Top 12 Best Gutter Guards for Pine Needles 2021 + FAQ

Falling leaves look beautiful just about anywhere – until you have to clean them out of your gutters.

Those sneaky pine needles can be particularly troublesome, and climbing ladders to clear gutter debris isn’t anyone’s idea of fun.

It’s not the safest activity either.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at the best gutter guards for pine needles on the market, and you can have peace-of-mind every year when Mother Nature starts to deposit gifts on your roof.

A buyer’s guide and FAQ section will follow.

Let’s get our minds IN the gutter, and the pine needles OUT.

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12 Best Rain Gutter Guards for Pine Needles 2021

Raptor Stainless Steel Micro-Mesh Gutter Guard

Designed to fit any roof or gutter system, this stainless steel guard is a micro-mesh option, regarded as one of the best gutter guards for pine needles there is.

It keeps just about anything out of your gutters and drainpipes, including leaves, roof-grit, and other natural debris. It also prevents pesky rodents from trying to make a home where they don’t belong, while the V-bend technology allows for superior water filtration.

Easy to install on any five-inch wide gutter, it won’t void your roof warranty and includes everything you need to set it up yourself.

Pros

  • Filters just about anything.
  • Advanced trough technology for water direction.
  • Very highly recommend by other homeowners.

Cons

  • On the more expensive side.
  • Decent DIY skills required for installation.

Takeaway

The Raptor gutter guard is an extremely popular solution for keeping your roof gutters clear of anything the world can throw at them. For the very best gutter protection and water filtration – micro-mesh seems to be the way to go.

FlexxPoint Gutter Cover System

The Flexxpoint gutter cover system is made from premium domestic aluminum and spans five-inch gutters with ease. Stainless steel installation screws are included, and it will not void your roof warranty if you want to put them in yourself.

They cannot be seen from the ground and will protect your gutters while the small holes allow for superior water filtration. The three-point design will never clog and is designed to elevate wet leaves off the surface to ensure water and airflow continues uninterrupted.

Once dried, leaves will simply blow away of their own accord – so no cleaning is required.

Pros

  • Easy-to-handle sections.
  • Choice of colors available.
  • High-volume water-flow.
  • Great feedback from other homeowners.
  • Durable construction.

Cons

  • Pine needles and roof grit may still slip through.
  • Heavy rain might cause some problems.

Takeaway

A quality gutter guard system that offers good ventilation and airflow with a unique three-point design to help keep wet leaves from clogging the surface. Deluges aside, this should get the job done.

GutterStuff Guard Gutter Filter

If you’re looking for a gutter guard that’s the easiest to install, then you’ve found it with this option from Gutterstuff. That’s because it’s made out of foam – an interesting gutter-protection concept that does away with a metal guard’s lengthy installation process and screw hardware.

Completely hidden when viewed from below, the foam simply slots inside the gutter, protecting it year-round through all climates and conditions. It’s particularly adept at preventing mosquitos and other nuisance insects from making a home and breeding.

Made from durable polyether outdoor foam, it won’t degenerate over time, and you can simply trim to fit using a utility knife.

Pros

  • Lightweight.
  • Super easy installation.
  • Choice of widths available.
  • Affordable price point.
  • Nothing will get through apart from water.

Cons

  • Heavy rain will increase water-clogged weight significantly.
  • Might not be the most long-lasting option.

Takeaway

It’s a real mixed bag with this one, and the jury is out on both longevity and the weight problem it might cause over time. Still, if you need something up and running in no time that will guarantee nothing gets into your gutter – this could be the solution for you.

Superior Gutter Guards Stainless-Steel Gutter Cover

Here we have another micro-mesh option which just might be the best gutter guards for fir needles and pine needles out there.

Designed to fit any traditional five-inch gutter, it can stand up to the most challenging weather conditions, with a patented raised construction that allows debris to simply runoff.

Rainwater is redirected where it needs to go, and your gutters are protected from insects, birds, rodents, shingle crumbs, and nature’s tree debris.

