Enter your zip to
find local pros.

Gutters

Gutter Guard Installation

Average cost range:

$420 - $930

The average cost to professionally install gutter guards on a home ranges between $420 and $930. The national average cost to install gutter guards is $4.40 to $5.20 per linear foot. Prices depend on the type of gutter guards and total linear feet your home requires. Basic gutter guards can cost as low as $1 or less per linear foot, while heavier duty gutter guards can cost up to $6.70 per linear foot. Gutter guards are a valuable investment that can protect your home’s roof and gutter system. They are low-cost tools that can save homeowners the hours and cost of regular maintenance and cleaning.

Compare the best gutter contractors in your area.

Installing a good gutter system on your home is crucial. It can mean the difference between having a structurally sound home that is safe from water damage, and having a home that deteriorates over time from the ravages of inclement weather. This is especially the case for those in areas prone to heavy rain or snow. In order to have effective gutters that provide the protection, safety and functionality you need, a gutter guard installation is worth considering. Gutter guards make gutter systems do their job more effectively as well as lessen the time you need to spend on routine cleaning and maintenance.

What are Gutter Guards?

brush-gutter-guards

Gutter guards are coverings or screens for your gutter system that are designed to keep them from clogging. Many homeowners are familiar with the fact that gutters tend to collect large amounts of debris, precipitation, dirt, and other outdoor muck. Cleaning out the gutters is one of the necessary but tedious chores that comes along with being a homeowner. Having gutter guards installed can help to alleviate the issue of clogged gutters by preventing large amounts of debris from clogging the system. To this end, they can effectively divert rainwater away from your home and keep it better protected.

How Much Do Gutter Guards Cost?

Gutter Guards

Gutter guards protect your gutter and downspout system from damaging debris build-up

  • Eases homeowner gutter maintenance

  • Prevents flood and foundation damage

  • Protects your home during storms

  • Lasts 2-25 years

The cost to have gutter guards installed ranges between $3.10 and $6.70 per linear foot on average for U.S. homes. The national average to install gutter guards is $4.40 per linear foot for aluminum and $5.20 per linear foot for vinyl. To get gutter guards installed on a 1,600 square foot U.S. home, the average cost would be $700 to $830. Many homeowners opt to add gutter guards onto their gutter replacement project cost for convenience.

This price range includes the most common gutter guard materials – aluminum and vinyl – but you can find other types of gutter guards and their costs below. Note that this average cost is by your home’s linear feet – not square feet.

Copy of Gutter Guard Costs
Gutter Guard TypeCost per linear ft.Cost for 150 linear ft.
Screen$0.30 - $1$45 - $150
Foam$1 - $2$150 - $300
Mesh$2.50 - $4$375 - $600
Bottle brush$3 - $4$450 - $600
Aluminum$3.10 - $5.70$465 - $855
Reverse curve$3.50 - $6.50$525 - $975
Vinyl$3.70 - $6.70$555 - $1,005

Gutter Installation Cost Calculator

Take Me There

How Do Gutter Guards Work?

Gutter guards are a simple, preventative systems for your gutters. They help gutters do their main job more effectively – keep water from flooding or pooling in or around your home.

gutter guard quote

Without guards, gutters can become easily clogged with outdoor debris, such as leaves, twigs, pine needles, and even birds nests. This can prevent rainwater from seamlessly flowing away from your home and out the downspouts, and can quickly become a problem.

Gutter guards are coverings that are equipped with small holes, which allow water to pour into the gutter and out the downspouts, while preventing larger debris from becoming trapped and preventing water flow. They can be used on virtually any type of gutter system, including both sectional and seamless gutters.

Keep in mind that most roofing and gutter experts agree that most guards are not 100% effective. However, they can do a great deal to help prevent dangerous clogs and gutter replacements, not to mention expensive water and foundation damage. Using guards on your gutters can also reduce tons of unnecessary weekend maintenance for the homeowner.

Benefits of Gutter Guards

Gutter guards provide plenty of benefits, such as helping you avoid gutter repairs and damage. Let’s investigate the pros and cons of installing guards.

Prevents damage from debris and ice
First and foremost, one huge benefit of using guards is to help protect gutters from harmful ice clogs, also known as ice dams. When ice clogs your gutter system, it can cause water to pool around your house or even flow into your home.

Keep in mind that during the winter, in colder geographical regions, preventing snow and ice entirely is impossible. While guards will probably not be 100% effective in preventing ice dams and icicles, they can help to minimize the problem. You can explore heated gutter guards if you are worried about ice building up in your gutter system.

Gutter guards also provide protection from debris, like leaves and sticks, which can get stuck in gutters and downspouts easily – especially during the spring and fall and during storms. K-style gutters are especially prone to clogs and benefit the most from gutter guards.

This is why home services experts recommend cleaning out your gutters twice a year – at the end of spring, and the end of fall. You should be using this twice-annual cleaning routine in addition to using guards to best avoid clogged gutters.

