10 Best Gutter Guards for Leaves, Pine Needles & Debris
Gutter guards keep debris, leaves, and pine needles from clogging your rain gutters. But which should you buy? What are the benefits? What is the ideal type for your gutter system? Our home improvement specialists have carefully prepared the top 10 list of the best gutter guards on the market and a buying guide to keep yourself away from the troubles of cleaning it.
10. Frost King Plastic Guard ($4.08)
As a roll of plastic mesh, Frost King Plastic Guard is a universal gutter protection system that will handle most debris that tumbles into the spouting. The role is 20 feet long, 6 inches wide, and will suit all residential guttering. Once you unroll it, slice it to fit, then mount it under the roof tiles. This gutter leaf guard then gets the right to work, blocking large debris from causing blockages. The only drawback is the time it takes to install it. Installation can be complicated with all the cutting and securing in place, but it will be efficient once it’s in place.
- Keeps out leaves, debris, and dirt;
- You can cut mesh to fit;
- It unrolls easily;
- Affordable price;
- Universal fit.
- It needs a long time to install.
9. GutterStuff Guard ($51.00)
The GutterStuff Guard is made of durable foam and can be utilized year-round to protect the gutters from sticks, leaves, and other debris to cut down on maintenance and cleaning. These foam gutter guards clog and also reduce standing water in the gutters to stop mosquitoes from breeding in the gutters around your house. It comes in several sizes to fit most types of gutters. The foam is simple to install and can be done without tools. Just push each segment into place in the gutters. Trimming is easy and can be performed with a razor knife or any serrated blade. This model features improved UV protection to make the polyether foam last longer in direct sunlight.
- Lightweight and easy to install;
- Enables large volumes of water through without letting debris to collect in the gutters;
- Fits entirely into the gutter so it can’t be seen;
- Foam stops pine needles;
- Doesn’t put pressure on the gutters.
- The foam may not last as long as aluminum gutter guards.
8. Ultra Flo Leaf Guard Gutter ($104.00)
Ultra Flo is a screen-type model with the qualities of almost all types of gutter guards. It features a fine mesh that can halt the larger size debris, mainly leaves, and prevent their entry into the gutter structure. The aluminum mesh is strong, durable, and light in weight. In terms of installation, this model is a breeze. Instead of being like other screen gutter protectors that are to be tied to the shingles, these are armed with snap locks. These snap locks make it easy to attach to the gutter rails. Also, this device comes in five different sizes and arrangements.
- Easy to install with the snap locks;
- Friendly for budget buyers;
- Extremely durable;
- 5 different screen arrangements;
- It can be modified for nonstandard types.
- Very likely to rust over time.
7. Smart Screen Aluminum Gutter Guard ($36.62)
The Smart Screen Aluminum Gutter Guard is constructed from a heavy-duty and durable metal that claims to improve the strength of the gutters. Even though it can be snapped onto the top of the gutter, both the front and back edges can be reinforced to ensure it remains in place through heavy rain or high winds. Additionally, the rounded front lip that sits over the gutter’s outside edge directs the water into the gutter. However, it may also keep debris from flowing off the guard and hold it on top. It also only come in short sections, so be prepared to buy a lot of them if you have a larger house.
- Keeps gutters from the twigs, leaves, pine needles, and maple seeds;
- A smart screen prevents pests from building nests in the gutters;
- Budget-friendly and effortless to install;
- Front/rear fasteners protect against damage caused by snow, ice, and high winds;
- Patented, all-aluminum heavy-duty construction enhances gutter strength.
- Installation instructions could be difficult for newbies.
6. A-M Aluminum Gutter Guard ($64.99)
A-M Aluminum Gutter Guard is one of the best guards for metal roofs in the USA. These guards are made of rustproof aluminum, which will keep your roof from gaining any surface rust where the two come together. They aren’t only covered for a certain amount of years. Instead, it includes a complete lifetime guarantee. It means that if anything happens to these guards any time after you buy them, the supplier will completely replace them at no additional cost to you. These filters feature an impressive 380 holes per linear foot, which will protect against any clogs. However, they don’t come with any installation screws, so ensure to choose some screws that won’t rust.