Made with a stainless steel screen with lightweight aluminum rails, it’s tough, durable, and designed to last for many years.

Pros

  • Attractive, functional design.
  • Easy-to-install.
  • Hardware included.
  • Three-in-one protection.

Cons

  • Pricey.
  • Water flow might not be the best with heavy downpours.

Takeaway

Altogether a great micro-mesh option that directs water into the drainpipe, keeps the elements at bay and lifts leaves and debris off the surface to be blown away another day.

LeafTek Gutter Guard Leaf Protection

Able to handle a “huge” water capacity and eliminate the risk of overflow, these gutter guards from LeafTek are made from tough, durable aluminum and come with stainless steel screw hardware for installation.

Designed to keep everything out of your gutter (including elephants – apparently), they don’t install under your roof shingles, thus keeping your warranty intact.

The raised ridge design allows excellent airflow while preventing wet leaves from stacking up, while the premium baked enamel finish ensures they will last for many years to come.

Pros

  • Can handle heavy rain.
  • Easy-to-manage sections.
  • Choice of black or white finish.
  • Durable, long-lasting construction.

Cons

  • A little on the pricey side.
  • Pine needles might still get through – as will shingle sediment.

Takeaway

If you’re concerned about heavier rainfalls and gutter run-off, then this option from LeafTek could be your answer as it’s designed to allow a monsoon through. And check out this review on the best gutter cleaning tools if you still need to do a sweep once a season.

A-M Aluminum Gutter Guard

This gutter guard has been made with a heavy-gauge aluminum that has been designed never to rust, rot, or deteriorate, ensuring you have the very best long-lasting protection for your gutter system.

All but invisible from the ground, it offers 380 holes per foot so it’s able to handle downpours with ease while limiting the amount of debris that might clog things up.

Able to work with all types of roofs including metal and shingle, each section is tabbed for easy installation, and it has a patented bubble design that allows water and air to flow through even if covered with nature’s unwanted crap.

Pros

  • Highly recommended.
  • Durable, long-lasting design.
  • Easy-to-install.
  • Lightweight.

Cons

  • Sharp edges when trimmed.
  • Build up likely in heavy-debris areas.

Takeaway

Even the best gutter guards might have some sharp edges when you’re installing them, so it’s highly advisable you wear some good quality waterproof work gloves while you’re at it. Still, this A-M Gutter Guard is a great option.

E-Z-Gutter Guard EZ-Shield-10 Gutter Guard

E-Z by name and easy by nature, this gutter guard is super simple to install – given the fact that you don’t need to worry about screws or other hardware in the process.

Designed for five-inch residential gutters, each section is notched for an easy overlap and made with heavy-duty aluminum that won’t rot or deteriorate over time. Able to withstand even the toughest weather conditions, you simply snap it into place and the reverse louvers will allow rainfall to flow through while keeping debris out.

And don’t worry about UV rays, as the attractive black finish has been treated to protect from sun damage so it won’t fade or break down.

Pros

  • Affordable.
  • Super easy installation.
  • No screws needed.
  • Can be removed for maintenance.
  • Keeps pine needles and maple “helicopters” out.

Cons

  • Again – watch out for the sharp aluminum.
  • Not suitable for colder weather due to potential ice build-up.

Takeaway

Although it’s designed to heat fast for ice and snow removal, it’s probably best reserved for warmer climes only. Still, this gutter protection option from E-Z is a great shout if you’re not confident with using drills and screws during installation.

Small Hole Speed Screen Gutter Guard

Not too dissimilar from a cheese grater (without the sharp edges) this five-inch wide small hole gutter screen offers a lot of protection from leaves and other natural debris. It’s very easy to install, too, as it requires no screws to do so, simply bend it into place with a spring-like tension that’ll keep the guard secure.

The low profile design allows for matter to blow off the gutter with no problems, and the four-foot sections are all made from durable aluminum for long-term use.

Cover your gutters in double-quick time with this clever protection solution.

