Looked into this quite recently after having our gutters replaced. The general consensus from several sources, including roofers and plumbers was not to do it. One guy who quoted on the gutter job actually offered it as an option but still didn't recommend it! While it will stop leaves getting into the gutter it doesn't stop the general buildup of dirt from dust etc over a period of time. This becomes very difficult to remove because you have effectively enclosed your guttering. They will tell you all you need to do is hose it out, easier said than done because the mesh effectively diffuses the water jet or it is self cleaning from rain, the fact that gutters do need cleaning periodically regardless tends to disprove that.
Better just to bite the bullet occasionally and get up there and manually clean the gutter, if leaves are a big problem try one of the easy to remove solutions like gutter whiskers. Much cheaper too, it was going to cost over $5000 to have gutter guard installed at our place.
Another thing I was never very impressed with the people that sell this stuff, hard sell types like some of the other door knockers that try to sell you vacuum cleaners and roof guard coatings etc.
Thanks for the reply. After looking at the various websites I thought they might try the hard sell. At the moment it is a weekly all year round job keeping the gutters I'm worried about clear. Might try some of the cheap stuff and see how it goes.
Are you using filters which block at the top of the downpipes? A different option is the leafslide type things. Another option is replacing the whole gutter system with the huge oversize type like magnum.
It may be worth looking at the foam stuff. The first ones sucked but they now have been treated with anti fungal chemicals so you don't get the crap buildup. Probably would have to replace every 5 years or so though: http://gutterfoam.co.nz/
That and gutter whiskers are probably easier to maintain rather than the mesh which is a pretty permanent fixture.
Looking at the gutterfoam product details it may depend what kind of debris you are dealing with how often it needs removal and cleaning. Imho small stuff is going to build up a bit. Larger items are going to dry up and blow off in theory. In the picture there is a bit of a lip left on the edge of the gutter in the profile which might collect some items. It is not safe for drinking water (probably due to the anti-fungal treatment) but being a good greenie type citizen I would not like to contribute that treatment to the stormwater either.
Edit: They have videos showing operation but none showing what happens with debris types.
I was always a little sceptical about the whole leaf stop things that are screwed down over the roof - purely because the stuff that falls around us is not only large but also quite small particulate stuff. So stuff would still end up getting in and sitting in the gutters. I decided to just get the gutter wisker product and periodically jump on the roof (say once every 3 -6 months or so) and hose everything out. I think it is important to consider the type of matter that is falling on your roof - because what works for some might not work for others. eg pine neetles are totally different to manuka leaf etc
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