50 years ago, none of the complicated gutter clog protection systems even existed, other than custom installed open screens. In the 80'sGutterHelmet came into the market with a product that, at that time, was considered ingenious; with a gutter protection design that was patent-able. People bought into the high tech concept that the water would hug the metal through "surface tension" or "hydro-static forces". Prior to this marketing effort, it had never really dawned on people that they had options to improvegutterperformance, and eliminateguttermaintenance, however this over-promising effort claiming "never clean yourguttersagain", discovered that homeowners and building owners were " ripe for the picking ". People were willing to spend big dollars with the hope of eliminatingguttermaintenance.
Back then,GutterHelmet learned that a business model was very viable. With contractors specializing in their product and effective sales and marketing, they learned that they were able to sell their "helmet or topper" at a price which was more than double the actual labor plus material costs. They learned that they could viably sell theirgutterprotection device at a price that was more than twice the actual installation costs, and an entire industry was born; more than 50% of the building owner's purchase price went towards sales, marketing and profit. This business model flourished and an entire profitable industry was born creating expectations, whether right or wrong, that people will never have to clean theirguttersagain. From then on, many complicated products have entered the market in a grab for that "pot of gold". Whether or not the product actually performed as promised became secondary to the fact that the business model could self perpetuate and forward lots of money to the executive offices. That lure of gutter guard profits caused many new and complicated products to enter the market. The sales and marketing core of these companies perpetuated a general theme ofover promising results, which has caused a bit "black eye" to the gutter guard industry.
In general, I would make these points about the Industry as a whole.
Mostgutterguard systems are very expensive, if you remove the over-promise, the customer has a much lower chance of buying at that expensive price.
There is no magic product, in the debris field, every product will require maintenance.
Gutterguard products are a series of trade-offs, if a product has a beneficial feature, there is usually a negative offsetting trade-off. (example, if it keeps small debris out it will keep water out)
GutterGuard consideration is completely different in cold winter climates as metal lineargutterproducts cause "first to freeze" and exacerbate ice problems
Installing gutterguards that intersect with the roof is risky and can cause painful expensive roof problems that are not worth the potential reward. Thesegutterguards break the rules of proper roof flashing (shelf creation)
Steep roofs and heavy rain or fast water must be considered, fast water over-shoot of thegutteris the most common disappointing problem, especiallywhen the expensive device gets dirty.
Linear productsrestrictthe water that enters thegutter; the linear nature directs the water past the edge of thegutter. (overflow or overshoot)
Many devices are difficult or impossible to maintain requiring skill , tools and fasteners to disassemble to clear clogs.
Eventually, as the market matured, the actual results came to bear for each product; both positive and negative. Every one of these products has some benefits in certain situations. Without maintenance, they all will fail at some point. The many different products that entered the market can be categorized as follows.
Gutter Screens, Open Screens
Gutter Covers, Helmet and Topper or Cover Style
Gutter Screens, Closed Screens or gutter micro-mesh
The features, benefits, and pitfalls of all of these products can be explained; too much to go over within this time slot; or you can read or watch videos to learn about each of them atwww.gutterbrush.com.
Today, thegutterguard business model is alive and well with millions of dollars going to sales and marketing. Salesmen with old style tactics continue to receive incentives for over promising results. The biggest difference today is that we can see timelywritten reviewsand read about the strong disappointment people often feel about their purchases. The biggest trends seem to be as follows.
Nogutterguard manufacturer can stop debris from laying on and being visible on the device much or all of the year.
Debris and wet leaves stick to smooth metal devices too.
People get very disappointed when newly purchasedgutterguards cause the water to overshoot.
Disappointment increases proportionately to the thousands of dollars spent. The more they spend on leaf guards, the higher the disappointment whenguttersfail to perform.
Conclusion: People love their trees and do not want to cut them down. Either cut down all of the trees , or plan for maintenance. Read reviews and pay attention. There is no magical maintenance free leaf guard product. People like less expensive products that anyone can maintain to keep them flowing properly.
Author provides details of how this clever gutter guard makes perfect sense. The low cost structure and the simplicity of easy installation; self fitting with no fastening, has provided GutterBrush with consumer leaf guard momentum that has self perpetuated for over 17 years. Customers love GutterBrush and there are so many benefits, so its no surprise that HomeDepot.com would pick it up as one of the consumers top gutter guards and an option that must always be considered.
Don't believe all of the top ten gutter guard lists you see on the internet. Most of those lists are not fair and impartial leaf guard recommendations, rather they are simple advertisements with companies paying for high placement. Do not be fooled, look at the features and benefits of the product as well as the ease of cleaning and maintaining.
Everything outdoors gets dirty and all drainage requires maintenance, after 25 years working outdoors on roofs in Rhode Island, summer and winter, the author provides a real perspective on the concept of covering the gutter with fine mesh as well as the early stinging disappointments that can follow.