ArmourGuard vs. Micro Mesh & Screen Gutters Guards
Fine Screen Mesh Systems
Fine Mesh Gutter Guards are gaining market share as the preferred gutter guard system. Micro Mesh Gutter Covers are the only completely sealed system that prevents debris of any size to enter the gutter and create a potential water damage problem.
Most Micro Mesh guards have two components, a frame and stainless steel mesh. This, however, is where the similarity ends as each manufacturer will use different types and quality of materials and use different methods to manufacturer those products. We also want to point out that these differences will dramatically alter the performance.
The frame for example can be made from extruded aluminum, aluminum sheet metal or even plastic. Additionally, those that use aluminum or sheet metal use different types of coating to enhance the performance.
Extruded aluminum frames are by far the best. The materials cost more, but they offer long term durability. Another benefit of extruded aluminum is that they can be anodized to protect the finish. This allows them to be installed on copper and steel gutters. Sheet metal guards are typically very thin (.017-.027 thick) which damages easily and will, even if painted, interact with copper and steel and corrode over time.
Micro mesh gutter guards made with plastic frames are generally the worst. Not only do they lack durability, they have a tendency to warp in hot and cold temperatures. When the frame warps it loses its ability to capture water and, in many cases, the mesh will come loose and detach from the frame (see photos and video).
There are different grades of stainless steel, but generally the type used in fine mesh systems are 304, 308, 316 and 316L. The 304 and 308 are low grade stainless that will corrode quickly. The very best is 316L which is a surgical grade and is used in underwater or medical applications.
Additionally the micro mesh comes with a variety of hole sizes. The most common micro mesh screens are 50 mesh or 30 mesh. The 50 mesh has holes so small that even the smallest debris or shingle grit will not penetrate the mesh. Other manufactures use a larger hole configuration such as 30 mesh or even as large as 18 mesh. We recommend the 50 mesh or 30 mesh systems.
Manufacturing processes vary greatly and can either enhance the performance or detract from it. For example, several companies crimp the sheet metal and frame using automatic presses. This process will typically damage the screen and the frame in such a manner that they will fail over time. When crimping aluminum with stainless steel you create an environment for galvanic action that will lead to corrosion.
The preferred method is to glue the screen into the frame that will allow a separation between the mesh and frame. Using a rubberized adhesive to glue the mesh in place is the best as it will stretch with expansion and contraction due to heat and cold always allowing the screen mesh to remain tight to the frame. This will create better capillary action which allows more water to pass through the screen in downpours.
One caution, however, one manufactures glues the screen to a plastic frame in the field using a variety of silicone adhesives. On many occasions the installers do a poor job or use a low grade silicone. Silicone adhesives will become brittle over time and will cause the mesh to break loose then fail. (see photos and video).
Installations will also vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. Some will install under the shingle at the same pitch as the roof, others will install flat on the gutter. When installed flat the on the gutter, debris will not fall naturally to the ground but will accumulate on the guard itself. In extreme cases this will not allow water to evacuate properly through the screen.
Installing under the shingle allows the guard to be at the same pitch as the roof. With this type of installation the debris simply blows off or falls to the ground. There are plus and minus's to both, for example some shingle manufacturers will void the shingle warranty if the edge of the roof in modified in any way. If it lays flat then the guard may clog.
What is the best scenario? Every home is different so you will have to weigh both options or use a guard such as ArmourGuard that can be installed at the same pitch but not under the shingle.
ARMOURGUARD STANDARD AND SUPREME:
All ArmourGuard Products are the “fine screen mesh” technology that is rated #1 by Consumer Reports. Our Micro Mesh Systems are the best in the industry because they are made from the best materials. Our extruded aluminum frame offers strength and durability in harsh conditions that gutter guards made with plastic cannot provide. Our engineers have added additional protection by anodizing the frame. This process not only hardens the aluminum, but makes it compatible for use with copper and steel gutters.
The Micro Screen Mesh is available in either 50 or 30 micron Surgical Grade 316L Stainless Steel which has holes so tiny that, not matter how small the debris, only water can pass through keeping your gutters clean and clog free.
Our Fine Mesh and Durable Frames are sealed with a High Grade Rubberized Adhesive that never gets hard or brittle. It’s designed to stay pliable which holds the Mesh in place regardless of the ambient temperature.
Homeowners choose ArmourGuard gutter protection to safeguard their homes from clogged gutters caused by falling leaves and debris. Clogged gutters can cause a host of problems such as soffit and fascia rot, dangerous mold growth, and water damage to basement and foundations.
Climbing ladders to clean out their gutters is dangerous and ArmourGuard gutter guards will eliminate the potential health hazards that befall 185,000 every year. Only All Weather Armour offers a wide range of gutter covers that are designed for your homes unique weather or leaf and debris conditions.