Gutter guards keep leaves, pine needles, and debris from clogging your rain gutters or downspouts. But which should you purchase? Is there a difference between a guard, a gutter screen, and a gutter cover? Which one works best for your house? And what the heck is a reverse curve?
We’re here with all the tips to help you choose the best gutter protection for your home improvement project.
The 7 Best Gutter Guards for 2021
|LeafFilter Gutter Guard||
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|GutterBrush Leaf Gutter Guard||
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|Shur Flo X Leaf Guard Gutter Protector||
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|Amerimax Home Products 86670 Snap-In Filter Gutter Guard||
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|GutterStuff 5-Inch K Style Foam Gutter Filter Insert||
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|Superior Gutter Guards||
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|LeafGuard Gutter Guard||
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Why You Can Trust Us
Keeping your gutters cleaned out can be a real pain, but it doesn’t need to be. With gutter guards, the amount of annual maintenance of your gutter system drops off drastically. Some guards even reduce the need for yearly gutter cleaning completely, but that is by no means the case with all guards. That is why you need the most accurate and no-nonsense information to help you decide which gutter guards are the best for you.
When I was a teenager, I started working as a roofer. Of course, my main jobs were tearing old layers of shingles off, and laying new ones, but every other client or so requested gutter guards to be installed. That is where I draw my experience from; years of working on roofs and exteriors of homes. Power washing, putting up new siding, rebuilding peaks and rafters, hanging gutters, cleaning gutters, and installing guards, I’ve done it all and then some.
Best Overall Option
What We Like: This guard covers your gutter, but the installation angle ensures debris will run off. You can finance this product and the warranty lasts for life.
LeafFilter uses patented technology to assure that your gutters remain clear, which reduces the dangerous, distasteful job you have to do cleaning and helps protect your home from damage due to clogged gutters. Unlike other mesh guards, LeafFilter is installed at an optimal angle ensuring no build-up on top, while still allowing the same amount of water to filter through.
The warranty that comes with these guards is lifetime-limited. And, if you choose to have them installed professionally, the service usually includes gutter cleaning, realigning, sealing, and more. Even more, there is a payment plan you may qualify for if you don’t want to pay the entire ticket price upfront.
Who Should Buy It: LeafFilter is for anyone who wants to protect their home and keep gutters from getting clogged for the long term. The installation also won’t damage your roof. Once installed, you no longer have to climb a ladder and clear debris from your gutters yourself.
Best DIY Option
What We Like: We love that this product is so easy to install, so effective, and yet is one of the most inexpensive gutter guards on the market. That said, they may not be the best choice for pine needles.
The GutterBrush is an inexpensive method to keep your gutters protected. It can block leaves, as well as other chunks of large debris. The most popular version measures six feet long, but there are longer and shorter models available if you want to cover the entire length of your gutters. This guard doesn’t require professionals to install it, and it won’t void your roof or gutter warranties either.
The system itself is very easy to install, and it fits the standard five-inch width of a gutter. The brushes are simply inserted inside the gutters and can be kept there throughout the entire year. The polypropylene bristles are made with quality UV and have a wire core made from galvanized steel. The high-end construction of this product is evident in the ten-year warranty that the manufacturer provides with it.
Who Should Buy It: The GutterBrush is a perfect product for people who are still skeptical about spending a lot of money on a product they’ve never tried before. It’s also a viable alternative for people looking for gutter guards that are inexpensive and easy to install.
Best Screw-On Option
What We Like: The professional installation guarantees that this product will be set up properly and may even come with an extra workmanship warranty in addition to the 25-year warranty from the manufacturer.
The Shur Flo X gutter guard is a product that fits directly onto the gutter, unlike other options that require installing the protector under the roof shingles. This can sometimes void the warranty of your roof, so it’s always best to leave such work in the hands of professionals. Because of the high quality of the product, and its secure mounting style, the guards come with a 25-year warranty.
What makes the Shur Flo X stand out from other similar products? The perforated filtration system is built in such a way as to allow rainwater to pass through the surface of the guards while managing to keep debris, leaves, and larger insects out of your gutters. The construction of these gutter guards also allows a generous amount of airflow to pass through its surface, keeping the gutters ventilated properly.
Who Should Buy It: If you want a gutter guard that blocks big chunks of debris but allows rainwater to pass through the drainage holes, the Shur Flo X is a great option. There will be a bunch of screws to mount the guards, so only pick this product if you don’t mind going through the setup process.
Best Snap-In Option
These easy to install guards are one of the best for filtering even the smallest debris particles, but are not for all gutter styles.
What We Like: Guards that filter out tiny particles that end up making mud in the bottom of gutters are hard to come by, which is what we love the most about this product. The lifetime warranty is also pretty great!
Amerimax has created a really good mesh-type kind of gutter guard, perfect for K-style gutters that measure four, five, or six inches. Because of the fine mesh surface, this particular gutter guard is perfectly capable of trapping small debris particles, as well as leaves, while also preventing all sorts of insects and critters from finding their way into the gutter system. Professional installation is not required.
The guards are made from rigid PVC, making them durable in the long run. They are super-easy to install because of their snap-on type of mechanism. Instructions are really easy to follow, and always make sure that the gutter guards are installed with the filters facing upwards. That said, this gutter guard comes with a lifetime warranty and does not void your current roof or gutter warranties.
Who Should Buy It: If you would like to spend money on a brand you can really trust, Amerimax is the right choice for you. Also, their product is great for people who don’t want to spend too much time figuring on how to install a simple set of gutter guards.
