Here are eight major changes Alex Higginbotham introduced with klean gutters to further advance his microfiltration gutter guard technology. He likes to call them the “Evolution of the Revolution”, the “revolution” being his original, innovative technology (LeafFilter®) that started a change in the gutter guard industry, the “evolution” being what he changed with klean gutters to make it work even better than before.
Just like you wouldn’t buy an older iPhone once the latest design is announced, make sure you’re investing in the latest in microfiltration gutter guard performance and technology. We’re the only company that Alex Higginbotham works with, so you can rest assured you’re getting the latest he’s got to offer.
The aluminum body of klean gutters expands and contracts in an identical manner to the gutter itself. The stainless steel filter is also a similar material, so it expands and contracts in a similar manner as well. Alex Higginbotham found dissimilar materials expand and contract at different rates, which can lead to gaps between panels, waves in the system or even the stainless steel filter popping out.
Extruding a gutter guard of plastic or aluminum creates a cumbersome system that doesn’t adjust to the imperfect roof and gutter conditions you’ll find on any home. Thin, flexible aluminum solves the problem, since by adding bends to the metal, you can create inherent strength. Has an installed klean gutters panel ever broken in two once installed? Never. In fact, it bounces back into place should something hit it. The energy is transferred elsewhere, something a thick, extruded microfiltration gutter guard isn’t capable of doing.
Micro mesh gutter guards should interlock because interlocking panels keep the system from separating at the seams. Separated seams lead to debris getting into the gutter below. Additionally, they cause water to track forward at the filter edge, tracking water off the gutter guard. Higginbotham found that interlocked panels in combination with our G-MN Gasket also stopped a black stripe forming on the face of the gutter where the panels came together.
klean gutters uses a special glue to hold the filter into the body of the product. Alex Higginbotham chose a glue that is used to install windows into skyscrapers. Our glue starts as a solid, is heated to over 375° and provides a consistent bead of glue into which the edges of filter become embedded. The glue goes back to its solid state in a matter of seconds as it cools.
Gluing is now an automated step of the manufacturing process. This ensures consistency in the panels we produce. Our glue is also covered, so it is not exposed to UVA/UVB spectrum rays which can potentially break down other sealants. Alex found dealers and their installers were not consistent when they glued the filter into both sides of each panel by hand. They also disliked the extra time they had to spend on this step, which caused many to take short cuts with the sealant, leading to problems in the field. It just made sense for him to take control of such a critical part of the system by factory installing it.
From Sitting Flat on the Gutter to Integrating With Your Roof
Creating a link between the roof shingle and the gutter ensures a completely enclosed system. klean gutters acts as a drip edge, ensuring the water flows forward and away from your fascia board (which can rot over time if exposed to water). Linking the shingle to the back of the microfiltration gutter guard meant the filter’s entire surface would be exposed to rainwater. Covering part of the filter with shingles only wound up reducing the product’s water receiving area.
Alex Higginbotham found it was not uncommon to have shingles covering over half the filter, since most gutters were hung touching the underside of the last row of shingles. It meant his gutter guard sat virtually flat and couldn’t shed a build up of small, tightly knitted debris. Airflow couldn’t get to all parts of the filter where debris got lodged as well.
Klean gutters mirrors the pitch of the roof. This approach minimizes your need to maintain the system since this design uses airflow down the roof to better shed debris.
Our installation methodology has been approved by four major roof shingle manufacturers: GAF, CertainTeed, Owens-Corning and IKO (representing the majority of the shingle industry) not to void their shingle warranties.
From Gravity Fed to HydroVortex Technology
A system can’t be pitched with the roof line without relying on something other than gravity to pull water through it. There’s just too much momentum in the water to stop its forward flow without klean gutters’s HydroVortex Technology. HydroVortex Technology causes water to change its direction, stopping it’s forward flow, once it hits our filter. In fact it’s the reason why we can take water vertically. (Ask your dealer to see this; it’s unique to us!) It also improves klean gutters’s ability to self klean of microscopic debris and roof oils better than if it sat flat. Originally, this technology relied on gravity and only used the upward legs to pull water into the filter. Alex couldn’t add pitch to it without water running right over the filter, he had to create something different to take water at steeper angles.
Klean gutters now custom weaves its filter to the parameters of the Higginbotham Ratio: a ratio of thread diameter to threads per inch. We use a denser and softer cloth than you’ll find in standard filters because those qualities help klean gutters take water better. A microfiltration gutter guard with the MicroVortex microfilter name is ensured it will meet the parameters of the Higginbotham Ratio. The MicroVortex microfilter reduces the amount of water that flows over the filter, creating “underflow”, which helps klean the filter, instead of overflow, which causes water to flow over the system.
Ice Shield, our heated version of klean gutters, can efficiently and effectively heat your gutter guard if reducing icicles in the winter is an important consideration for you, particularly around entranceways. We heat under the filter to better disperse the heat through both the product and the surrounding air. Alex Higginbotham was not able to find way to heat his original technology, knowing that it would be limited by the fact that plastic is a good insulator rather than a good material to disperse heat.