One of our dealers sent us a video from a homeowner last week. Temperatures were below freezing in the recent cold snap, and the customer had shot a video of the micro mesh screen in MasterShield where the water was just running over the filter. We’ve included a screen shot from the video below.
It was just a little trickle and it was obvious the water was dripping from snow that was melting off of the roof. But why wasn’t the micro mesh screen taking water?
Micro Mesh Screen Will Freeze
There were probably a few things going on here, nothing that would affect normal gutter guard performance. Yes, dripping can be annoying, but we’re talking about a drip, not a waterfall.
First, it’s likely in the subzero temperatures the water in the tiny holes of the filter was frozen. We hope that wouldn’t shock anyone. The holes in any screen, window-sized or micro mesh, are small, and water can freeze across the threads. Imagine sticking a wet T-shirt out in the freezing cold, you wouldn’t be surprised after a few hours if it the water in it froze and made it stiff as a board. It’s pretty much the same thing with our stainless steel micro mesh screen.
If the micro mesh screen gets hit with direct sunlight, the sun can warm the metal in the screen to the point where it can take water again. Screen in the shade or shadows probably will continue to drip.
Please note that we don’t think that light dripping over the filter would be a reason to heat the gutter guard. It’s a minor issue, more of an annoyance than anything else. Don’t consider spending money to solve this problem. It’ll go away on its own when the temperatures are above freezing.
Heated gutter guards are better utilized in heavy snow areas or where you’ve got entranceways to your home where you don’t want dripping icicles causing the walkway, stoop or decking to become unwalkable.
Micro Mesh Screen Needs to Prime Itself
One other possibility for the drip was the fact that water was running onto the micro mesh screen without it priming itself. We discussed filter priming in an earlier post, so that we could show that it was the effect of rain falling on the micro mesh screen that initially set the direction the water would flow in. When the filter hit the screen from above, it meant that the water would be directed down and into the gutter. When water flows off the roof, it flows across the filter, so the initial direction water flows is toward the ground.
Unless you keep them heated, gutter guards aren’t designed to perform in the wintertime. Most importantly, when temperatures rise and Spring is just around the corner, if you’ve installed MasterShield micro mesh screen gutter guards, you’ll be ready for what they are designed to do: keep out all the Spring debris from budding trees and anything else the next 10 months might bring to cause your gutters to clog.