10 Best Gutter Guards in 2023

10 Best Gutter Guards for 2023

Cleaning the gutters along the roof of a house is a messy chore, but it’s vital to keep this stormwater drainage system free of clogs. Decomposing leaves, twigs, pine needles, and other debris can create blockages in the gutter system, potentially causing damage to foundation plantings and the foundation itself.

Gutters keep water out of your home, but they can clog and stop working if you don’t regularly clean them. Homeowners who don’t want to constantly climb up a ladder to clean their gutters can invest in gutter guards. These products don’t eliminate the need for maintenance but significantly decrease how often you have to do it.

Fortunately, easy-to-install rain-gutter guards prevent debris from clogging up an existing gutter system. We tested a host of these products in different categories to judge performance on a variety of levels. Keep reading to learn more about leaf filter gutter protection and our hands-on-tested recommendations for some of the best leaf gutter guards on the market.Gutter guards are a vital component of any functioning gutter system. They keep debris and pests out of your gutters and downspouts, allowing rainwater to be effectively channeled away from your home. Installing one of these best gutter guards will reduce cleaning frequency for your gutters, prevent water damage to your fascia and roof, and protect the surrounding landscaping by extension.

10 Best Gutter Guards in 2023:Our choice

Best OverallRaptor Gutter Guard
Best BudgetGutter Guards for 5 Inch Gutters
Best ScreenA-M Aluminum Gutter Guard 5 inch
Best AluminumGutter Guard by Gutterglove
Best PlasticFlexxPoint 30 Year Gutter Cover System
Best SystemE-Z-GUTTER GUARD EZ-Quick-10 Gutter Guard
Best BrushSuperior Gutter Guards
Best FoamAmerimax Home Products
EASIEST TO INSTALLWaterlock Micromesh 5” Gutter Guards
BEST HEAVY-DUTYGutter Guard 3 Inch Expand Aluminum Filter Strainer

Cleaning the gutters along the roof of a house is a messy chore, but it’s vital to keep this stormwater drainage system free of clogs. Decomposing leaves, twigs, pine needles, and other debris can create blockages in the gutter system, potentially causing damage to foundation plantings and the foundation itself.

Fortunately, easy-to-install rain-gutter guards prevent debris from clogging up an existing gutter system. We tested a host of these products in different categories to judge performance on a variety of levels. Keep reading to learn more about gutter protection and our hands-on-tested recommendations for some of the best gutter guards on the market.

1.Raptor Gutter Guard

What We Like

  • Works with all gutters
  • Micro-mesh
  • Durable materials
  • Keeps out small and large particles

What We Don’t Like

  • Expensive

These gutter guards are made of high-quality stainless steel micro-mesh, which is durable, and effective at keeping out large and small debris. They are easy to install, and fit any type of gutter. Considering that you need to get a ladder and climb up to attach any gutter guard, knowing that it fits before bringing all of your materials up the ladder is a big load off your mind.

Also, if you use your gutters to collect rainwater for future use, these are the best gutter guards for you. The micro-mesh is fine enough to keep even small particles from contaminating your collected water. Not only do they keep out larger items, such as leaves and animals, but they also bar pine needles, dirt, and insects. A trough funnels even heavy rains through the gutter.

These are a bit pricey, around $2 per foot. The package holds 12 panels. But given that they work for so many situations and are durable, many people believe this is a good investment. If you are into gutter DIY and install them yourself, it can make them very affordable. Fortunately, the purchase includes self-tapping, corrosion-resistant screws and all the tools needed to install them.

2.Gutter Guards for 5 Inch Gutters

Product Specs

  • Style: Brush
  • Material: Nylon bristles
  • Visibility: No


  • Incredibly easy to install
  • Universal fit for multiple gutter types
  • Allows for plenty of water flow


  • Will clog eventually

This brush gutter guard has a flexible wire core made of stainless steel that can bend around corners. The brush bristles, made of UV-resistant polypropylene, extend out about 4.5 inches from the core, allowing the entire gutter guard to fit comfortably into standard-size (5-inch) gutters.