Pros

  • Snaps into place.
  • No screws required.
  • Notched for overlaps.
  • Near invisible from the ground.
  • Ideal for heavy rain.
  • Anti-rust design.

Cons

  • Pine needles and smaller debris might still fall through.

Takeaway

No gutter guard is going to be 100% successful at keeping those dreaded pine needles away, but this one makes a decent go of at least reducing gutter waste, as well as being a literal snap to install.

Ultra Flo Leaf Guard Gutter Protector

Ultra Flo’s leaf gutter guard is available in a choice of sizes, so for pine needles, you’ll probably want to opt for this one – which has very fine micro-mesh holes.

Like the previous entry in our review, this also doesn’t require screws or mounting hardware, and can simply be snapped into place in either a five or six-inch gutter – depending on what you need.

With a black powder-coated finish over the durable aluminum construction, you get a rust- and corrosion-proof system that should last for years to come, and as it hooks directly into the gutter, it’s not going to void any roof warranties by messing with shingles.

Pros

  • Easy, no hardware installation.
  • Choice of hole sizes.
  • Invisible from the ground.
  • Durable construction.
  • UV protected.

Cons

  • Can be quite tough to bend into place.

Takeaway

Another quality gutter protection offering that requires no extra hardware to install, but you’ll still need a pair of tin-snips in order to cut it to length. Just don’t forget to wear a pair of decent gloves while you’re at it – and for all your yard work.

Smart Screen GPS401 Gutter Protection Covers

Good quality gutter protection can be very expensive, so-much-so that you might wonder if it’s really worth it. But if you’re on a budget, then you should check out this option from Smart Screen.

Made from durable aluminum, they do exactly what the other gutter covers do for a fraction of the price.

Designed for five-inch-wide residential gutters, they also provide additional strength to the system once installed, and the heavy-duty construction is built to last. Installation is pretty straightforward, and you don’t have to attach them to the fascia if you prefer, or fiddle around with the roof shingles.

Pros

  • Excellent price.
  • Raised design to improve airflow.
  • Solid construction.
  • No need to use screws.

Cons

  • Can still be a bit awkward to install.
  • Wet leaves might still pile up.

Takeaway

I must say I’m pretty blown away by the price point here, and so they’re well worth a try if you need something that’s a bit more budget-friendly.

Amerimax Home Products Snap-in Filter Gutter Guard

This snap-in filter gutter guard has an interesting design, in the fact that it uses a combination of fine mesh and holes to keep unwanted leaf and roof debris out.

As such, it should be perfectly suitable to not only prevent pine needles from sneaking through but also allow decent water filtration. It’s also made from a durable PVC construction, so it gives you a lightweight alternative to metal, and it means you’re not dealing with potential sharp edges when trimming to fit.

It’s a great price, too, and one carton will cover 75 feet of gutter, with most homes requiring two packages to get the job done.

Pros

  • Long-lasting PVC.
  • Super easy to install.
  • Fine mesh filter.
  • Great price point.

Cons

  • They might be a little too good and keep water out of your gutter.

Takeaway

Perfect for anyone who prefers using PVC to metal, this snap-in gutter protection system keeps just about everything out of your gutter. The problem is – that might include rainwater, too.

GutterBrush Simple Gutter Guard

Now, I was tempted not to include this unique gutter guard, on the basis that the jury is out regarding how successful it is at keeping pine needles out of your gutter. So, I thought I’d let you be the judge.

The brush design certainly prevents leaves and other material from clogging up your drainage system, and although I said the foam was the easiest to install, I think I stand corrected here.

Simply lay each cylinder-shaped section in your gutter and you’re done, no need to cut, fasten, or meddle with your roof fixtures at all. The brushes help to keep water flowing, and keep your time climbing ladders to a bare minimum.

Pros

  • Very easy installation.
  • Highly rated.
  • Excellent water flow.

Cons

  • Mixed feelings about keeping pine needles out of the rain gutters.
  • Might still be prone to clogging/required cleaning in high leaf fall regions.