- Keeps out all sizes of debris;
- Lots of sizes available;
- Lifetime warranty and easy to install;
- Sections interlock;
- No installation screws included.
5. E-Z Gutter Guard ($49.90)
E-Z Gutter Guard is aluminum, so rust isn’t a worry. The relatively tight mesh will keep out most debris, even though some smaller items, like pine needles, may slip through. They install easily, and can also be smoothly removed if gutter maintenance is necessary. Plus, no clips or screws are required, as these gutter guards easily snap into place on the gutter. The aluminum holds tension good and will sustain during harsh weather, but still remove effortlessly for any maintenance. They are designed specifically for 5” K-style gutters and won’t work in other applications. Also, aluminum is more durable than plastic and not susceptible to UV light deterioration.
- Made of durable and heavy-duty aluminum;
- Tension-designed to remain in place during heavy rain and high winds;
- The tight mesh keeps most debris out of the gutters;
- Easy to mount on most gutters;
- Snaps off quickly for gutter maintenance.
- Not engineered for use on plastic gutters.
4. The Wedge Downspout Gutter Guard ($18.99)
The Wedge Downspout Gutter Guard is one of the most unique and best gutter downspout guards on the market. It has a wedge shape that aids in the flow of water. The wedged design helps the flow of water down the gutter into the downspout and filters out the leaves. These guards can fit almost any type and size of the downspout and are very efficient in their function – trapping the leaves flowing around with water. Consequently, it allows the accommodated debris to flow through along with the water in the gutters. Plus, these are plastic gutter guards, which cuts down the costs much more.
- Easy to care for and affordable to buy;
- Doesn’t require any tools for installation;
- Made in the USA;
- Stops downspouts from clogging.
- The downspout hole is quite small to deal with the large volumes of water.
3. AmeriMax Metal Lock-In Gutter Guard ($79.44)
The Metal Lock-In Gutter Guard from AmeriMax may be one of the simplest guards to install. Each segment is a single piece of metal mesh, with a curved end that snaps onto the gutter’s outside edge and a flat end that slides under the roof shingles. It’s made from durable and can stand up to changing weather, but is also covered in a powder coat paint finish to beat rust. The manufacturer covers this product with a 10-year warranty that can be used on 3 different sizes of K-style gutters – 4″, 5″ and 6″. Additionally, the guard’s snap-on curved end means that tools aren’t necessary for installation, making it easy for all homeowners to use.
- Straightforward installation;
- It blends with the roof;
- It keeps out most of the debris;
- Generous warranty period;
- Robust materials that handle elements.
- Doesn’t come with the instructions.
2. FlexxPoint Gutter Cover System ($84.00)
Gutter cleaning can be a messy chore, but if you purchase this gutter cover system from FlexxPoint, you will solve this issue automatically. The manufacturer claims they last for 30 years, which is an impressive feature. FlexxPoint Gutter Cover System is available in 8 sizes with 5-inch lengths and is effortless due to the 4-foot sections. You can also choose a black, brown, matte, or white color and enjoy how they blend into their surroundings. These guards stop blockages, don’t clog up, and allow a high volume of water to get through. These are the best gutter guards for pine needles made in the USA that come with stainless steel fasteners.
- Perfect for residential housing;
- Block debris from entering your home;
- Allows a high volume of water and don’t clog;
- Hassle-free installation with a 30-year warranty.
- Comes with stainless steel fasteners.
- Seeds can get stuck in the holes.
1. Stainless Steel Micro-Mesh Raptor Gutter Guard – Best Overall ($114.90)
Stainless Steel Micro-Mesh Raptor Gutter Guard is considered the best in the industry when choosing the top models for 2021. These micro mesh gutter guards only let water through and restrain all kinds of dirt and debris that can later clog up and damage your gutters. Its body is made of stainless steel and provides it with much-needed sturdiness and strength. This strength enables it to withstand the harshest of the weather and climate. It comes in a box of 6 pieces that cover 4’ each and can cover a total area of 24’. The installation requires only tightening it up with screws.
Features to Consider before Purchasing
With such a broad range of possible best gutter protection products, it can be challenging to narrow down the options. There are certain things to look for to ensure that your gutter filter will be efficient and durable.