The gutter cover comes in a range of lengths from 6 to 120 feet, and it’s very easy to install without fasteners: Simply place the guard into the gutter and push down gently until the guard is sitting at the bottom of the gutter. The bristles allow water to flow freely through the gutter while preventing leaves, sticks, and other large debris from entering and clogging the drainage system.

In testing, the beauty of the GutterBrush’s gutter-guard system proved to be the easy installation, as described above. The system works for fascia-mounted brackets as well as shingle-mounted ones, making this the most universal of all gutter guards we tested. They allow for ample water flow, but we did find them prone to clogging with larger debris. While big pieces are easy to remove, we learned that the GutterBrush isn’t a maintenance-free solution.

3.A-M Aluminum Gutter Guard 5 inch


  • Affordable price
  • Easy to connect together


  • Screws aren’t included

Constructed of industrial grade 0.018 aluminum, these guards are extremely strong and won’t rust or corrode over time—plus they come with a lifetime warranty.

The guards are designed with 380 holes per foot, so they’ll perform well even in heavy rainstorms. You can install them on a wide range of gutter types too, including old-style spike and farrow gutters, so there’s a good chance they’ll be compatible with what you have. You’ll need to supply your own screws — make sure to buy 1/2-inch #8 zip screws — so keep that in mind.

4.Gutter Guard by Gutterglove

What We Like

  • Comes with all installation hardware
  • Micro-mesh
  • Comes in smaller panels

What We Don’t Like

  • Expensive

Leaves and pine needles are two of the most common nuisances that cause homeowners to look into gutter guards, and the Gutterglove is one of the best for these problems. They are also effective on dirt and grit from your shingles and even small insects.

Another micro-mesh gutter guard, this option from Gutterglove comes in smaller increments of 4 feet; if you only need smaller sections, this is a great option to keep costs down while still getting great protection from debris. For coverage around the entire house it can get more expensive, however.This is another easy-to-install option. You can use the included 3M tape to secure the gutter guard, although we recommend reinforcing it with the self-tapping screws.

5.FlexxPoint 30 Year Gutter Cover System


  • Very heavy duty construction withstands weather and abrasions
  • Super-secure installation system
  • Invisible from the ground


  • It can clog and require attention

The FlexxPoint Gutter Cover System offers enhanced protection from sagging and collapse, even under heavy leaf or snow accumulation. It’s reinforced with raised ridges that run the length of the strip, featuring a lightweight, rustproof aluminum build. The screen gutter guard has a subtle design that can’t be seen from the ground.

This reliable gutter guard attaches to the outer edge of the gutter with included screws. It snaps into place, so there’s no need to slip it under the shingles. It comes in black, white, brown, and matte and is available in 22- 102-, 125-, 200-, and 204-foot lengths.

Certain features of the FlexxPoint Gutter Cover System made it stand out in testing. It was the only system that required screws not only in the front of the gutter but also in the back. This makes it extremely heavy duty and stable—it won’t come out on its own under any condition. And while it’s very durable, it’s not difficult to cut. It can’t be seen from the ground, which is a huge plus for a heavy-duty guard. However, we found that it will collect larger debris, which must be manually (though easily) removed.

6.E-Z-GUTTER GUARD EZ-Quick-10 Gutter Guard


  • Low price
  • Easy to install
  • No screws needed


  • Wide holes can allow small debris to enter

This aluminum gutter guard is about as easy to install as it gets, and its low price makes it ideal for those on a tight budget. The raised profile reduces debris buildup on top too, unlike options that can flex downwards.Since its mesh pattern is more open than tighter designs, thin objects like pine needles may fit through, so it’s best used in areas without those trees. It’s also not as versatile as other options, and will only be able to fit 5-inch K-Style gutters.

7.Superior Gutter Guards

What We Like

  • Screen design funnels water
  • Micro-mesh
  • Comes with hardware for DIY installation

What We Don’t Like

  • Helpful to have extra screws
  • Ladder or boom adds to cost

The raised screen on these gutter guards draws rainwater into the gutter. The guards are micro-mesh and work to keep leaves, pine needles, dirt, and insects out of the gutter. The only thing getting through is water. While you likely can’t see the design or enjoy how it looks, you can be happy knowing that it is funneling the water where it needs to go.

