Skip to Main Content
NJ Gutter logo
NJ Gutter logo

How to Remove Gutter Guards for Cleaning

Man cleaning a clogged gutter. Featured image for “How to Remove Gutter Guards for Cleaning”

Gutter guards can come in handy if you want to keep debris out of your gutters. Thus, they’re a lifesaver when it comes to cleaning your gutters and maintaining your home’s drainage system.

However, they too need some TLC from time to time. Proper gutter guard removal is essential to ensure they function optimally. In this article, we’ll walk you through 10 simple steps to remove and clean your gutter guards.

Step 1: Gather Your Tools

Before you start, make sure you have all the necessary tools and equipment at hand. You’ll need a sturdy ladder, a pair of work gloves, a bucket, a trowel or scoop, a garden hose with a spray nozzle, and a scrub brush with a long handle.

Step 2: Safety First

Safety is vital in gutter guard removal. Ensure your ladder is on a stable surface and positioned at the correct angle. Always have someone spot you if possible. Put on your work gloves to protect your hands from sharp debris and potential pests.

Step 3: Get on the Ladder

Climb up the ladder carefully, making sure to maintain three points of contact at all times. This means having both feet and one hand securely on the ladder. Once you’ve reached the gutter height, take a moment to assess the condition of the gutter guards. If you notice any damage or loose screws, make a note of it for future repairs.

Step 4: Remove the Screws or Clips

Most gutter guards are secured in place with screws or clips. Using a screwdriver or a suitable tool, carefully remove the screws or unclip the guards. Keep these screws or clips in a safe place to ensure you don’t lose them during the cleaning process.

Step 5: Lift and Inspect

With the screws or clips removed, gently lift the gutter guards off the gutter. Take a moment to inspect the guards for any visible damage or excessive debris buildup. If you notice any major damage, consider replacing the damaged sections before reinstallation.

Step 6: Empty the Debris

Place the removed gutter guards next to your work area and use your trowel or scoop to empty the collected debris into a bucket. This can include leaves, twigs, dirt, and other debris that has accumulated over time. Be thorough in your cleaning to ensure unrestricted water flow in your gutters.

Step 7: Rinse and Scrub

Once you’ve removed the bulk of the debris, use your garden hose with a spray nozzle to rinse off any remaining dirt and residue. For stubborn buildup, take your scrub brush with a long handle and gently scrub away the dirt. Pay extra attention to the areas where water flows, as these need to be clear for proper drainage.

Step 8: Reassemble the Gutter Guards

After cleaning and ensuring the guards are free from debris, it’s time to reattach them to the gutters. Carefully position the gutter guards back in place and secure them with the screws or clips you removed earlier. Make sure they fit snugly and are properly aligned with the gutter.

Step 9: Test the Flow

Before you pack up your tools, it’s essential to check if everything is in working order. Use your garden hose again and run water through the gutters to ensure that water flows smoothly and there are no clogs or leaks.

Step 10: Clean Up

Once you’re satisfied with the flow and confident that everything is back in working order, safely descend the ladder. Collect all your tools and equipment and clean up the work area. Dispose of the debris you collected appropriately.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I remove gutter guards?

Gutter guard removal involves gathering your tools (i.e., a screwdriver, gloves, and a ladder), carefully unscrewing or unclipping the guards, lifting them off the gutter, and storing the screws safely before cleaning or replacing them as needed.

How do you clean gutters without removing gutter guards?

You can clean gutters without removing gutter guards by using a long-handled scoop or a high-powered hose attachment to clear debris from the top of the guards. Regular maintenance like this can help keep your gutters clean and functioning well.

Are gutter guards a waste?

Gutter guards are not a waste if you have a lot of trees around your home, as they can help prevent leaves and debris from clogging your gutters. However, in areas with minimal tree cover, they may not be as beneficial.

Do gutter guards cause problems?

Gutter guards can sometimes cause problems if they are not installed correctly or if they become clogged with debris, leading to water overflow or ice dam formation. Proper installation and regular maintenance are essential to prevent such issues.


Cleaning your gutters is a crucial part of home maintenance that can help prevent costly damage down the line. But to do that, you need to know proper gutter guard removal first.

By following these simple steps, you can ensure your gutter guards are properly removed allowing you to clean them and ensure your entire gutter system is functioning as they should. So don’t put it off any longer! Grab your tools and get those gutter guards cleaned today!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *