Ashburn, VA

How Much Do Leaf Filters or Gutter Guards Cost to Install?

$4 – $12 Per Foot Installed (DIY $1 – $3)
$570 – $1,529 Total Installed

Gutter guards cost between $4 and $12 per foot installed. For an average home with 150 to 200 feet of gutters, homeowners spend $570 to $1,529 for professional gutter guard installation. Name brand gutter guard systems like Leaf Filter, LeafGuard, and Gutter Helmet run $12 to $35 per foot installed. Get free estimates from gutter guard installers near you or view our cost guide below.

Cost to Install Gutter Guards

Gutter guards cost $0.25 to $6.00 per foot for only the materials. If you purchase your own gutter covers, hiring a handyman to install them costs $1.85 to $3.75 per foot. When hiring a full-service gutter guard company to install complex leaf guards, expect to spend $7.50 to $12.00 per foot.

Average Cost of Gutter Guards Chart

Gutter Guard Cost
National Average Cost $1,133
Minimum Cost $132
Maximum Cost $4,800
Average Range $570 to $1,529

Most water problems stem from ineffective gutters and downspouts, which can cause damage to your home’s foundation. Installing gutter guards is worth it to keep falling debris and leaves out of your gutters and reduce your need to clean them out by up to 66%.

Low-cost DIY covers are available at $1 to $3 per foot, but the higher-end gutter guards are the most effective and come with professional installation.

Cost To Install Gutter Guards By Type Chart

Cost To Install Gutter Guards
Type Average Cost To Install
Plastic Screen $570 – $760
Vinyl Grid $574 – $765
Aluminum Perforated $596 – $794
Steel Screen $663 – $884
Metal Mesh Screens $663 – $884
Solid-Surface (Helmets) $738 – $984
Micro-Mesh Screens $812 – $1,083
Full Surface Tension Covers $935 – $1,246
Foam Inserts $1,038 – $1,384
Gutter Brushes $1,147 – $1,529

*Table based on an average home with 150 to 200 feet of gutters.

Table of Contents

  1. Cost to Install Gutter Guards
  2. Gutter Guard Costs Per Foot
  3. Best Gutter Guards By Brand
  4. Cost Factors To Install Gutter Covers
  5. Gutter Protection System Accessories
  6. Seamless Gutters with Leaf Guard
  7. Are Gutter Guards Worth It?
  8. DIY Gutter Guards
  9. Free Gutter Guard Estimates
  10. Gutter Installation Near Me

Gutter guards cost between $0.25 and $6.00 per foot depending on the type of material—mesh, micro-mesh, foam, solid, reverse curve, or brush being the main choices. Each style has a different level of effectiveness, and typically the more expensive covers are the most effective.

Gutter Guard Cost Per Foot Chart

Gutter Guard Cost Per Foot
Type Cost Per Foot
Plastic PVC Screens $0.25 – $1.50
Aluminum Perforated $0.50 – $1.25
Vinyl Grid $0.50 – $1.30
Solid-Surface (Helmets) $1.00 – $3.00
Steel Screens $1.50 – $3.00
Metal Mesh Screens $1.50 – $3.00
Micro-Mesh Screens $2.00 – $4.00
Foam Inserts $2.00 – $6.00
Full Surface Tension Covers $3.30 – $6.00
Gutter Brushes $3.70 – $5.75

To calculate the linear feet of your gutters, measure the perimeter of your roofline.

The best gutter guards will manage to keep out roof debris, handle any amount of rainfall, not damage the roof during installation, and be an excellent long-term investment. Let's go over each type in detail.

Get free quotes from Gutter pros near you. View pros

Plastic PVC Screen Gutter Guards

Plastic PVC screens or vinyl grids are the cheapest at $0.25 to $1.50 per foot, but are also the lowest quality. The flexible plastic guards lay above the gutters or are tucked under the drip edge without any fasteners. Theses screens can be cut to any size and come in widths of 5” to 7” with lengths ranging from 15’ to 30’.

Plastic PVC Screen Pros & Cons
Pros Cons
  • Easy to DIY install; snaps into place
  • Inexpensive
  • Doesn’t rust
  • Easy to cut
  • Not designed for a long life
  • The spiky pieces trap leaves and debris causing the problem of clogs that you’re trying to get rid of.
  • Can blow out of the gutter during heavy wind storms
  • Can bend and warp in the heat, and UV light can damage them.
  • The ice and snow in northern climates tend to collapse them.
  • Best for – Both needles and leaves.
  • Durability – May need replacement after 3 to 6 years based on climate.