These are designed for DIY installation. The purchase comes with self-tapping screws and a driver bit to get them installed quickly. (It can be helpful to have extra screws on hand, however.) If you use your ladder to install them, you avoid the expense of renting a boom.

8.Amerimax Home Products


  • Flexible installation options
  • Locking design works well
  • Easy to cut or adjust if needed


  • Installing around brackets can be difficult
  • Removing can be difficult

Even a novice DIYer may find it a snap to get their gutter guards installed with the Amerimax Home Products’ Lock-In Gutter Guard. This screen-type gutter guard is designed to slip under the first row of shingles and then snap over the outer edge of the gutter. Its flexible design accommodates 4-, 5-, and 6-inch gutter systems.

Made from powder-coated steel to resist rust, the Amerimax Home Products’ gutter guard will keep leaves and debris out while permitting even the heaviest downpour to flow through. It comes in easy-to-handle 3-foot strips and can be installed without tools.

The hardware-free installation performed very well in testing and was so secure, it proved a bit challenging to remove the gutter guard by hand. The screen was easy to cut, and we appreciated the flexible mounting option (we couldn’t get it under our shingles, so we put it across the top of the gutter). It did a good job of keeping debris out, though smaller bits made their way in. But the only real issue was with removing the guard, as the cut mesh hung up on the brackets.

9.Waterlock Micromesh 5” Gutter Guards


  • More than two dozen colors available
  • Very durable


  • Not as easy to install as other options
  • Very expensive

These guards are significantly more expensive than the other options on our list, but if you’re looking for a high-end product that’s built to last, they could be worth the price.

The guards designed to fit the majority of 5-inch residential and commercial gutters—including K-style and box types—and their micro-mesh cover ensures that only water will be able to pass through.

They’re available in 15 different colors too, making it easy to customize them to your home’s paint or roof color. Plus, the included zip-screws are color-matched for a progressional-quality look.

10.Gutter Guard 3 Inch Expand Aluminum Filter Strainer


  • Easy to install
  • Low price
  • Heavy-duty aluminum construction


  • Only prevent downspout clogs

Designed to fit directly onto the downspout of your filter, these Massca guards are ideal for those who don’t want to hassle with complex installation of full-length guards. They’re simple to mount yourself and don’t require any screws or fasteners, so no need to lug a power drill up the ladder.

With a weatherproof, non-corrosive aluminum construction, they’re durable enough to last a long time. If you’re not satisfied, the 30-day money-back guarantee will have you covered. These can also be placed in the bottom of the downspout to prevent rodents and other small animals from nesting.

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Gutter Guards

There are a few more things to keep in mind beyond the best type of gutter guards to protect a home. These include material, size, visibility, and installation.

Types of Gutter Guards

The five main types of gutter guards available are screen, micro mesh, reverse curve (or surface-tension gutter guards), brush, and foam. Each type has its own set of advantages and considerations.


Screen guards feature a wire or a plastic grid that blocks leaves from entering the gutter trough. They’re easy to install by lifting the bottom row of roof shingles and sliding the edges of the gutter screens beneath the shingles along the entire length of the gutter; the weight of the shingles holds the screen in place. Screen gutter guards are an inexpensive option and offer the simplest installation—often, no tools are needed.

Gutter screens are not screwed down and so may be dislodged by high winds or knocked out from under shingles by falling branches. Additionally, prying up the lower row of roof shingles to install slip-under gutter guards voids certain roof warranties. Buyers might want to contact the shingle manufacturer before installing this type of gutter guard if they have concerns.

Micro Mesh

Steel micro-mesh gutter guards are similar to screens, allowing water to run through small holes while blocking twigs, pine needles, and debris. They require one of three simple installation methods: slipping the edge under the first row of roof shingles, snapping the guard directly onto the top of the gutter, or attaching a flange to the fascia (the vertical strip just above the top of the gutter).

Micro-mesh gutter guards are effective at blocking even small bits of debris, such as blowing sand, while allowing rain to flow through. They’re made of various materials, from inexpensive plastic gutter guards to strong stainless steel ones. Unlike other gutter guards, even the best mesh gutter guards may require occasional cleaning with a hose sprayer and scrub brush to clear ultrafine debris from the mesh holes.

