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The Dangers of Pine Needles in Your Gutter System

Pinecones On Top of Gutter Guard System - K-Guard Heartland

There’s nothing quite like fall here in the Heartland: we have beautiful foliage, Chiefs football, and comfortable temperatures. Now that we’re well into autumn, you’ve probably had to sweep or rake leaves from your entryways, yard, and driveway. While leaves are a fall favorite, pine needles also shed each fall, quickly covering our cars, patios, and the roads.

Pines shed their needles each fall, usually in September and October. While some pines don’t shed annually, The Heartland is home to many types of pines, most of which shed. Pine needles find their way into every nook and cranny of our homes, including half-round gutter systems and gutters with screens and filters. Pine needles threaten gutter systems in many ways. Continue reading to learn the dangers of pine needles in your gutter system as well as some solutions.


Why are Pine Needles a Danger to My Gutter System?

As previously mentioned, most pine trees shed their needles in the fall, so odds are you’ve already seen them starting to fall and collect on most surfaces. They quickly cover walking trails, roads, vehicles, roofs, and gutters. 

While they’re thin and don’t look like they’d harm a gutter system, they multiply quickly and can cause serious damage. If you have half-round gutters or open-top gutters, then pine needles will inevitably find their way into your gutters. Pine needles don’t move through a gutter system easily, so once they land inside the gutter they usually stay until removed by hand. 

So how do these pesky needles threaten gutter systems? For one, if they’re left to collect all season long, they’ll most likely create a clog inside the gutters and downspouts, impeding water flow. A clogged gutter means water isn’t able to flow freely throughout the system, forcing water to spill over the gutters and around the home’s foundation, garden beds, and walkways. Water that’s left to sit inside of the gutter could cause damage to the roof, soffit and fascia boards, and the home’s siding.

Even if you have a gutter screen or gutter filter installed, pine needles will still cause issues. They can keep large debris like sticks and large leaves out, but they don’t keep pine needles out. Screens and filters have small openings that can act as a “shelf,” allowing debris to land and sit on top of the screen or filter. Pine needles can land vertically and may get stuck in the small openings of gutter filters. As a result, water can’t enter the gutter or flow freely with debris on top of the filter or lodged inside those small openings.


How Can I Keep Pine Needles Out of My Gutter System?

Pine needles can cause costly damage to a home if left to collect inside a gutter system. Luckily you can take some measures to keep them out of your gutter system. First, ensure that you deep clean your gutter system at least twice a year or seasonally. If you have trees close to the roofline, you’ll want to clean them more often to remove debris like leaves, pine needles, and twigs. Regularly cleaning your gutters will reduce the chance of clogs and damage caused by overflowing or sagging gutters.

Another preventative measure is to keep all trees near your roofline, especially pines, pruned year-round. Hiring an arborist or professional tree pruning service can keep pine trees trimmed so they’re not hanging over your home’s roof and dropping pine needles directly into your gutters.

Cleaning your gutters and pruning pine trees will help reduce the number of pine needles in the gutters, however, they’re temporary fixes that need to be performed often. Cleaning gutters is a timely chore, and pruning trees can get costly and needs to be done often to keep up with new growth each spring and summer. The only permanent solution to keeping pine needles out of your gutter system is to install the K-Guard System.

Our gutter product is the only solution to keeping all debris, including pine needles, out of your gutters for good. Below are just some of the many benefits of installing the K-Guard Leaf Free Gutter System:

  • The curved hood allows pine needles and other debris to slide off
  • Only water can enter the gutters
  • Eliminates the chance for clogs
  • Backed by three-lifetime warranties
  • Lasts for the life of the home

If you’re ready to say goodbye to cleaning pine needles from your gutter system, contact our team today to schedule your free estimate for installing the K-Guard System. Our expertly trained staff will guide you through the entire process from scheduling your free estimate to the gutter installation process. We offer our gutter installation service to homeowners across both Missouri and Kansas including, but not limited to, the following locations:


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