- Installation – If you aren’t much of a DIY specialist, you should weigh up the ins and outs of purchasing gutter screens that demand intense installation. Some of the finest systems on the market take the longest time to mount, but it pays off. Others work reasonably well and need no time at all. Therefore, find a balance between effectiveness and installation time;
- Compatibility – Everyone’s home spouting is different. Some are 3 inches; others are 4, 5, or 6 inches. Therefore, you need to be sure the guttering system will fit your residence by finding out what the fabricator recommends;
- Materials – Pay attention to durability and content. Aluminum tends to be the most popular and durable, but it’s troublesome in extreme winter weather. Plastic is pliable and affordable, but it can be brittle, too. Foam can also be worth taking into account, but it can rot during time. Weigh up the pluses and minuses and choose the best material for your climate;
- Warranty – Like any home renovation purchase, it makes sense to seek a good warranty on the gutter guard system. By doing so, you will be protected if the system should fail after you have bought and installed it.
This section will go through everything that you must know to find the best gutter covers for your property.
The 3 main types of gutter guards are screen, mesh, and reverse curve (surface tension)— and each has its own set of benefits. Most of them come in 3-foot to 8-foot lengths, with widths designed to cover gutters ranging from 4 inches to 6 inches wide.
- Screen – They feature a plastic or wire grid that installs by raising the roof shingles’ bottom row and then sliding the screen’s edge beneath; therefore, the shingles’ weight holds it in place. These are the easiest to install – often, no tools are required;
- Mesh – These are similar to screen models, enabling water to run through small holes while blocking debris and twigs. They are available in either metal or plastic mesh and install in 3 primary ways — by slipping the flange under the first row of shingles, snapping it directly onto the gutter’s top, or attaching an edge to the fascia;
- Reverse curve – They are made of molded plastic or lightweight metal, and water doesn’t flow through them but around a downward curve and over the top before falling into the gutter beneath. Debris and leaves slide right off the edge and fall to the ground below. To work correctly, the guard strips should be installed at the same angle as the roof slope.
Gutter guards can dramatically reduce the amount of maintenance you need to do on your house. Continue reading to learn more about the core benefits of installing gutter guards.
- Save time and money – Debris such as branches, leaves, pine needles, and shingle granules accumulate in downspouts and gutters. To prevent clogs, you need to clean your gutters. You might also hire a gutter cleaner now and then. With guards, your gutters and downspouts are protected from debris, so you invest less time and money cleaning them;
- Reduce ice dam formation – Winter is bad for gutters. Water can accumulate in them, especially if they are clogged. It can refreeze and cause ice dams to form. Ice dams are destructive. They often lead to water damage in the roof and other components of the house. They can also shorten the life of the roofing system and the gutters. Guards can hugely reduce ice dam formation, particularly when they’re equipped with heating;
- Fire protection – Twigs and leaves that collect in the gutters and downspouts are a fire hazard. All it takes is a BBQ or a bonfire nearby. Flying embers can light the dry debris in the gutters, causing a fire. As gutter guards obstruct the accumulation of debris, the risk of a fire starting this way is notably reduced;
- Prevent animal infestation – Animals like birds and rats can use your gutters as nesting areas. Their droppings can contribute to clogs too. Insects like ants can also take up residence where nests are present. Guards prevent animals from using your gutters as their home or as highways to get into your roof;
- Corrosion/rust prevention – When moisture ridden leaves and debris sits in the gutters, it increases the possibility of corrosion and/or rust forming in the gutters. These guards are engineered to prevent pine needles, leaves, and other debris from accumulating in the gutters. As a result, they can extend the life of the gutters with corrosion and rust prevention;
- Improve gutter water flow – They can bolster water flow through your downspouts and gutters since they prevent them from clogging up. This can be a great benefit, especially if you have a rainwater tank. The guards will help the tank refill more quickly when it rains. The tank will have cleaner water that’s more filtered of debris and contaminants;
- Stop blockages – If the gutters overflow during heavy rain periods, they may be clogged or blocked and benefit from gutter guards. Overflowing gutters are dangerous since this can let water damage the foundation or cause water to enter the home. Besides, gutters that overflow can also result in those unsightly stains on the exterior of the house.