Flat Plastic PVC Screen Gutter Guards Installed

Full Surface Tension Covers & Gutter Helmets

Full surface tension covers and gutter helmets cost between $3.30 and $6.00 per foot. These guards are made from a solid piece of metal that covers the entire gutter. An engineered outside edge curves downward between the guard and the gutter. Water flows around the curve through surface tension and gets drained away, whereas most debris will glide right over the edge.

Small debris and seeds will slowly accumulate within the gap between the helmet and the front lip of the gutter, which requires occasional gutter cleaning. Also, heavy rain can skip right over the helmet, especially with a steep roof pitch, and fall straight to the ground causing damage.

Full Surface Tension Covers Pros & Cons
Pros Cons
  • Works well with leaves and other large debris
  • Prevents anything from falling into the gutters
  • Lets water flow unobstructed
  • Expensive – brand names usually costing $20 – $30 installed
  • Can have a hard time handling a severe rainfall, so water overshoots the gutters.
  • May not work on steel, tile, slate, or wood roofs.
  • Best for – Must be installed in a similar angle as the roof and works best with roofs with a mild or moderate slope.
  • Durability – Lasts 10 to 20 years with some top brands offering a lifetime warranty.

Perforated Aluminum Covers

Perforated aluminum gutter covers cost $0.50 to $1.25 per foot and come in 4’ to 8’ pieces. The perforations allow for easily installing fasteners to the fascia. Aluminum guards provide the best value, lasting 10 to 20 years, are fairly priced, and come highly recommend from professional installers.

Perforated Aluminum Covers Pros & Cons
Pros Cons
  • Available and inexpensive
  • Covers are easy to remove and clean.
  • Stronger and more durable than plastic screens
  • Don’t become brittle, warp, rust, or bend
  • Available in many colors
  • Leaves lie on top of the covers.
  • The large holes allow small particles into the gutter.
  • Prone to dents
  • Best for – Works in all climates and debris types.
  • Durability – Last between 10 and 20 years. Some companies offer a limited lifetime warranty.

Steel Screens

Steel screens for gutter protection cost $1.50 to $3.00 per foot and are more durable than PVC of aluminum. These screens come in 5” to 7” widths with pre-cut pieces 4’ to 10’ long. Avoid tucking these screens under the first layer of shingles. Tucking any guard may void your shingle warranty and exposes the roof decking to heavy rain.

Steel Screens Pros & Cons
Pros Cons
  • Inexpensive
  • Available in short sections (easy to handle)
  • Easy to install by clipping on to the outer lip of the gutter
  • The mesh size is large enough to catch small debris.
  • Not good under trees
  • Best for – Works with various types of roof: steel, slate, wood, tile, or shingles. Also works with old, brittle shingles.
  • Durability – Last 5 to 10 years before rusting on average. If powder-coated, expect an additional 5 to 10 years of longevity. Some high-end brands offer a limited lifetime warranty.

Steel Mesh Screen Gutter Cover Blocking Leaves

Metal Mesh Screens

Metal mesh gutter guards cost $1.50 to $3.00 per foot and come in stainless steel or aluminum. Similar to helmets, metal mesh screens keep out most debris but has trouble with small seeds slipping through and heavy rainfall skipping over the mesh.

Metal Mesh Screens Pros & Cons
Pros Cons
  • The small mesh keeps out almost all debris.
  • Some come with self-locking clips for easy installation.
  • The small mesh can keep out heavier rainfall.
  • Not small enough, as some debris still gets in.
  • During testing, some parts collapsed.
  • Ice and snow can collect on the top, causing ice dams and too much weight on the gutter.
  • Best for – Works with various types of roof: steel, slate, wood, tile, or shingles. Also works with old, brittle shingles.
  • Durability – Last 5 to 10 years depending on if the metal is powder-coated.

Curved Metal Mesh Gutter Guard With powder-coated protection

Micro Mesh Gutter Guards

Micro-screen covers are one of the most effective guards against debris and cost $2 to $3 per linear foot on average. These screens are typically made from a metal frame that's covered by a fine wire mesh, then powder-coated for protection. Some brands will require professional installation.

