Title:
GUTTER SCREEN
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A gutter screen includes an elongated body configured to engage a portion of a gutter. The body defines a front side and a rear side and includes a rear gutter engaging member configured to engage a rear wall of the gutter and a front gutter engaging member configured to engage a front wall of the gutter. A plurality of perforated sections is disposed between the rear and front gutter engaging members. Each perforated section slopes downwardly from a rear end thereof to a front end thereof. A plurality of lipped portions connects the perforated sections. Each lipped portion attaches a front side of one perforated section to a rear side of another perforated section such that each front side is offset below the rear side connected thereto by the lipped portion.


Inventors:
Cangialosi, Sal (Oakdale, NY, US)
Application Number:
12/683074
Publication Date:
07/07/2011
Filing Date:
01/06/2010
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
52/11
International Classes:
E04D13/076; E04D13/064
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20080276552AdaptorNovember, 2008Burgess et al.
20080289296Safety bar systems and methodsNovember, 2008Weber
20080034680Modular outdoor shedFebruary, 2008Tucker et al.
20090301002SYSTEM FOR CONSTRUCTING A SEMI-PREFABRICATED BUILDINGDecember, 2009Bengoa Saez
20090313918INCLINED SKYLIT LIGHT WELLDecember, 2009Levens
20070234666INTEGRAL CONNECTORS IN TUBULAR BEAMS FOR BUILDING STRUCTURESOctober, 2007Porter
20020116889Corner web member and corner of a form systemAugust, 2002James Jr.
20100037536CONCRETE PANEL LIFTING INSERT ASSEMBLYFebruary, 2010Schulze
20060117702Table jointing deviceJune, 2006Lin
20090064617Insulated Concrete Wall Section FormMarch, 2009Montoya et al.
20060150541Stairway system having a hidden fastenerJuly, 2006Green et al.
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A gutter screen comprising: an elongated body configured to engage a portion of a gutter, the elongated body defining a front side and a rear side and including: a rear gutter engaging member extending longitudinally along the rear side of the elongated body and configured to engage a rear wall of the gutter; a front gutter engaging member extending longitudinally along the front side of the elongated body and configured to engage a front wall of the gutter; and a plurality of longitudinally-extending perforated sections disposed between the rear gutter engaging member and the front gutter engaging member, each perforated section sloping downwardly from a rear end thereof to a front end thereof; and a plurality of lipped portions connecting the perforated sections, each lipped portion attaching a front side of one perforated section to a rear side of another perforated section such that each front side is offset below the rear side connected thereto by the lipped portion.

2. The gutter screen according to claim 1, wherein the elongated body is formed from 32-gauge aluminum.

3. The gutter screen according to claim 1, wherein each lipped portion includes a plurality of perforations defined therein, the perforations facing toward the rear side of the elongated body.

4. The gutter screen according to claim 1, wherein the perforated sections include at least 48 perforations per square inch.

5. The gutter screen according to claim 1, wherein a plurality of longitudinally-aligned apertures are defined along a front-facing wall of the rear gutter engaging member.

6. The gutter screen according to claim 1, wherein the perforations defined within the perforated sections are staggered with respect to one another.

7. The gutter screen according to claim 1, wherein the gutter screen is configured for attachment to at least one of a 5 inch and a 6 inch gutter.

8. The gutter screen according to claim 1, wherein each of the perforated sections defines an upper surface and a lower surface, the upper surface having a rough texture.

9. A gutter system comprising: a gutter having a rear wall configured for attachment to a structure, a front wall and a base, the gutter defining a trough therein; and a gutter screen configured for attachment to at least one of the front wall and the rear wall, the gutter screen including: an elongated body defining a front side and a rear side; a rear gutter engaging member extending longitudinally along the rear side of the elongated body; a front gutter engaging member extending longitudinally along the front side of the elongated body; a plurality of longitudinally-extending perforated sections disposed between the rear gutter engaging member and the front gutter engaging member, each perforated section sloping downwardly from a rear end thereof to a front end thereof; and a plurality of lipped portions connecting the perforated sections, each lipped portion attaching a front side of one perforated section to a rear side of another perforated section such that each front side is offset below the rear side connected thereto by the lipped portion. wherein the gutter screen permits passage of water into the trough and inhibits the passage of debris into the trough.

10. The gutter system according to claim 9, wherein the rear gutter engaging member is configured to engage the rear wall of the gutter and wherein the front gutter engaging member is configured to engage the front wall of the gutter.

11. The gutter system according to claim 9, wherein the gutter trough defines one of a 5 inch and a 6 inch width.

12. The gutter system according to claim 9, wherein the gutter screen is made from 32-gauge aluminum.

13. The gutter system according to claim 9, wherein the gutter is made from 32-gauge aluminum.

14. The gutter system according to claim 9, wherein each lipped portion includes a plurality of perforations defined therein, the perforations facing toward the rear side of the elongated body.

15. The gutter system according to claim 9, wherein the perforated sections include at least 48 perforations per square inch.

16. The gutter system according to claim 9, wherein a plurality of longitudinally-aligned apertures are defined along a front-facing wall of the rear gutter engaging member.

17. The gutter system according to claim 9, wherein the perforations defined within the perforated sections are staggered with respect to one another.

18. The gutter system according to claim 9, wherein each of the perforated sections defines an upper surface and a lower surface, the upper surface having a rough texture.

Description:

BACKGROUND

The present disclosure relates to a gutter screen, and more particularly, to a gutter filter configured for attachment to a gutter to prevent debris from entering the gutter.

TECHNICAL FIELD

Rain gutter systems are commonly employed to collect and divert rainwater away from the foundation of a structure. Standard rain gutter systems include elongated troughs running along the edge of a sloped roof, which collect runoff rainwater from the sloped roof and channel the rainwater toward vertical pipes. The vertical pipes direct the water down and away from the structure. However, debris such as leaves and twigs may pile up within the gutter and block the flow of water through the gutter. As a result, runoff rainwater builds up within the clogged gutter until the water eventually pours over the side of the gutter and onto the ground directly adjacent the structure.

In order to prevent gutter-clogging, gutter shields have been developed to try and keep debris out of the gutter system. U.S. Pat. Nos. 2,175,521, 4,907,381 and 5,072,551, for example, employ mesh screens in an attempt to keep out debris while allowing water to flow into the gutter system. U.S. Pat. Pub. Nos. 2007/0234647 and 2008/0127575, on the other hand, disclose gutter shields having a series of channels therein that are configured to facilitate water flow into the gutter. Still other gutter shields, such as those disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 4,418,504, 5,056,276, 5,522,183 and 6,427,388, provide for gutter shields having perforations therein for allowing water to flow into the gutter. However, many of these gutter shields may become clogged with debris themselves, have openings which are too large to prevent smaller debris from entering the gutter, and/or may actually direct water flow over the edge of the gutter, rather than into the gutter. Further, many gutter shields interfere with the integrity of the roof and/or are susceptible to being compromised by birds, squirrels, and other animals.

SUMMARY

In accordance with the present disclosure, a gutter screen is provided. The gutter screen includes an elongated body configured to engage a portion of a gutter. The elongated body has a front side and a rear side and includes a rear gutter engaging member, a front gutter engaging member, a plurality of longitudinally-extending perforated sections and a plurality of lipped portions. The rear gutter engaging member extends longitudinally along the rear side of the elongated body and is configured to engage a rear wall of the gutter. The front gutter engaging member extends longitudinally along the front side of the elongated body and is configured to engage a front wall of the gutter. The plurality of longitudinally-extending perforated sections is disposed between the front and rear gutter engaging members and slope downwardly from a rear end thereof to a front end thereof. The plurality of lipped portions connects the perforated sections. Each lipped portion attaches a front side of one perforated section to a rear side of another perforated section such that each front side is offset below the rear side, with the lipped portion therebetween.

In one embodiment, the elongated body is formed from 32-gauge aluminum.

In another embodiment, each lipped portion includes a plurality of perforations defined therein. The perforations face the rear side of the elongated body.

In yet another embodiment, the perforated sections include at least 48 perforations per square inch. The perforations defined within the perforated sections may be staggered with respect to one another. Additionally, an upper surface of each of the perforated sections may have a generally rough texture.

In still another embodiment, a plurality of longitudinally-aligned apertures is defined along a front-facing wall of the rear gutter engaging member.

In still yet another embodiment, the gutter screen is configured for attachment to a 5 inch and/or a 6 inch gutter.