Takeaway

I’ll leave this one up to you. I think it might work quite well in the right circumstances, it’s certainly a breeze to install, and a nice alternative to sheet gutter sections. I’m just a little doubtful about its pine preventing capabilities – but it’s up to you.

How to Choose the Best Gutter Guards for Pine Needles

Person installing gutter guard

Below, you’ll find an in-depth buyer’s guide to help you choose a gutter guard system that’s right for you and your home. Look out for the FAQ section that should cover anything we might miss.

A Word of Caution

Let’s start with a small caveat before we go charging into the pros and cons of gutter guards.

They’re all going to fail.

Yes, you read that right.

It doesn’t matter how good they are or how much money you pay – at some point in their lives, all gutter guards will let you down eventually.

You should also pay attention to the type of weather you most experience where you live – as the success and/or longevity of a gutter guard will strongly depend on it.

Also, consider how much debris is actually going to be falling on and into your gutters annually.

It’s important that you understand this when shopping for the best guards for gutters, as there isn’t one product that’s going to work miracles.

You will still need to clean and inspect your gutter system at least once per year – sometimes more depending on the conditions.

Material/Durability

Gutter guards are made out of a variety of materials, and you should look for what is going to be the most suitable for your roof and gutter system.

You’ll find that most options use a combination of stainless steel and aluminum, which offers durable but lightweight properties.

Foam is super-easy to install and keeps just about everything out – but it can get weighty with water if installed in areas with particularly heavy rainfall.

PVC gutter covers are also available, providing a decent alternative to metal if that’s what you would prefer working with.

Brush guards offer their own advantages and disadvantages – and their pine-needle prevention is largely unproven.

Look for UV treated gutter guards if you’re concerned about sun damage or deterioration. However, that shouldn’t be too much of a problem if your house is shaded by trees in the first place.

In the end, you should still choose a product that’s designed to last, so you can all but forget about it after installation.

Size and Weight

Residential gutter systems are usually five-inches or six inches wide. Most gutter protection systems are designed to fit that space, and size options are available to cater to your needs.

Before purchase, it’s recommended you mount the ladder and take a measuring tape up there to confirm.

As mentioned, gutter systems aren’t meant to carry too much weight, so you need to look for a guard that isn’t going to add unnecessary loads to what is already in place. Some options will be lighter than others – so pay attention to that.

Installation

Ahhh, the eternal home improvement question. Do I do it myself, or do I get a professional in?

I can fully understand that the prospect of climbing a ladder to install gutter protection isn’t that thrilling for the best of us, so there’s no shame in getting a contractor in to do it for you.

Just be fully prepared for the extra cost.

For anyone willing to give it a go themselves, look for easy-to-install systems that require the minimum amount of tools or extra equipment.

And make sure you thoroughly check your own roof and shingle setup. The best gutter guards for metal roofs are likely to be different from that of wood or vinyl fascias – should screws be required.

Top-tip: please be careful when you’re installing metal or aluminum guards, as cutting them will produce very sharp edges. Try wearing a pair of these quality leather work gloves to keep your hands protected at all times.

Cost

As you might already have noticed from the reviews above, the cost of gutter guards is much of a muchness.

It’s up to you to find out the lengths you will need, and plan to be as cost-effective as possible as a result.

Don’t forget how much you’ll save if you self install.

But even the best cheap gutter guards for pine needles are all around the same price. You get what you pay for these days.

FAQs

Gutter guard with fallen leaves on it

What is the best gutter guard system for pine needles?

The best gutter guard for me might not be the best gutter guard for you, as contrary to popular belief – it’s not “one-size-fits-all” when it comes to residential gutters.

However, for protection against pine needles, I would choose a micro-mesh product – as it will prevent just about anything from getting through – apart from water and air.

Do gutter guards work in heavy rain?

Great question – and it really depends on the type of guard you’re considering, and in particular – how it lets water through and keeps debris out.

In truth, just about any gutter guard system is going to cause overflow given the right circumstances. If the deluge is heavy enough, nothing is going to allow water through fast enough – unless you don’t have any protection at all.