Reverse Curve

Reverse-curve gutter guards are made from lightweight metal or molded plastic. Water flows over the top and around a downward curve before dropping into the gutter beneath. Leaves and debris slide right off the edge and fall to the ground below. These gutter guards work well for keeping leaves and debris out of the gutter, even in yards with numerous trees.

Reverse-curve gutter guards are more expensive than mesh guards and screen options. They’re less DIY-friendly than other types of gutter guards and must attach at the correct angle to the roof’s fascia. If not installed properly, water can run over the edge rather than following the reverse curve into the gutter. Since they install above the existing guttering, these guards can appear like full gutter covers from the ground, so it’s advised to look for a product that matches the color and aesthetic of the home.


Brush-style gutter guards are essentially oversize pipe cleaners that rest inside the gutter, preventing large debris from falling into the gutter and causing clogs. Simply cut the brush to the proper length and slide it into the gutter. The easy installation and inexpensive price make brush-style gutter guards a popular option for DIYers on a budget.

This type of gutter guard is typically composed of a thick metal wire core with polypropylene bristles extending from the center. The guards require no screws or connections to the rain gutters, and the metal wire core is flexible, allowing the gutter guards to be bent to fit around corners or unusually shaped stormwater drainage systems. These features make it easier for DIYers to install these gutter guards without professional assistance.


Another easy-to-use option is essentially a triangular block of foam that sits in the gutter. One flat side lies to the back of the gutter; another flat side faces up to the top of the gutter to prevent debris from entering. The third flat side lies diagonally in the gutter, which allows water and small debris to flow through the drainage system.

Foam gutter guards are inexpensive and easy to install, making them a great choice for DIYers. Gutter foam can be cut to the proper length, and the guards don’t require nails or screws to remain in place, so there’s less risk of damage or leaks. However, they aren’t the best for locations that experience high levels of precipitation because heavy rain can quickly saturate the foam, causing the gutters to overflow.


Gutter-guard materials can vary depending on the type and quality of the product.Stainless steel is commonly used to make micro-mesh, screen, and reverse-curve gutter guards. It’s one of the most durable options, though typically more expensive. Stainless steel is resistant to rust, corrosion, and temperature extremes, preventing the gutter guards from expanding, warping, and cracking.

Copper screen and micro-mesh gutter guards are highly resistant to rusting and corrosion. Typically more resilient (and more expensive) than any other type, copper gutter guards can also be hard to find, as few manufacturers produce them.

Aluminum, a comparatively affordable metal, is used to make lightweight micro-mesh and screen gutter guards. Though they’re not as rugged as stainless steel or copper options, durability isn’t as important for homes that don’t have overhanging tree branches because there’s less chance for branches, twigs, pine needles, and other hard objects to pierce the guard.

Plastics are regularly used to make the frame of gutter guards for both reverse-curve and brush guards. However, brush guards typically have a core of stainless steel or aluminum, while the brush bristles are usually made from polypropylene. Plastic is inexpensive, and it doesn’t rust or corrode, but it is prone to swelling and cracking.

Foam is the only material used in foam gutter guards. The entire guard is essentially a block of foam that allows water to filter through the materials while preventing large debris from falling into the gutter. Foam is an inexpensive, durable material, but it is susceptible to mold growth.


Choosing the correct size when the time comes to install gutter guards requires climbing up on a secured ladder to measure the width of the gutter. The length of each gutter must also be measured to determine the correct size as well as the number of gutter guards necessary to protect the entire gutter system.

Most gutter guards come in lengths ranging from 3 to 8 feet. Gutters come in three standard widths, with guards sized to match 4 inches, 5 inches, and 6 inches, with 5 inches being most common. To get the correct-size guard, measure the width of the top of the gutter from the inside edge to the outside edge.


Depending on the type of gutter guard that is used, the side or even the top may be visible from the ground, so it’s best to find a guard that highlights the house or blends in with the existing aesthetic. Foam and brush gutter guards are essentially invisible from the ground because they sit completely in the gutter, but micro-mesh, screen, and reverse-curve gutter guards are more visible.