A gutter system is also provided in accordance with the present disclosure. The gutter system includes a gutter and a gutter screen. The gutter has a rear wall configured for attachment to a structure, a front wall and a base. The gutter defines a trough therein. The gutter screen is configured for attachment to one or both of the front wall and the rear wall. The gutter screen includes an elongated body defining a front side and a rear side, a rear gutter engaging member extending longitudinally along the rear side of the elongated body and a front gutter engaging member extending longitudinally along the front side of the elongated body. Two or more longitudinally-extending perforated sections are disposed between the rear gutter engaging member and the front gutter engaging member. Each perforated section slopes downwardly from a rear end thereof to a front end thereof. Two or more lipped portions connect the perforated sections to one another. Each lipped portion attaches a front side of one perforated section to a rear side of another perforated section such that each front side is offset below the rear side connected thereto by the lipped portion. The gutter screen permits passage of water into the trough and inhibits the passage of debris into the trough.

In one embodiment, the rear gutter engaging member is configured to engage the rear wall of the gutter and the front gutter engaging member is configured to engage the front wall of the gutter.

In another embodiment, the gutter trough defines one of a 5 inch and a 6 inch width. The gutter may also be made from 32-gauge aluminum.

Furthermore, the gutter screen of the gutter system may be configured according to any of the embodiments described above.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Various embodiments of the subject apparatus are described herein with reference to the drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a rear, perspective view of a gutter screen in accordance with the present disclosure;

FIG. 2 is a front, perspective view of the gutter screen of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a side view of the gutter screen of FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a side, perspective view of the gutter screen of FIG. 1;

FIG. 5 is a side view of a gutter for attachment thereto of the gutter screen of the present disclosure; and

FIG. 6 is a side view of the gutter of FIG. 5 having a gutter screen of the present disclosure attached thereto.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Turning now to FIGS. 1-6, gutter screen 10 defines an elongated body and generally includes a front gutter engaging member 100 extending longitudinally along the front edge of the gutter screen 10, a rear gutter engaging member 200 extending longitudinally along the rear edge of the gutter screen 10 and a recessed middle portion 300 disposed between the front and rear gutter engaging members 100 and 200, respectively. The recessed middle portion 300 includes a series of perforated sections 310, 320, 330, 340 connected to one another by lipped portions 312, 323, 334. Gutter screen 10 may be configured for use with 5 or 6 inch gutter systems, although it is envisioned that gutter screen 10 may be configured for use with gutter systems of various other dimensions. Referring to FIGS. 5 and 6, a typical gutter 500 includes an open trough 510, a front gutter wall 520 and a rear gutter wall 530, which define an inner surface 524 and an outer surface 534. Gutter trough 510 may define a width of 5 or 6 inches, although other trough widths are also contemplated. Gutter 500 may be configured for attachment to a structure in close proximity to a roof edge such that rainwater flowing down the roof spills into the gutter 500.

Front gutter engaging member 100 includes a flat, top portion 110 that extends from gutter screen 10 and is configured to sit atop shelf 522 of front gutter wall 520. Top portion 110 (and shelf 522 of front gutter wall 520) may include several screw holes 115 defined therein for securing gutter screen 10 to the front gutter wall 520. Front gutter engaging member 100 also includes a lip 120 that connects top portion 110 with perforated section 340, as will be described in more detail below. Lip 120 extends upwardly from perforated section 340 such that top portion 110 is set above perforated section 340. In other words, while top portion 110 sits atop front gutter wall 520, lip 120 extends downwardly into trough 510 of gutter 500 such that the recessed middle portion 300, including perforated sections 310-340, is positioned at least partially within gutter 500. Lip 120 may also include a plurality of apertures 122 defined therein.

Rear gutter engaging member 200 includes an elongated vertical portion 210, a top portion 220, and a lip 230. Lip 230 may include a plurality of apertures 222 defined therein. The elongated vertical portion 210 and lip 230 are generally parallel to each other and are connected by top portion 220, which is generally perpendicular to both elongated vertical portion 210 and lip 230 such that rear gutter engaging member 200 defines a longitudinal channel 240 running underneath top portion 220 and extending the length of gutter screen 10. Rear gutter engaging member 200 is configured to engage rear wall 530 of gutter 500 in a friction-fit engagement, such that inner surface 524 of rear wall 530 of gutter 500 abuts the outer surface of elongated vertical portion 210. Accordingly, the width of gutter screen 10 may be slightly larger than or equal to the width of gutter 500, such that minor flexion of gutter 500 and or elongated vertical portion 210 is needed to position gutter screen 10 within gutter 500. Alternatively, for larger width gutters, rear wall 520 may be positioned at least partially within channel 240 such that elongated vertical portion 210 abuts outer surface 534 of rear wall 530 of gutter 500, engaging thereon in a friction-fit engagement. In either configuration, the engagement of rear gutter engaging member 200 with rear wall 530 of gutter 500 obviates the need to secure gutter screen 10 on or under the roof of a structure (not shown). Such a configuration is advantageous in that the installation and presence of gutter screens disposed on or under the roof may compromise the integrity of the roof itself, leading to roof leakage and/or damage to the roof itself.