Saves gutters from pest infestations
In addition to debris, gutter guards can also spare gutters from damage caused by pests. When gutters are uncovered, rodents, squirrels, and birds like to build nests inside of them. Uncovered gutters can lead to insects, such as mosquitos and spiders, breeding inside of stagnant water that has accumulated.

Certain types of guards are better at keeping certain pests out of your gutters. To determine which type of gutter guard is best for your home’s location, it’s best to seek advice from a professional.

Can prevent fires
Gutters can easily become a fire-hazard without gutter guards, especially for homeowners who live in areas that are prone to bushfires.

During fires, winds can carry embers through the neighborhood. Gutters, which naturally collect flammable debris such as twigs and leaves, are prone to dangerously catching fire. Gutter guards can prevent your home from igniting, since there will be no dry, combustible materials caught inside the gutters.

Reduces maintenance
Since gutter guards can protect gutters from debris and pest infestations, you may not need to clean them as often as you would with uncovered gutters. Guards can also defend your gutters against rust and rot that can be caused by debris and water. These benefits can go a long way toward saving homeowners time and money, as well as prevent avoidable gutter replacements.
Prevents mold, mildew, and foundation damage
When outdoor debris is kept out of your gutter system, this is turn helps you avoid mold and mildew from growing inside your gutters. You should always check for mold and mildew growth as you clean out your gutters regularly. However, gutter guards can help to minimize this issue and keep your roofing in better shape for longer.

Certain types of gutter guards prevent mold and mildew better than others. To best prevent mold and mildew, make sure to ask a gutter professional about the best type of guards for your home and area.

Additionally, gutter guards protect the foundation of your home. When water, debris, mold and mildew sit inside your gutter system undetected for long periods of time, it can create pressure cracking, and/or erosion to your home’s foundation. Foundation damage is a serious and costly problem, especially when detected too late.

Cons of Gutter Guards

Are there any downsides to having gutter guards installed? While gutter guards are incredibly valuable to most homeowners, some may opt out of an installation. We recommend considering the below factors to ensure gutter guards are right for your home.

Installation cost
The investment may be a concern to some homeowners. A gutter guard installation can be a bit pricy, ranging from $420 to $930 on average. The overall cost largely depends on the type of gutter guard, material, and whether or not you need to have it professionally installed.

It’s important to keep in mind that some types of guards may cost less, but not be as effective as others. For instance, foam and bottle brush guards are cheap and can be installed DIY. However, they are typically less durable, long-lasting, and effective compared to other types. Make sure to do your due diligence to find a product that will work well with your gutters so you can reap the benefits.

Not all debris will be caught
Although much of the debris that can damage your gutters will be caught by guards, that doesn’t mean they stop all debris from getting in. Even with guards, small debris like pine needles and seeds can still accumulate inside of the gutters. Also, if small leaves get into your gutters, you may be confronted with moss and algae growing inside.

Make sure to investigate the best types of gutter guards for your geographical area and typical weather conditions to avoid these issues to the best of your ability. Also, while gutter guards can reduce the time and money spent on cleaning gutters, it doesn’t mean you’re off the hook entirely from gutter maintenance. You will still need to clean your gutters, though probably not as often as you would otherwise. Depending on the type you install, you will also need to clean the gutter guard themselves according to recommendations.

Added weight
When guards are installed, they add additional weight to a roof that can over time put pressure on it and cause damage. The added weight of the guards can also cause the gutters to sag—especially if the guards are not cleaned often enough. Be sure to check the weight of the products you are installing, and ask a professional whether or not the material and weight is going to be compatible with your type of gutters and structure.

Types of Gutter Guards

Some gutter experts say that there are three main types of gutter guards – screens, mesh, and surface tension (also known as reverse curve). However, it’s important to know about two additional types as well – bottle brush and foam gutter guards. Take a look at the details of each type of gutter guard below, including installation costs.

Screen

Screen gutter guards are one of the most simple and popularly used gutter guard types, thanks to their low cost and easy installation. They can be made of aluminum or vinyl.

Screen Gutter Guards

Most simple and widely used gutter guard option on U.S. homes

  • Cost as low as $1 per linear foot

  • Lightweight and will not damage roof

  • Can be installed DIY

  • Lasts 2-20 years

Typically made with either metal, nylon, plastic, or wire, screen guards are installed by lifting the bottom row of roof shingles and inserting them beneath. When installed, screen guards sit atop your gutter openings and prevent debris from entering.

Screens can be installed on one’s own, but many homeowners choose to have them professionally installed to ensure they are secure. They are one of the easiest and most affordable types of guards to install.

Screen guards can cost between $1 and $6.70 per linear foot, depending on the screen material. Aluminum and vinyl screens cost more, while plastic will cost less. However, screen gutter guards are not entirely foolproof and leave the gutters somewhat susceptible to clogs from smaller debris, such as pine needles or seeds.

The most durable and long-lasting screen gutter guards are usually metal types, such as aluminum. You should plan to clean these screens at least twice per year.

Mesh

Mesh gutter guards work much like screens, but they are made of a lightweight micro mesh material. Just like screens, mesh guards can be inserted beneath the roof shingles and sit tightly against the roof, atop the gutter opening.