Micro Mesh Pros & Cons
Pros Cons
  • Keeps out almost every single thing—to the size of sand particles
  • Copper in certain micro-mesh products helps break down moss, algae, and lichen.
  • Not suitable for DIY
  • Holes are so small that water skates across the top unless they have touchpoints underneath.
  • Tiny granules, decaying leaves, roof asphalt, moss, and tree sap still clog this micro-mesh.
  • Icicles can form on the screens in winter.
  • Best for – Houses sitting under pine trees. Warmer climates. Works with various types of roof: steel, slate, wood, tile, or shingles. Also works with old, brittle shingles.
  • Durability – Will last 5 to 10 years depending on the material. Tend to become damaged/dented over time.

Foam Inserts Gutter Guards

Foam inserts gutter guards cost $2 to $6 per foot. The foam wedges are typically made from polyurethane which are 5” wide and 8’ long. The foam allows water to filter through while preventing debris and leaves from entering the gutter system.

Foam Gutter Guards Pros & Cons
Pros Cons
  • Durable and long-lasting
  • Can handle direct sunlight without drying or falling apart
  • Include a germicide to discourage bacterial growth
  • Lightweight
  • Easy to install or remove. Can be cut to fit easily
  • Allows a smooth flow of water around them
  • Stops mosquitoes breeding in gutters
  • Invisible from the ground
  • Doesn’t keep out debris, so gutters still need to be cleaned
  • Can freeze in cold weather, disrupting water flow
  • Foam could encourage moss growth.
  • More expensive than many other options
  • Best for – Mild to moderate climates.
  • Durability – Lasts 2 to 5 years in sunny and wet climates and up to 10 years in temperate climates. Some brands include a limited 20 to 25-year warranty.

Gutter Brushes Cost

Gutter brushes cost $3.70 to $5.75 per foot on average. The guards are built from twisted wire or a steel rod with bristles designed to allow water to pass while blocking debris from entering. Gutter brushes will need to be removed and cleaned periodically, and professional installers do not recommended them.

Gutter Brushes Pros & Cons
Pros Cons
  • Cheap
  • Easy to install
  • Allow good water flow
  • Don’t add weight to gutters
  • Keep out birds and rodents
  • The brushes don’t allow all debris to be removed
  • Can restrict water flow when clogged with leaves
  • Brushes have to be removed and shaken of debris regularly
  • Not a long-term solution
  • Best for – Mild to moderate climates.
  • Durability – Designed to last 5 years, with proper care.

Gutter Brushes Installed In Aluminum Gutter System

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Best Gutter Guards By Brand

The best gutter guards are Leaf Filter, LeafGuard, and Gutter Helmet—they are the most expensive, but also the most effective. Choosing the best leaf guards for gutter protection depends on your roof, location, climate, and the amount of debris, rainfall, snow, and freezing temps that occur.

Best Gutter Guards Price Comparison
Brand Type Materials Cost Per Foot Installed Cost Per Foot
EasyOn Micro-mesh $1.99 – $2.91 $4.91 – $5.83
Gutterglove Micro screen $2.31 $5.23
Leaf Relief Perforated $2.75 $5.67
Raindrop Perforated $2.85 $5.77
Englert Microguard Micro-mesh $4.00 $6 – $7
LeafGuard One-piece gutter system $8.90 – $32.79 $11.82 – $35.71
Rhino Micro-mesh $12 – $17 $15 – $20
Gutter Helmet Covered $14.49 $17.41
Leaf Filter Mesh $15 – $39 $18 – $42
Mastershield Micro-mesh $17 $20
Valor Mesh Estimate on request
K-Guard One-piece gutter system Estimate on request
Bulldog Perforated Estimate on request

Leaf Filter Cost

Leaf Filter gutter guards cost $17 to $43 per foot on average for materials and installation. Leaf Filter gutter protection for a home with 150 to 200 linear feet of gutters costs $2,650 to $6,300 for professional installation.

Leaf Filter Cost
Item Cost Per Foot Subtotal Cost
Materials $15 – $39 $2,350 – $5,500
Labor $2 – $4 $300 – $800
Total Cost $17 – $43 $2,650 – $6,300

Leaf Filter has a surgical-grade steel mesh of 275μ over a uPVC frame that is scientifically designed to keep everything out of your gutters except water. The vinyl will expand and contract in hot and cool weather, so it can warp over time, even if it’s screwed in place.