As mentioned above, a first end of lip 230 is connected to top portion 220 of rear gutter engaging member 200. Second end of lip 230 is connected to a first perforated section 310 extending from rear gutter engaging member 200 toward front gutter engaging member 100, i.e., across the gutter trough 510. First perforated section 310 slopes downwardly from rear gutter engaging member 200 toward front gutter engaging member 100. The perforations 315 defined within first perforated section 310 extend completely through first perforated section 310. The rows of perforations 315 may be staggered with respect to each other, as best shown in FIG. 4, such that the configuration of the perforations 315 defines an angled grid pattern, rather than a perpendicular grid pattern. It is envisioned, however that some or all of the perforations defined in any of the perforated sections do not extend completely though. Further, the perforations may be in a scattered arrangement, a radial arrangement, etc.

A front edge of first perforated section 310 is connected to lipped portion 312, which extends upwardly from perforated section 310 and connects the front edge of first perforated section 310 to the rear edge of second perforated section 320 such that the rear edge of second perforated section 320 is offset above the front edge of first perforated section 310. Lipped portion 312 may also include a plurality of perforations 316 therein.

Second perforated section 320 extends further across gutter trough 510 from lipped portion 312 and slopes downwardly from rear gutter engaging member 200 toward front gutter engaging member 100. As with first perforated section 310, second perforated section 320 includes a plurality of perforations 325 extending completely therethrough and staggered with respect to one another. A front edge of second perforated section 320 is connected to lipped portion 323 which extends upwardly from perforated section 320 and connects second perforated section 320 to third perforated section 330 such that the rear edge of third perforated section 330 is offset above the front edge of second perforated section 320. Lipped portion 323 may also include a plurality of perforations 326 defined therethrough.

With continued reference to FIGS. 1-6, gutter screen 10 includes a fourth perforated section 340 attached to third perforated section 330 via lipped portion 334 in a substantially similar configuration as those perforated sections 310, 320, 330 and lipped sections 312, 323, described above. A front end of fourth perforated section 340 is attached to lip 120 of front gutter engaging member 100, such that gutter screen 10 is configured to extend completely across gutter trough 510. Although gutter screen 10 is shown and described herein as including four perforated sections, it is envisioned that gutter screen 10 may be constructed with more or fewer perforated sections, depending on the configuration of the gutter and roof and on the environmental conditions expected (e.g., the weather conditions). Further, an upper surface of middle portion 300 (e.g., perforated sections 310-340) may define a generally rough texture.

Gutter screen 10 may be manufactured as a single, integral elongated body and may be manufactured into sections having a length from about 3 feet to about 6 feet. Thus, a number of sections 10 may be needed to cover the entire length of a gutter 500, depending on the length of the gutter 500 itself. Alternatively, gutter screen 10 may be manufactured in separate units of perforated sections.

Gutter screen 10 may be made from a heavy duty material, such as 32-gauge aluminum. Gutter 500 may also be made from 32-gauge aluminum or another heavy duty material. Utilization of 32-gauge aluminum is advantageous in its ability to withstand severe weather (e.g., hail and sleet) and other flying debris, although other suitable materials may be utilitzed, such as, for example [PLEASE PROVIDE OTHER MATERIALS HERE]. Further, the use of a heavy duty material, such as 32-gauge aluminum, prevents birds and squirrels from deforming and/or compromising the gutter screen 10, and helps keep these and other animals out of the gutter system 500.

During installation, as mentioned above, top portion 110 of front gutter engaging member 100 is positioned on shelf 522 of front wall 520 of gutter 500. Rear gutter engaging member 200 is engaged with rear wall 530 of gutter 500. Accordingly, gutter screen 10 extends completely across gutter trough 510. Once in position, screws (not shown) may be inserted through screw apertures 115 defined within top portion 110 of front gutter engaging member 100 to secure gutter screen 10 to gutter 500. Additional gutter screen sections 10 may then be installed end-to-end along gutter 500, as described above, such that the entire length (or desired portion) of gutter 500 is covered by sections of gutter screen 10.