Mesh Gutter Guards

With both micro-mesh and metal mesh options, these gutter guards provide the best filtration

  • Very effective at keeping out debris

  • Relatively lightweight

  • Should be installed professionally

  • Lasts 10-20 years

One benefit of mesh gutter guards in comparison to screens is that they are lighter-weight. Because mesh openings are smaller in size, they also provide better protection and filtration from debris. Only very small particles are filtered through mesh guards into the gutters. This is usually very effective at keeping leaves away. Micro-mesh gutter guards are also available to offer even more effective protection from debris build-up. Still, you should plan to clean mesh gutter guards at least once annually.

Keep in mind that mesh guards are slightly more difficult to install on your own. You will probably need to have them professionally installed, which results in a higher cost than DIY options.

In addition, sometimes during heavy rainfall, water can slide across mesh gutter guards (and especially micro-mesh guards) due to the very small openings. This can defeat the purpose of the guard entirely, and also potentially cause damage to your home.

Reverse Curve

Reverse curve gutter guards, also known as surface tension gutter guards, and made with light-weight metal or plastic. They are different from other types of gutter guards in how they divert water from your gutter system.

Reverse Curve Gutter Guards

Made of metal or plastic, these gutter guards direct rainwater and debris over the top of the gutter

  • Natural appearance that blends with gutters

  • Very durable

  • Effective at keeping out leaves

  • Lasts 5-20 years

Reverse curve guards, as their name suggests, directs water over the top of the gutter, around a curve, and ultimately into the gutter beneath. At the same time, debris is directed away from the gutter by sliding off the top of the curved guard and onto the ground.

Reverse curve gutter guards can be slightly more attractive compared to other types like screens and mesh. They often come in various colors that can match your home’s visual style. Keep in mind that will likely be able to see the guards from the ground level, which some homeowners may not like. Additionally, they tend to work effectively in keeping leaves out of the gutters, especially compared to brushes and foam.

At the same time, reverse curve gutter guards are more costly and do require professional installation. Similar to mesh guards, they could potentially void your roofing warranty if they lift roof shingles significantly over time. Also, keep in mind that during heavy rainfall, they may not be totally effective.

Roof and gutter experts tend to debate their effectiveness, appearance, and longevity. Some experts do not believe in the effectiveness of reverse curve gutter guards at all.

Bottle Brush

Brush gutter guards are unique in their material. They are made of heavy bristles, also known as “bottle brush,” which are inserted directly into the gutter. This allows water and smaller particles to flow through the gutters, while keeping out larger debris such as leaves and twigs. After a storm, heavy wind, or simply once a month as routine, homeowners can use a ladder and easily remove debris from the bristles by hand.

Bottle Brush Gutter Guards

Act as a filter for debris while allowing rainwater to flow through gutters

  • DIY-friendly

  • Very affordable

  • Effective for heavy rain

  • Lasts 5-10 years

Luckily, bottle brush guards are DIY-friendly and very easy to install. Homeowners can simply measure and cut the brushes to fit their home. They are also cheap, can be purchased easily at a home improvement store, and make gutter maintenance easier. They will not void your roof warranty since they are inserted easily into the gutter, rather than beneath roof shingles.

On the downside, brushes can trap smaller debris in their bristles which can require additional attention. Plan to remove them and clean them thoroughly at least twice per year. Over time, you will want to either switch out the brush guards to invest in a heavier duty option.

Foam or Sponge

Foam or sponge gutter guards are similar to bottle brush guards, as they sit directly inside the gutter. Since they are made of porous materials, they allow water to flow through the gutter while keeping debris out. Debris will normally sit on top of the foam without falling inside the gutters, then simply blow away or can be removed by hand.

Foam Gutter Guards

Sponge-like gutter guard that sits inside gutters and allow water to pass through while blocking debris

  • Easy DIY solution

  • Very affordable

  • Will not void a roof warranty

  • Lasts 2-3 years

Homeowners can easily purchase and install foam and sponge guards on their own. Like bottle brush, they can be measured and cut to fit the gutter easily. Before inserting them into the gutters, clean out the gutters and make sure there is no debris stuck inside that will sit beneath the foam or sponge.

Although they are an affordable gutter guard solution, foam and sponge guards are not intended to be used for the long-term. They may need to be removed and cleaned, or even replaced, twice a year. Plus, they have the ability to freeze in the winters when temperatures drop very low. When this happens, water flow can be impacted. Lastly, due to their material, they can cause mold, mildew, and moss build-up.

However, foam guards can be a great solution to easily insert into the gutters and protect your home prior to a storm.

Finding an Experienced Gutter Professional

If you decide to add gutter guards to your home, be sure to consult with an experienced professional. A gutter installer can help you explore the best options for your home, as well as your budget. Be sure to investigate whether or not you want a short-term DIY solution, or a long-lasting professional solution that will protect your gutter system for years to come.

The pros at Modernize can connect you with trusted, local gutter professionals who will help you choose the best guards and complete the installation.