They are not installed under the roof shingle but have a built-in 11-degree pitch to help debris fall off. Leaf Filter guards can only be installed by a professional.

LeafGuard Cost

LeafGuard gutters cost $11 to $37 per foot on average for materials and installation. A Beldon LeafGuard gutter system for a home with 150 to 200 linear feet of gutters costs $2,150 to $7,400 for professional installation.

Leaf Guard Cost
Item Cost Per Foot Subtotal Cost
Materials $9 – $33 $1,350 – $6,600
Labor $2 – $4 $300 – $800
Total Cost $11 – $37 $2,150 – $7,400

Beldon LeafGuard is a one-piece gutter system that's 20% thicker than the industry standard. Leaf Guard is designed to hold large amounts of water and boasts complete elimination of debris. It’s available in different shades of white, tan, gray, and red.

Leaf Filter vs. Leaf Guard
Comparison Leaf Filter LeafGuard
Materials Steel and Vinyl Aluminum
Method Micro-mesh Filter Reverse Curve
Installation Snap-on Complete Gutter System
Installed Cost (LF) $17 – $43 $11 – $37
Rating 4.9/5 4.8/5

Gutter Helmet Cost

Gutter Helmet costs $16.50 to $18.50 per foot on average for materials and installation. A Gutter Helmet system for a home with 150 to 200 linear feet of gutters costs $2,475 to $3,700 for professional installation.

Gutter Helmet Cost
Item Cost Per Foot Subtotal Cost
Materials $14.50 $2,175 – $2,900
Labor $2 – $4 $300 – $800
Total Cost $16.50 – $18.50 $2,475 – $3,700

Gutter Helmet has a triple lifetime warranty on their products, one of them being a no-clog performance warranty. With its nose-forward design and ribbed surface, it’s good at handling large amounts of water and snow.

Gutter Helmet vs. Leaf Guard
Comparison Gutter Helmet LeafGuard
Materials Aluminum Aluminum
Method Reverse Curve Reverse Curve
Installation With Brackets Complete Gutter System
Installed Cost (LF) $16.50 – $18.50 $11 – $37
Rating 4.8/5 4.8/5

Valor Gutter Guard Pricing

Valor gutter guards are made of stainless steel micro-mesh crimped to a galvanized steel frame. Pricing is available upon request. Water goes through the mesh and then through louvered steel into the gutters. They capture all the water flowing into the gutter due to the elevated S bends in the mesh, which forces the water to slow down and change direction. They also prevent debris from entering them and are pitched to the angle of the roof.

Rhino Gutter Guard Cost Per Foot

Rhino gutter guards cost $14 to $21 per foot on average for materials and installation. A Rhino gutter system for a home with 150 to 200 linear feet of gutters costs $2,100 to $4,200 for professional installation.

Rhino Gutter Guard Cost
Item Cost Per Foot Subtotal Cost
Materials $12 – $17 $2,175 – $2,900
Labor $2 – $4 $300 – $800
Total Cost $14 – $21 $2,100 – $4,200

Rhino makes surgical stainless steel micro-mesh gutter guards that can handle 60 gallons per minute of water volume. They also sell miters that can catch increased water streams from various roof spots and distribute it more evenly into the gutter system.

Rhino guards don’t go under the shingle, but they can only be installed by trained professionals. Their guard carries a 20-year no-clog warranty and works best with shallow-sloped roofs.

Consult with a Gutter pro on the best brands. View pros

Leaf Relief Cost

Leaf Relief installation costs $4.75 to $6.75 per foot on average, including materials. A Leaf Relief system for a home with 150 to 200 linear feet of gutters costs $700 to $1,350 for professional installation.

Leaf Relief Cost
Item Cost Per Foot Subtotal Cost
Materials $2.75 $400 – $550
Labor $2 – $4 $300 – $800
Total Cost $4.75 – $6.75 $700 – $1,350

Leaf Relief guards are made from heavy-duty aluminum or copper and are attached to the gutter only. The guard is flat and perforated and can drain 29.7” of rainfall per hour. It has a vinyl flap, and it’s treated to resist UV light and extreme weather. There are four options within the Leaf Relief category—adjustable, classic, half-round, and zip.

Mastershield Gutter Guard Cost

Mastershield gutter guards cost $19 to $21 per foot on average for materials and installation. A Mastershield gutter system for a home with 150 to 200 linear feet of gutters costs $2,850 to $3,350 for professional installation.

Mastershield Gutter Guard Cost
Item Cost Per Foot Subtotal Cost
Materials $17 $2,550
Labor $2 – $4 $300 – $800
Total Cost $19 – $21 $2,850 – $3,350

Mastershield gutter guards are made from a stainless steel micro-mesh that is interwoven with copper wire, and it keeps out all debris larger than 50μ. Under the mesh is steel with multiple touchpoints to draw in the water. The wire keeps oils and organisms off the gutters and guards.

The MasterShield system must be installed professionally, and needs to be installed at the right angle to achieve what is promised, which often requires that the existing gutters be lowered to accommodate the installation. The cost can occasionally go up to $28 per linear foot if the root slope is extreme or if the house has multiple stories.

K-Guard Gutter Cost

K-Guard will give price estimates on request. K-Guard has been called the most attractive gutter system available. They integrate the gutter with the cover to form a seamless, all-in-one system which is screwed to the fascia board and rafter tails. The system can withstand virtually any weather condition and can handle 22 inches of rain per hour.

Gutterglove Cost Per Foot

Gutterglove costs $3 to $8 per foot for materials and installation. Homeowners choosing the Gutterglove Pro report spending $2,000 to $3,600 on having it installed professionally.

Gutterglove Cost
Item Cost Per Foot Subtotal Cost
Materials $0.92 – $3.76 $150 – $750
Labor $2 – $4 $300 – $800
Total Cost $2.92 – $7.76 $450 – $1,550

The Gutterglove micro screen is the toughest money can buy—tough enough to be used by the Navy and popular with rain harvesters due to its UL certification. Made with an anodized steel frame, they have four main categories for the guards—Pro, Ultra, LeafBlaster, and LeafBlaster PRO.

Raindrop Gutter Guards Cost

Raindrop gutter guards are made from a polypropylene blend combined with UV stabilizers. This blend stands up to the fiercest storms and very hot and cold climates. Raindrop has a system of guards, end caps, miters, wide mouth outlets, downspout clean-outs, heat cables, and rain barrels available.

Raindrop Gutter Guards Cost
Item Cost Per Foot Subtotal Cost
Materials $2.85 $450
Labor $2 – $4 $300 – $800
Total Cost $4.85 – $6.85 $750 – $1,250

EasyOn Gutter Guard Prices

EasyOn is a stainless steel filtration system using micro-mesh that’s made by Gutterglove. It will filter out leaves, pine needles, and even sand. It installs 30% faster than other brands and can be taped or screwed on to any gutter. It works with any roof type.

EasyOn Gutter Guard Prices
Item Cost Per Foot Subtotal Cost
Materials $1.99 – $2.91 $300 – $600
Labor $2 – $4 $300 – $800
Total Cost $3.99 – $6.91 $600 – $1,400

Other Top Leaf Guard Gutters & Costs

Other Top Leaf Guards Gutters & Costs
Brand Type Materials Cost Per Foot Installed Cost Per Foot
Amerimax Plastic Perforated $0.50 $3.42
Ultimate Covered $0.77 $3.69
ShurFlo Perforated $1.24 $4.16
Sureguard Aluminum Perforated $1.36 $4.28
Leafproof Covered $4.15 $7.07
Proguard Covered Mesh $4.50 $7.42
Gutter Pro Covered $6.03 $8.95
LeaFree Covered $10.00 $12.92
Leafx Covered $13.08 $16.00
Xtreme Mesh $14.58 $17.50
Waterloov Covered $17.08 $20.00
Gutter Topper Covered
Heated Cover
$20.08 $23.00
Byers Covered $53.08 $56.00
Champion Mesh Estimate on request
Gutter Cap Covered Estimate on request
Gutter Shutter Covered Estimate on request
Springrock Perforated
Estimate on request

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Cost Factors To Install Gutter Covers

Labor Costs

The average labor cost to install gutter covers is $3 per foot with most homeowners spending $1.85 to $3.75 per foot. An average-sized home uses 150 feet of gutter guards which takes a professional about 3 hours to install and costs about $450.

Labor Costs To Install Leaf Filters
Length Labor Time Average Cost
50 FT 1 Hour $150
100 FT 2 Hours $300
150 FT 3 Hours $450
200 FT 4 Hours $600

A professional will most likely have a connection with a particular rain gutter manufacturer and will be trained for the best methods of installing their products.

Get free estimates from gutter professionals. View pros

Gutter Materials: Aluminum vs. Steel

The most common types of gutter guards to install are aluminum and galvanized steel. Aluminum is the go-to choice among most contractors based on their price and durability.

Aluminum vs. Steel Gutter Guards
Aluminum Steel
Weigh almost 2/3 less than steel gutter guards. Once they are full of water or snow and ice, the weight could pull them off the house.
Dent easily Harder and resistant to dings
Conduct heat better Stronger
Easier to cut during installation Harder to cut

Snap-On vs. Screw-On Gutter Guards

Different cover types may require a more complicated installation process which increases the price. Both snap-on and screw-on gutter guards have their benefits and disadvantages.

  • Snap-on gutter guards are easy to install and remove.
  • Screw-on gutter guards will last longer but are harder and more expensive to install. Debris can get caught on the screw heads.

Home Height & Accessibility

Installing gutter guards on a home higher than a single-story costs more and requires a professional who is experienced working on roofs. Add $1 to $1.50 per linear foot for each additional story. Consider only adding gutter guards to the second story and above.

Gutter guards can be installed on gutters on any building such as barns, garages, and outbuildings. Difficult access to the building can increase the cost.

Roof Configuration & Type

The installation of gutter guards will cost more if you have multiple rooflines with 90-degree bends or a steeply pitched roof. Flat or shallow roofs are safer to work on, and the cost to install gutter guards isn’t as high.

Location & Climate

Urban areas have a higher cost of living, and this is reflected in the cost of installation. Also, the type of gutter guard you need will affect the end cost, as homes in colder climates need gutters and screens that can withstand the weight of snow and ice buildup.

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Gutter Protection System Accessories

Heated Gutter Guards Cost

Heated gutter guards cost $10 to $15 per foot installed which consists of a heating cable the prevents snow and ice dams from forming. Heat tape is another option at $77 per 100 feet, which is a waterproof cord you lay inside the gutter and plug it in. Be sure to choose self-regulating cables.

Downspout Screens

Screens in your downspout can keep them free of leaves and debris that might otherwise collect and clog the drain. Usually made of aluminum, steel, stainless steel, or copper, a downspout screen costs about $5 each. It sits in the downspout with no need for fasteners. Plastic screens or filters are also sold at the same price.

Contractor Installing Down Spout Filter on Gutter System

Instead of screens, some homeowners have found that increasing the width of their downspouts can allow a lot of the smaller debris that's not caught by the guards to flow out.

Downspout Extensions

Downspout extensions cost $8 to $15 per linear foot and are easy to install yourself. The downspout directs the water from gutters away from the home's foundation. Solid or flexible and usually made of vinyl, you can attach extensions to direct the water to dry places like a garden. One type even rolls itself back up once the water rush is over.

Gutter Cleaning

With gutter covers, you can save money by having to clean them a fraction of the time. Gutters without screens need cleaning at least twice a year during the spring and fall seasons. Gutter cleaning costs $75 to $350 each time depending on the size and stories of your home. Keeping gutters clear of debris will prevent them from clogging, overflowing, and helps them maintain their durability.

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Cost of Seamless Gutters with Leaf Guard

Leafguard and Kguard, make a single system unit of gutter plus gutter guard. The gutter is all one piece with just a small opening for water that keeps out leaves and debris. Seamless gutters with Leaf Guard built-in cost $30 to $60 per foot installed. They are more attractive on your home since they are one piece and one color.

Cost of Seamless Gutters with Leaf Guard
Material Cost Per Foot Average Price Installed
Vinyl $30.77 $4,615 – $6,153
Coated Steel $31.77 $4,766 – $6,354
Aluminum $37.77 $5,666 – $7,554
Copper $58.27 $8,741 – $11,654

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Are Gutter Guards Worth It?

Gutter guards are typically worth it for homes under constant attack from leaves and debris where gutters need to be cleaned twice a year. Gutter covers drastically cut down on the number of times you need to clean and typically pay for themselves after five years.

However, gutter guards come with an upfront cost of $760 to $1,529. Compare the annual $150 to $500 gutter cleaning cost to the total cost of installing leaf guards to see if it’s worth it for you.

Are Gutter Guards Worth It?
Guards No Guards
Installation $1,000 @ $6 SF $0
Cleaning $150 every 2 years $250 per year
Total Cost After 5 Yrs. $1,375 $1,250
Total Cost After 10 Yrs. $1,750 $2,500

Gutter guards reduce the frequency of gutter cleaning, but they won't completely eliminate it, no matter what the warranty implies.