Here’s the conundrum – it stands to reason that more holes/wider openings in a gutter guard will improve water flow, and reduce the chances of Niagara Falls coming down from above.

The trade-off is you’re increasing the chance of pine needles and other debris getting through to clog your gutter and drain system.

In short, it’s a fine balancing act and you should choose your product based on both the weather and the tree coverage/chance of roof debris in your particular area.

Do you still have to clean gutters with gutter guards?

While some companies will claim otherwise, unfortunately, it’s likely that you will have to take a look up there at least once per year.

You might get lucky and the system will require very little cleaning or maintenance.

Or, debris has still managed to get through and it will need an annual spring-clean.

In the end, it depends on several circumstances that you’re not able to control. Unless, of course, you move house, cut down all the trees in the neighborhood, or invent a weather control machine.

Incidentally, if you do get a lot of rainfall in your area, consider picking up a quality rain barrel to make the best use of all that free sky water.

What is the best gutter cleaning tool?

Happy you asked, as I’ve done a complete rundown just to cater to your question. Check out this review on the best gutter cleaning tools and hopefully, you’ll find the one that’s right for you.

Do any gutter guards really work?

Yes, they do – with some caveats that I’ve mentioned above. With ANY gutter guard, you’re going to run into problems eventually, and they will still need a clean and/or some maintenance every so often.

That said, they are much better than having nothing at all – especially if you live in a densely wooded neighborhood or area.

And don’t forget, they provide excellent protection against critters and insects making their homes where you certainly don’t want them to.

Is it safe to lean a ladder on the gutter when installing a gutter guard?

I would strongly advise against it. Gutters aren’t meant to take a lot of weight, and leaning yourself on a heavy ladder against them is risking damage or deformity that might impede their performance.

You should try your best to avoid this if at all possible.

Using the correct size of ladder is a start.

Another way is to use a ladder stand-off for gutters, which is an ingenious solution if you don’t want to put your full weight against anything while scaling heights.

Are gutter guards a waste of money?

Again, this depends on a number of factors. First, you should determine if you actually need them.

If you’re in an area that doesn’t receive a lot of leaf or debris fall – then you can probably save money and not bother with a gutter guard.

However – you will still need to clean and inspect your gutter system regularly throughout the year.

If, like me, you live in a leafy neighborhood (with a giant maple right in the backyard) then having gutter guards is a very good idea and will prevent headaches for 80-90% of the time.

Check your drains, pipes, and gutters during and after heavy rainfall to see how things are literally flowing. If there are problems and blockages due to leaves and other material – gutter guards might be the best solution.

Here’s a top tip – if you’re up and down a ladder like a yo-yo cleaning your gutters every year – then you should invest in some gutter guards. Simple.

How do you clean gutters without moving gutter guards?

There are several ways to do this – depending on the type of gutter guard you currently have or are thinking of installing on your home.

First, you could always let Mother Nature take its course, as leaves and debris will eventually dry, decompose, and/or be blown away.

Climbing up onto the roof and using a quality handheld leaf blower is one solution – but just make sure you take care when doing so.

Using a pressure washer is a good way to get through the holes and clean underneath the guard system.

For a visual guide to cleaning gutters with guards, check out the video below.

Do pine needles need a special gutter guard?

I would say so, yes. Pine and fir needles (and other small, slim types of debris) will still manage to sneak through if your defenses aren’t tight enough.

This means that – if pine needles are your main concern when it comes to material blocking your drains and gutters, you should be looking for a gutter guard specially designed to keep them out.

Micro-mesh is widely regarded as the best possible solution – although other options are available depending on the scale of the problem.

Conclusion

Nature’s falling debris can cause a real headache for homeowners each year, not least when it clogs our drainage system.

I hope this review has helped point you in the direction of the best gutter guards for pine needles, and that you’ve found a solution that will work for you.

Personally, I’d probably go with the Raptor Gutter Guard, as I think it will 100% keep the smaller debris out and allow the water in.

Let me know which product you’d go for and why.

Best of luck!