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kennykenny 12-18-2007 10:11 AM

Gutter Heaters
Has anyone had any experience with a gutter heater? I have an east facing gutter overflows with water and freezes in the winter and then when it thaws it melts and drips all over our front porch and creates a skating rink. I was thinking about installing a gutter heater that someone told me was available that might help. Has anyone used one? Do they work? If so, where can I get one? Home Depot, Lowes?? Thanks for the help!

redline 12-18-2007 05:12 PM

Why does it overflow?

Is the downspout plugged?

kennykenny 12-18-2007 05:20 PM

no, the gutter just gets filled with Snow, rain, freezing rain etc. I live in an area in which the temp. may not get above frrezing for a number of days straight so the elements don't have an opportunity to melt....

DrDave 12-18-2007 06:59 PM

A company called chromalox makes strip heaters. I have researched these for use inside Din Rails in our Control Systems. Check them out, I think they might have something for your problem.

redline 12-19-2007 03:40 AM

Do you have adequate insulation in the attic?

kennykenny 12-20-2007 08:20 AM

I have blown in additional insulation in the area of concern. It is in an area in which there is not a tremendous amount of access. Thanks !

Gutter Guy 10-21-2008 08:38 PM

Snow Guards
You might also consider installing snow guards. They're less hassle than a gutter heater.

kennykenny 10-25-2008 11:57 AM

What are snow guards? Are they available at Home Depot/Lowes? Is there a website on them? Thanks!

Ed the Roofer 10-25-2008 12:24 PM


Originally Posted by kennykenny (Post 176670)
What are snow guards? Are they available at Home Depot/Lowes? Is there a website on them? Thanks!

They are small plastic or metal protrusions, which get attached to the lower edge of the roof to prevent snow from sliding off, which is a particular concern with metal roofing.

Google Snow Guards or Snow Gems.


Gutter Guy 10-25-2008 12:56 PM

Snow Guards
That's right. We sell them on our site and you can find at least one type at Home Depot

I'm not sure these will exactly solve your problem. They're mostly designed to keep snow from cascading down your roof and causing damage. But they will help keep snow from clogging your gutters. They are zero help against freezing rain.

warmsmeallup 10-25-2008 05:41 PM

As far as the original question goes, we use the gutter cables and install them. You can get one of the types available at HD or Lowes. That type is a single temperature cable. You should always install it in double runs. That means all areas, including the downspouts, should have 2 cables in it. That's because a single run will only melt about a quarter sized hole and then it will "igloo" over.

The other type available, which is more expensive, is called self-regulating cable. It will change temperature with more severe weather. That way it uses less energy at 30* then at 0*.

You can even take them a step further and install a sensor to activate the system automatically with low temps and moisture. It will also shut off when either theh temps rise above 38* or the moisture stops.

nap 10-25-2008 06:08 PM

from the chromalox site.

I did not read up on any particular cable on that site but I would strongly suggest the self regulating cable. Theoretically you do not even need a thermostat because it is (wait for it)... self regulating and will not heat if the ambient temp is above the designed temp.

It is more expensive but it also prevents unneccessary use. Many of them can also be crossed where the non self regulating cable cannot. You will find that little bit of a difference can make a big difference in installation sometimes.

there are many brands out there. Be sure to follow directions for installation and terminations exactly as the manufacturer lists.

and be sure to use it in the down spout. That is often the root of the problem.

warmsmeallup 10-25-2008 08:07 PM

Precisely the brand we use and install.

istvan_bracz 02-02-2011 04:53 PM

Water leaking in from ice-dams

Originally Posted by warmsmeallup (Post 176801)
Precisely the brand we use and install.

Hi, I was wondering if the Chromalox gutter-heater (and roof snow/ice melter) was what you are referring to when you talked about the self-regulating cables? I priced-out THERMWIRE 6-1CR EZP Heating Cable - Roof & Gutter De-Icing - TW6-1CR-EZP at $585.00 but it doesns't tell me anywhere how MUCH cable is included here.

Thanks for all your help in this crazy weather!

warmsmeallup 02-02-2011 05:08 PM

Got your message and I'll contact you in the morning. You are right, it has been non-stop for two weeks...too bad nothing can be done until spring!

The TW6-1CR-EZP you mentioned has a few suffixes but you can get it in 100/250 and 500' lengths. The one you priced (too high) is 100' of SR cable. We are also now carrying a 10 year warranty cable. Chromalox is a 1 year warranty cable.

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