Pros and Cons of Gutter Guards

There are many advantages and disadvantages of installing gutter guards to consider.


  • Having them makes it easier to clean your gutters.
  • No birds’ nests or other animals can make homes in your gutters.
  • Guards can be added to most existing gutters.
  • There’s no need to clean gutters frequently.
  • They keep water from building up in the gutter, which turns into stagnant water—a breeding ground for mosquitoes.
  • They can help the gutters to last longer since debris sitting in gutters can cause rust or erosion.
  • Heated gutter guards keep snow and ice from building up—ice and snowbanks create a heavy load and could damage the gutters.


  1. Some gutter guards, such as foam, can prevent moisture from escaping, which can cause mold or mildew problems.
  2. Some gutter guards, when combined with a cheaper gutter, might cause the gutter to sag and weaken due to the additional weight of the gutter guard.
  3. Gutter guards do not block 100% of the debris that falls on a house.
  4. The gutter will still need to be cleaned, just not nearly as often.
  5. There is not always a good return on investment (ROI). There's no guarantee that adding gutter guards will add value to your home.
  6. Installation can be expensive.
  7. Tree seeds can get caught in the gutter and sprout trees.

What Are Gutter Guards?

Gutter guards protect your gutters from filling up and causing clogs inside the gutters, which could create water damage problems in your home, and ice buildup and mosquito infestations in your gutters. The guards make sure the water runoff from the roof flows freely and drains properly.

Do Gutter Guards Really Work?

Gutter guards are effective to a certain point, and the type and brand you install will certainly play a significant role in their effectiveness. They will prevent most of the larger debris from collecting in your gutters, but they will not keep them pristinely clean.

Small debris can slip in through mesh guards—items such as pine needles, petals, buds, and floating dust. However, the small pieces will take longer to accumulate, and the gutters will not need cleaning as often.

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DIY Gutter Guards

Installing your own gutter guards can take a full 1 to 2 days, depending on the type you purchase. Some gutter guards (the most expensive kind) need to be installed by trained and certified professionals, and manufacturers won’t sell them to you directly. Working on a ladder can be dangerous, so be sure you're up for the challenge.

How to Install Gutter Guards

Many YouTube videos teach you how to install gutter guards, depending on the type. The easiest kind to install is the snap-on, one-size-fits-all gutter guard. They require no tools besides cutting. Some gutter guards simply lie inside the gutter, such as foam or brushes. These just need to be cut to size.

Some gutter guards fit over the top of the gutters and are attached by screws, nails, or rivets. Another kind of gutter guard is held in place by the roof's shingles and fastened at the front edge of the gutter.

Before purchasing our gutter guards, make sure the type fits your particular gutter width.

Main Tools Needed

  • Box cutters, utility knife, or tin snips
  • Screwdriver or power drill
  • Miter box
  • Self-tapping sheet metal screws

Guard Type

  1. Snap-On Guards – Slide guard between the shingle and underlay on the roof. You might need to loosen the space with a putty knife. If you crack a shingle, fix it with roofing putty. Clip the other side of the guard onto the outer edge of the gutter. Overlap the sections by ½”. Add miter joints to corners.
  2. Screw-Fastened Guards – Install brackets according to instruction with screws and some caulk around the heads to keep it waterproof. Slide guard under shingle layer and above underlay, if required. Attach the other side of the guard to the brackets or gutter lip with screws, and caulk screw heads. Add miter joints to corners.

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Free Gutter Guard Estimates

When installing gutter guards, always get at least three free estimates from referrals or websites like HomeGuide and Google. Hiring a gutter installer is like hiring any other home improvement contractor to work in your home. Make sure they have the following:

  • Insurance: General liability insurance.
  • Guarantee: Look for a guarantee on their work and materials.
  • Reviews/Ratings: Look for good ratings/reviews on HomeGuide and Google.
  • Brand: If a pro recommends using a specific brand, be sure to look up the gutter guard reviews before proceeding.
  • Upfront Costs: A verbal and written proposal for how much the job will cost.
  • Quality Materials: Make sure the are not using leftovers from their last job.
  • Experience: Look for at least five years’ of experience installing your type of gutter guard.

Get free estimates on HomeGuide from trusted gutter guard installation companies:

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