Best Foam Option
What We Like: You can install these guards on your entire home in just a couple of hours. We also love that they come with a germicide coating that prevents moss and seeds from growing in the gutters.
Have you ever wondered if foam gutter guards are any good? Let’s take a look at this product by GutterStuff. The foam inserts can simply slide into your gutters, and manage to successfully keep away pretty much anything that could clog your gutters. They are lightweight and easy to install, and won’t void the warranty of your roof or gutters, so you probably won’t need a professional’s help.
Because they are made from foam, these types of gutter guards will allow water to pass through, while filtering out any type of debris that could get inside the gutter system. They are available for purchase for gutters of widths that vary between four and six inches. They are made with UV protection, which means they can stay under the sun’s powerful rays without suffering any damage. However, they will require changing in time, mostly because the product acts like a sponge and attracts moisture which can, in time, lead to the apparition of mold and bacteria.
Who Should Buy It: If you’re a fan of foam gutter guards, this product should find its way onto your shopping list. It’s an easy-to-install type of gutter guard but will require changing every few years.
Best Micro-Mesh Option
What We Like: A 20-year warranty is a pretty big deal, so is a product crafted with high-end materials; two features that are true to this guard. It is also nifty that there is more than one method for installation.
Here is the best micro-mesh option available for those of you looking for a sturdy brand for gutter guards. One of the many benefits brought by the Superior Gutter Guard is the multiple installation methods. You can either screw the gutters with the included self-tapping screws, or you can use the adhesive bond tape. Of course, you can use both methods simultaneously.
The fine surface made with micro-mesh can easily keep out the most common forms of debris and critters out of your gutters, prolonging their lifespan and leaving you with one less thing to worry about. With Superior Gutter Guard, you won’t have to worry about the tedious and dangerous job of cleaning your gutters so often. Your home will also have added protection against rodents and insects in addition to debris-clogged downspouts and overflowing gutters.
Who Should Buy It: The Superior Gutter Guard is a product that appeals to a wide range of customers. Because of its DIY-friendly nature, and easy-to-follow instructions, it’s a great product for people who like to get hands-on with things, but also for those who strongly feel like micro-mesh gutter guards are THE way to go.
Best Seamless Option
What We Like: These seamless and single-piece guards are more like high-end gutters with built-in protection than a mere protective layer. The lifetime warranty is also a lovely bonus. And, if installed properly, they don’t void your roof’s warranty either.
The only brand of gutter cover that is patented as a one-piece seamless gutter, LeafGuard provides coverage by having the guard integrated into the gutter rather than added on to existing gutters. This creates a seamless approach that helps keep anything from getting into warps and cracks that can occur with other types of guards. It also assures that, even in the heaviest rains, water is directed away from your home and roof.
Who Should Buy It: LeafGuard is for those who may already have damage to their gutters and need a complete replacement, which offers a complete guard to avoid future damage.
Gutter Guards FAQs
In addition to our top picks, here are a few of the most frequently asked questions about gutter guards.
Which gutter guards are best?
The best gutter guards for you and your home depends on several factors, the most significant being where you live, how much it rains and snows, how many trees you have, and the type of gutters already installed on your home. Many homeowners consider micro-mesh gutter guards as the best, in general, due to how well they filter even the smallest debris.
Do any gutter guards really work?
Yes, gutter guards really work. The thing is, no gutter guards prevent all debris or eliminate maintenance. You will still need to clean, or at least check on the interior of your gutters and wipe down your guards each year.
How hard are gutter guards to install?
Most gutter guards are relatively easy to install. However, there are a few types or brands that require professional installation. Many styles simply slide in or snap-in into your pre-existing gutters. Other needs to be screwed or clamped. It is important to note that some gutter types need to be anchored under the edge of your roof shingles, which can void your entire roof warranty.
How much do the best gutter guards cost?
The best gutter guards cost between several hundred and several thousand dollars. The best DIY guards can cost as little as $0.025 per foot, whereas the more expensive cost upwards of well over $5.00 per foot. These prices of course do not include professional installation fees.
How We Picked
As an ex semi-professional installer of gutter guards, it wasn’t so complicated to track down some of the very best products. Basically, anything I wouldn’t want to install on my home, customer’s home, or my grandmother’s home, I skipped right over. I gathered up some of the best-looking products from major retailers around the world and compared their types, quality of building materials, warranty options, effectiveness, and whether or not they void roof warranties during the installation process.
Next, I gathered additional intel on each of the items on my list, including pros, cons, customer ratings, complaints, and more. The reviews you read above are the only seven gutter guards that made the final cut That is how we picked, and why you know they are worthy of your consideration and investment.
Choosing the Right Gutter Guards for Your Home
Choosing the right gutter guard is a matter of spending time to find the product that offers the best balance between what you need from such a product vs. how much it can actually protect your gutters. We always like to think that the products we review are ultimately chosen as a matter of personal preference, but with gutter guards, it’s very important that they actually get the job done, leaving less room for subjectivism. Our pick for the best gutter guards for your home is LeafFilter. Not only do they fit the bill, with flying colors, because they are genuinely high-end and come with professional installation, but they also have a lifetime warranty to boot.
Not impressed with LeafFilter, or think they cost too much? Keep in mind that the best gutter guards for you are the ones that expand the lifespan of your gutters, manage to keep the most types of debris out of the system, and are also the ones that are easiest to install. The best choice should also be one that doesn’t require fiddling with the roof of your house, as you may void the warranty on some parts of the construction. There are tons of clip-on, snap-on, or simple screw-on types of systems out there, so pick something that’s sturdy and not complicated to set up.