Hanging Holiday Lights with Gutter Guards
Gutter Helmet gutter guards are a wise investment for your home. They keep leaves, pine needles, and other debris out of your gutters so runoff water flows smoothly toward your downspouts. Plus, with Gutter Helmet, there’s never a time throughout the year when you’ll need to clean your gutters!
However, there’s one season where gutter guards may cause a slight inconvenience: the holidays. If you want to hang Christmas lights, the gutter guards prevent certain types of light clips from properly attaching to your gutters. Here’s the good news: there are a few solutions to this problem, none of which require tearing off gutter guards or buying a specialized lighting system.
Attach Christmas Lights to Shingles
One approach is to simply attach your lights to your shingles rather than your gutters. If your Gutter Helmet is installed underneath your shingles, then most traditional shingle clips will work as intended. Simply sliding the tab underneath the bottom shingle and stringing the wire through the hanger portion will enable lights to be strung across your roofline easily. This look works best if the lights are viewed from a distance; and it may not be ideal if you anticipate substantial snowfall, which could envelop your lights and hide them from view.
Position Bulbs Properly
If you’d rather attach the light clips directly to your gutters, you still have some options. It’s true that many clips won’t work if they position each bulb so that it either points toward the sky or straight out from the roofline (parallel to the ground). That’s because of Gutter Helmet’s nose-forward design which extends slightly over the front edge of the gutter. However, you can purchase clips that direct the bulb either straight down toward the ground or at a 45 degree angle downward from the front gutter surface. These won’t bump up against the overhanging part of your gutter guards.
Check the Thickness of the Clip
A key factor in determining which Christmas light clips work best is its thickness at the point of attachment. With a Gutter Helmet system, the slit through which runoff water flows is 3/8 of an inch wide – which is roughly half of the length of the edge of your thumbnail. So if the fastening portion can fit through the slit and hold fast to the front edge of your gutter, it will not be affected by Gutter Helmet if the bulbs are positioned as discussed above.
Use Adhesive Light Clips
There’s also a way to hang your lights without the gutter guard or the 3/8-inch slit coming into play at all. You can opt for light clips with an adhesive backing that affix directly onto the front surface of your gutter. These moisture-resistant clips will adequately hold your lights in place without interfering with any runoff water which may flow into your gutters through the slit.
Ask For Assistance
If you go to a hardware or home improvement store to purchase your Christmas light clips, you can always ask one of the staff members to help you with the type of products you’re looking for. Just be sure to describe exactly what your Gutter Helmet system looks like (a smartphone photo of a section of your gutter guards might be a huge help), because you don’t want the associate to suggest a clip that works with mesh or screen guards but not Gutter Helmet. The important thing to remember is that you can celebrate the holiday season with colorful, sparkling lights – and enjoy superior gutter protection all year long!
Written by Chris Martin