Generally, guards come in three standard colors: white, black, and silver. Some products are available in additional color options, allowing users to find guards that match the gutters. Matching the gutter guards to the color of the roof is also a good way to obtain a cohesive, attractive look.

Professional vs. DIY Installation

Professional installation is strongly recommended for anything higher than a first-story roof. With 1-story houses, this is a relatively safe and simple job that requires only basic tools.

Avid DIYers equipped with an appropriate ladder who are experienced working at heights should be able to install their own gutter guards on a 2-story house as long as safety precautions are followed. Never go up on a ladder to the roof without a spotter. Ensure that a proper fall-safety system is in place to prevent serious injuries.

Types of Gutter Guards

There are many different types of gutter guards, from DIY brush guards to professionally installed micro-mesh. Here’s a breakdown of each kind and their pros and cons.


Screen gutter guards have large holes that keep out leaves and other debris. You can install them by lifting the bottom row of roof shingles and sliding the edge of the screen underneath it. Screen gutter guards are affordable and easy to install on your own, but they can blow off in windy conditions and become brittle over time.

Gutter screens also have larger holes than mesh or micro-mesh options, meaning they won’t stop finer debris from entering your gutters. Consider the types of trees in your yard before committing to this design.


Mesh guards are typically made of metal or plastic and have small holes that filter water while blocking debris. You can slip them under the bottom row of your roof shingles, snap them directly on top of your gutters, or attach them to the fascia—the “transition trim” between your home and your roof.

These gutter guards are slightly more expensive and more difficult to install than screen guards, especially if they install under your shingles. Lifting shingles, especially when it’s cold, can damage your roof or void its warranty. Additionally, some mesh gutter guard varieties are flimsy, and extreme weather conditions can easily tear or damage them.


Micro-mesh gutter guards are similar to mesh guards. They have small holes that keep out debris and allow water to flow through them. However, the holes on micro-mesh guards are much smaller than those on regular mesh guards, allowing them to keep out even small debris.

While some DIY micro-mesh gutter guards exist today, most options must be professionally installed. This is a costlier solution to gutter protection but is more effective, lasts longer, and requires less maintenance.

The Advantages of Owning Gutter Guards

The main benefit of using gutter guards to protect the stormwater drainage system is keeping debris out. Leaves, sticks, feathers, and other large debris can quickly clog up a gutter system, preventing water from properly draining. Once formed, these clogs grow as mud clings to the clog, filling in gaps and potentially attracting pests.

Rodents and insects that are drawn to wet, dirty gutters can make nests or use the proximity to the home to begin burrowing into the roof and walls. However, installing gutter guards helps keep out these nuisance pests and protect the home.

With gutter guards preventing debris buildup and pest infestations, the gutters remain relatively clean, so they only need to be thoroughly washed out once every few years, saving time and effort. The gutter guards should still be inspected semi-regularly to clean away any debris from the top of the guard that could be limiting the flow of water into the gutters.

  • By using gutter guards, the gutter system remains free of such large debris as leaves and sticks.
  • Gutter guards help keep rodents and larger insects from nesting in damp gutters, thereby causing the drainage system to back up.
  • The maintenance of gutters is easier when gutter guards are used to prevent obstructions from entering the stormwater drainage system.

Advantages of Gutter Guards

Not all homeowners agree on the benefits of gutter guards, and much of the debate can be attributed to misinformation. Whether you install a mesh gutter guard, a basic screen, or a reverse-curve design, clogged gutters can still happen with neglected maintenance. However, as long as you don’t fall for claims that you’ll never have to climb a ladder again, you can benefit from reduced maintenance costs and effort.

Gutter guards significantly reduce gutter cleaning frequency by blocking pests and debris while allowing water to flow through. This effectively prevents your gutters from clogging and you from having to clean them twice per year.

They’re also a great way to protect your home from damage. When your gutters remain free and clear, they direct water safely away from your house and avoid water damage to your basement and foundation. Water won’t back up and rot your fascia or damage your roof, either. Even when dry, leaves and debris that accumulate in your gutters pose a fire hazard to your home and its inhabitants.

The advantages of gutter guards make them a smart choice for most homeowners. However, no product is perfect. While they make cleanings easier and less frequent, they do not eliminate gutter cleaning entirely. Debris can accumulate on top of the gutter guard and require you to brush it away.

