Archive for March, 2010

Barnett’s Valley Controller Prevents Water Overflow on Roof Valleys

March 30th, 2010 3 comments
barnetts valley controller

Barnett's Valley Controller

I have to admit, this was a bit of a fortuitous phone call. I was traveling when I received a phone call from Lynn Barnett, a retired gutter installer and inventor from Ohio. He was calling to tell me about his new invention that replaces splash guards on roof valleys. See splash guards are great for keeping water from spilling over at the base of a valley, but terrible for allowing leaves and debris to fall to the ground. What invariably happens is that leaves, sticks and other matter work its way down the valley and lodge behind the splash guard. This creates a damming effect, and before you know it, you have to climb your ladder to clean the debris out from behind the splash guard. If you don’t clean this area, leaves and debris will build-up onto the roof surface, clog gutters, and water will eventually overflow around the splash guards. It’s a mess, a nuisance, and contributes to wood rot and foundation damage.

The choice until now has been to keep the splash guards in place and occasionally clean this area or remove the splash guards, which will allow leaves and debris to flow off the roof surface, but allow water to do the same, especially if you have gutter guards in place. Since this area of the roof acts more like a river due to the convergence of two roof surfaces, the water flows down the valley at a high rate of speed. This has been a classic problem for most gutter guard manufacturers. Whether your gutter guards are made from a solid material — such as aluminum or plastic — or screen, the water flow rate can be more intense than the gutter guards allow. We’ve always given our clients the option of keeping or removing the splash guards. Sure, there are things we can do to slow the water down if we remove splash guards, but it requires customization that is time consuming and difficult to consistently implement.

Nobody has ever come up with a better solution to solve this problem, until now. As it turns out, the inventor and I were both in the same town on the day of his phone call. He was visiting potential distributors throughout the southeast and I was visiting prospective clients. We agreed to meet in a Shoney’s parking lot, and when I showed up, he was sitting on the back of his camper trailer awaiting my arrival. He had set-up his sample display and I asked him to give me his sales pitch.

It didn’t take me more than 30-seconds to see how this product was going to make homeowners across the land happier. It was one of those “a ha” moments when you think to yourself, “Why didn’t I think of that.” And, believe me, I have thought plenty about how to solve this problem! So has Lynn Barnett. For Lynn, this was the culmination of being in the guttering industry for 31-years. His design, which he has been working on for five years, is slowly making it’s way onto wholesale distributor’s store shelves and may make an appearance in a gutter near you soon.

barnett's valley controller

"Cheese grater" style pattern collects water in roof valley

Here are the details about Barnett’s Valley Controller:

  • It incorporates a patented cheese-grater style top and louvered sidewall design. Water flows through the open slots into the gutter, and debris washes over the top of the surface and falls to the ground.
  • It’s made of Kostrate®, the same material as plastic water bottles.
  • The plastic is pliable, will stand up to sub-zero temperatures, and has a memory so that it can take and hold a shape.
  • It will fit on any asphalt shingle roof with or without a metal valley, and secures under the second course of shingles.
  • It’s guaranteed for 12-years, and can be painted with any acrylic paint to match your roof and gutters.

I liked the product so much, I said that I wanted to make it available directly to homeowners online. Here’s your chance to get a headstart and take care of this problem once and for all. If you have gutter guards on your home or are contemplating putting them on, this system will work with any style gutter guard. It’ll actually make your gutter guard system work better since it solves one of the most nagging issues for homeowners — excess water flow in valleys.

If you want to purchase Barnett’s Valley Controller online, we’re offering it for $24.99 with FREE shipping. Discounts are available for quantities of 3 or more. Go to to order today. To watch a video on how the system works, go to

Grow Tomatoes in Your Gutters The Hydroponics Way

March 16th, 2010 No comments

vertical harvest hydroponics farmWe recently supplied an upstart hydroponics farm in Santa Rosa, California with a large quantity of PVC gutters. When the customer called, he wanted just gutter, connectors, and plastic gutter guards to go on top of the gutters. He had no need for hangers, downspouts, and end caps — critical elements for installing PVC gutters on a home. Once I got to know him a bit, I asked what he was planning to do with the gutters, and he told me that he is going to grow tomatoes in them. While I am familiar with the concept of hydroponics gardening, I was curious to learn more, so I began exploring online, surprised to find that people all over the world are growing things in gutters. Gutters are such a great place to grow stuff we don’t want, so it’s no wonder that they’ve been adapted for food production. If you’d like to read more about this operation, Vertical Harvest, select the following link:

hydroponics tomatoes growing in gutters

Tomato Plant Growing in Dallas Homeowner's Gutters

While researching the topic, I found an article in the Dallas Morning News from October 2009 that highlighted how a local resident — who had neglected her own garden — was surprised to find a large tomato plant growing in her gutter. I’ve included a photo and a link to the story if you want to read more @

Hydroponic gardening is opening an entirely new market for gutters and food production, and depending on which side of the gutter you’re standing, it’s either time to embrace it or scoop out the debris and cover up!

Spring is here. We want to hear from you.

March 16th, 2010 No comments

Daylight savings is here. Spring is just around the corner — we hope — and homeowners across the country are emerging from hibernation to face the task of sprucing up their homes and yards. With the advent of spring comes the seasonal chore of cleaning your gutters — either what you put off from last fall or anticipating what’s to come after trees blossom and shed Maple seeds, Oak tassels and the like.

Since we started this conversation, we have received lots of great feedback and comments from homeowners trying to figure out the best gutter guard application for their homes. We’ve even heard from a handful of manufacturers commenting on reviews we’ve written about their products. It has been rewarding hearing from you, yet we’d like to hear more. We want your questions, comments and feedback.

If you’re contemplating a particular brand of gutter guard, we want to hear what you like about what you’ve seen and what concerns you. We realize that with so many choices in the marketplace, the more products you look at, the more confusing your decision can become.

In addition to scouring the Internet for information, how else do you search for gutter guards? Do you use the Yellow Pages, attend home shows, or seek referrals from friends?

Do you like solid reverse curve or micro mesh screen systems?

What do you like about each type?

What bugs you?

How much does price impact your buying decisions?

Reviews and requests for information about pricing are the most popular search terms we get on this blog. If you have received quotes for different products on your home, feel free to share that info with other readers. They want to learn from your experiences.

If you’ve bought something and love it, let us know. By the same token, if you bought something and regret your decision, readers want to know.

Don’t hesitate to ask us questions. If you like the topics we’re discussing, let us know. If you want us to write about something in particular, let us know that, too.

We’ve recently added a few features that allow you to easily share our blog stories with others. If you find the information helpful, be sure to select the “Like” icon at the bottom of each article. If you want to share our articles on Facebook, Twitter, Digg, etc., the links at the bottom of each story allow you to easily share the information with your friends, neighbors and colleagues.

Welcome to spring. Welcome to the conversation. We look forward to hearing from you!