Gutters: The First Line of Home Defence?

Gutters: The First Line of Home Defence?

by | Dec 13, 2021 | Bushfire & Ember Guard

Start a Google search with “protect your home from…” and you’ll quickly discover that our homes are subject to a number of threats.  

In Australia, you won’t be surprised to learn that three of the main threats that concern home owners are bushfire, pests and flooding.  

But what might surprise you is that it’s the humble rainwater gutter that forms the first line of defence against all three of these threats. 


Gutters and bushfire 

85% of homes that burn down during bushfires are destroyed by embers setting them alight, not from exposure to the fire front.

So, what does this have to do with your gutters?

Embers from bushfires can set your home alight by landing on debris in your gutters. By covering your gutters with ember guard compliant gutter mesh with an aperture of 2mm or smaller, you can not only keep most leaves out of your gutters (and therefore remove a key source of bushfire fuel) – you should also be able to be confident that the mesh will keep embers out as well. Equipping your home in this way helps your gutters form the first line of defence against ember attack.

Gutters and pests 

Unwanted furred, scaled and feathered visitors can damage your home and spread disease. You only have to think about mosquitoes – the smallest pests of all – to understand the health implications of pests in your home. And we all know that pest removal and fixing the damage these pests leave behind can cost thousands of dollars.

Unprotected gutters are an easy entry point into your home for a range of pests including rats, possums and snakes. But as the key to this problem, your gutters are also the key to solving it.

By properly installing gutter mesh as a gutter guard, you can cover the gaps between your roof and gutters, preventing the entry of pests large and small, and ensuring your gutters form the first line of defence against pests intent on entering your home.

Gutters and flooding 

Overflowing gutters are one of the top four reasons water enters homes during storms and high rainfall. This storm-induced flooding often affects your home’s foundations, roof and ceilings. It can destroy your possessions, threaten your health and cost you thousands upon thousands in repairs.

In most cases, gutters overflow because they’re clogged by debris. This debris may include leaves, dead animals, nests, tennis balls and other items that end up on your roof. But while overflowing gutters may threaten your home, clear and optimally functioning gutters are the best defence against rain-induced flooding.

Aluminium and steel over-the-gutter gutter mesh with an appropriate aperture (hole size) for the leaves in your area can keep your gutters largely clear of debris. Aluminium and steel are both strong enough to keep out tennis balls and animals, while smaller apertures ensure leaves won’t enter either. As such, appropriate gutter mesh can prevent clogging and transform your gutters into the first line of defence against flooding in your home.

Defend your home 

Blue Mountain Co’s extensive range of steel and aluminium gutter mesh products ensures that you can find the right gutter mesh for your situation, location and budget – mesh that will provide the first line of defence for your home.  

To discover which mesh options are most appropriate for your home, use our Mesh Matcher tool today.


Blanchi & Leonard, Investigation of Bushfire Attack Mechanisms Resulting in House Loss in the ACT Bushfire 2003, 2005
Standards Australia, Construction of Buildings in Bushfire-Prone Areas, 2009