How We Tested the Best Gutter Guards

We wanted to suggest only the best gutter guards available, so our hands-on testers installed, considered performance, and removed each product to ensure we knew exactly how each worked.First, we installed one section of each gutter guard according to the directions, cutting for brackets when necessary. We assessed the flexibility of installation (no two sets of gutters are the same) as well as the quality of the hardware and how difficult each was to install. In most cases, professional installation is not required and can be done by the average DIYer. We observed the gutter guards from the ground to determine visibility.

We then left the gutter guards to collect debris, but since things had been relatively calm in our area at that time and there wasn’t a lot of debris coming down naturally, we took matters into our own hands. We used mulch to simulate twigs, tree dirt, and other debris, scooping it onto the roof above the gutters. Then, after hosing the roof down, we could accurately assess how well the gutters caught the debris.We removed the gutter guards to access the gutters and determine how well the guards kept out debris. Finally, we cleaned these leaf guards for gutters to evaluate how easy it was to remove any clinging debris.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do gutter guards go under shingles?

Installation methods depend on the type of gutter guard, but some products do install under the first or second row of shingles.[1]Should Gutter Guards Be Installed Under Shingles?

Do gutter guards work in heavy rain?

Handling heavy rain is entirely possible for most gutter guards, though guards that are full of leaves or sticks may have a hard time passing the quickly flowing water. This is why it’s important to inspect and clean both the gutters and the guards in spring and fall seasons when falling debris from nearby foliage is at its worst.[2]Home Protection Guide: Do Gutter Guards Work in Heavy Rain?

Do gutter guards cause ice dams?

Some gutter guards, like reverse-curve guards, can worsen ice dams by trapping snow and ice inside the gutter. However, most gutter guards help prevent ice buildup by limiting the amount of snow that passes through into the gutter system.[3]Do Gutter Guards Cause Ice Dams?

What are gutter guards made of?

The three most common gutter guard materials are aluminum, metal or nylon mesh, and plastic. Aluminum and mesh gutter guards last longer than plastic, but aluminum is lightweight and prone to movement in the wind, while mesh requires more maintenance. Plastic gutter guards are usually more affordable than the other two materials but not as durable.[4]What Is Your Gutter Cover Made From?

Are gutter guards worth the money?

Gutter guards are worth the money if you want to reduce how often you clean your gutters. Over time, your gutters will naturally experience clogs from pine needles, tree branches, leaves, and other debris. You could experience the following problems if you don’t have a gutter guard or don’t clean your gutters regularly: Roof leaks when the water doesn’t drain properly, an insect infestation in the moist debris found in your gutters or foundation damage from water collection.

While gutter guards still require occasional maintenance, they don’t have to be cleaned as much as unprotected gutters, which makes them a good solution for someone who doesn’t want to climb a ladder to clean out their gutters a few times every year.[5]Are Gutter Guards Worth It?

How do gutter guards work?

Gutter guards prevent debris buildup as water flows down your roof, over the guards, and drains. Different gutter guards function differently depending on their design.

Can you install gutter guards yourself?

Many gutter guards are designed to be installed by homeowners, and some can even be installed without tools. These gutter guards are often intended to slip under the bottom of shingles on your roof, then snap onto the front of your gutters.[6]Can I Install Gutter Guards By Myself?

What length and number of gutter guards do you need?

When purchasing gutter guards for the first time, choose a single panel to ensure the product fits properly. Once you’ve determined the guards fit, measure the exterior walls of your house to estimate the necessary lengths of the guards. From here, take the total distance and divide it by the length of each gutter guard.

Should you keep gutter guards up year-round?

Many people leave gutter guards on their homes year-round, especially if the panels are installed with screws. However, guards can cause issues if your home is prone to ice dams. In this case, consider temporary guards that are easy to remove in winter.

Is there a gutter guard that really works?

The short answer is yes, gutter guards work. While they can’t guarantee that you’ll never have clogged gutters again, they can significantly reduce the number of times you need to clean your gutters and lower the risk of damage to your home and property due to clogged gutters and sitting water.

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