Once gutter screen 10 is installed as described above, debris is prevented from entering gutter 500 between top portion 110 of front gutter engaging member 100 and front gutter wall 520 due to the mating top portion 110 and shelf 522 of front wall 520, held in place by screws (now shown). Elongated vertical portion 210 of rear gutter engaging member 200 extends downwardly along inner surface 524 of gutter 500 to prevent debris from entering gutter 500 between rear wall 530 and rear gutter engaging member 200. The middle recessed portion 300, which includes perforated sections 310-340, extends across trough 510 of gutter 500 to prevent debris from entering gutter 500 between the front and rear gutter engaging members 100 and 200, respectively. Further, the absence of deep channels defined within gutter screen 10 eliminates areas where debris can pile up, thereby clogging the gutter screen 10. Additionally, since the middle portion 300 is recessed within the gutter trough 510, gutter screen 10 is almost entirely hidden from street view, as opposed to larger, bulkier gutter screens which create an eyesore.

During a rain storm, rainwater typically flows down a sloped-roof (not shown), off the edge of the roof and onto the gutter screen 10. As best seen in FIG. 3, the middle portion 300, which includes the perforated sections 310-340, is recessed with respect to the front and rear gutter engaging members 100 and 200, respectively. Thus, as the rainwater flows down the roof and onto the gutter screen 10, it flows to the middle, recessed portion 300 of gutter screen 10 where the rainwater is able to penetrate the perforations 315, 325, 335, 345 to thereby flow into the gutter trough 510. While the perforations 315-345 are large enough to break the surface tension of the flowing rainwater, thereby allow the rainwater to pass therethrough and into the gutter trough 510, the perforations 315-345 are of sufficiently small diameter to prevent small debris, e.g., pine needles and small twigs, from passing therethrough. The perforated sections 310-340 may include about 48 perforations per square inch, although it is contemplated that more or fewer perforations per square inch may be provided, depending on the types of debris likely to be present in the particular area.

Further, each perforated section 310-340 may be sloped downwardly and away from the roof (not shown), such that the rainwater flows generally from the rear of the gutter 500 toward the front of the gutter 500 as water simultaneously flows through the perforations 315-345 and into the gutter trough 510. The generally rough texture of the perforated sections 310-340 disrupts the flow of rainwater, thereby facilitating the flow of water through the perforations 315-345 and into the gutter trough 510. In heavier rainstorms, however, the flow of water off the roof and from the rear to the front of the gutter screen 10 may be great enough to flow over the perforations 315-345 (and simply flow from back to front) due to the surface tension and adhesiveness of the water flow. In such a situation, the water flows uninterrupted down the sloped perforated sections 310-340. Once the water reaches the lipped portions 312, 323, 334, the flow is interrupted. As a result, some water flows directly into the perforations 316, 326, 336 defined within lipped portions 312, 323, 334, respectively, which are aligned substantially perpendicular to the water flow, while the interruption in flow also breaks some of the forces created by the flowing water, thereby allowing the water to flow through the perforations 315-345 in the perforated sections 310-340.

Further, apertures 122 on lip 120 of front gutter engaging member 100, which are also positioned substantially perpendicular to water flow, create a similar effect as the perforations 316, 326, 336 on lipped portions 312, 323, 334, respectively. Water flows directly into lip 120 and through apertures 122 therein, into gutter trough 510, rather than flowing over top portion 110 and over the edge of gutter 500. Similarly, the interruption in flow allows the rainwater to flow through the perforations 315-345 and into gutter trough 510. Apertures 222 on rear gutter engaging member 200 allow backflow and/or collecting rainwater to pass through apertures 222 and into gutter trough 510, rather than to collect on gutter screen 10, or flow over the edges of gutter 500.

From the foregoing and with reference to the various figure drawings, those skilled in the art will appreciate that certain modifications can also be made to the present disclosure without departing from the scope of the same. While several embodiments of the disclosure have been shown in the drawings, it is not intended that the disclosure be limited thereto, as it is intended that the disclosure be as broad in scope as the art will allow and that the specification be read likewise. Therefore, the above description should not be construed as limiting, but merely as exemplifications of particular embodiments. Those skilled in the art will envision other modifications within the scope and spirit of the claims appended hereto.