foam filters are the easiest product to install. They are dark, so they will attract heat, and you can’t see them from the ground, but they are the first one torn out of the gutters.
Most of all, use common sense when choosing a leaf protection product. Think about your home and the type of debris that you deal with. Check a product out and make sure your not throwing your money away.