Northeast Ohio is experiencing a bumper crop of spring debris, including oak catkins and maple seeds, destined to clog the area’s uncovered covers

Gutter Boys Installer With Drill
Surprisingly, the best way to clean your gutters is not to clean them at all. Cover them instead.

By Mitch Allen

Whether you call them curly Qs or cat tails, the pollen-filled catkins that fall from oak trees are on their way. So are maple seeds, whether you call them spinners, whirly-birds or helicopters. And this year, look for a bumper crop.

“The past couple of years have been mild for maple seeds, but not this year,” says Anthony Alberino, founder of The Gutter Boys. “They’re coming down by the millions.”

When we think of gutter cleaning, many of us think of fall leaves. But springtime can be even more troubling. In addition to oak catkins and maple seeds, flower pods and petals are also excellent cloggers, along with a host of other spring debris that collects in gutters. And when clogged gutters overflow, the result can be much worse than stained siding and washed-away mulch. All that water that a proper gutter system normally carries away from your home can cause flooded basements and damaged foundations. In addition, water in your gutters is the ideal breeding ground for mosquitoes.

“Gutter cleaning is easily a twice-a-year job if not three times,” Anthony says. “It depends on which species of trees are in your yard and when they do their thing.”

Surprisingly, the best way to clean your gutters is not to clean them at all. Cover them instead.

Dirty, Dangerous Work
“Gutter cleaning is a dirty and dangerous job that the average homeowner should not attempt,” Anthony cautions. “Although our technicians are well-trained, experienced professionals, we, too, have to be extremely careful up on the ladder. It’s much safer to simply cover your gutters and end gutter cleaning for everybody forever.”

Oak catkins (above left)—also known as curly Qs and cat tails—and maple seeds (right)—often called spinners, whirly-birds or helicopters.

The Top-Rated Gutter Cover
NCR Consumer Advocacy Group has ranked The Gutter Boys’ Valor Gutter Guards number one in all categories it measured: value, effectiveness, industry reputation, strength, water throughput, durability and “overall.” And not only is The Gutter Boys the exclusive dealer for Valor in Northeast Ohio, they were the number one Valor dealer in the U.S. in 2021, installing more than 10 miles of the top-ranked product.

• A high-flow, stainless steel micro-mesh that lets water in but keeps debris out. This effect is enhanced because the mesh features a raised S-curve that increases the surface area, allowing for the self-shedding of debris.
• A vertical louvered frame improves drainage so—unlike horizontal frames—it cannot clog with moss or algae.
• The light-weight, aluminum frame won’t warp and doesn’t add extra weight.
• The cover is attached to the fascia, not the shingles, so it can’t void your roof warranty. This also adds structural integrity when covered in heavy ice. Plus, it’s attached with stainless steel screws that don’t rust.
• A fully-transferrable, lifetime warranty.

Gutter Repair, Too
In addition to covering gutters, The Gutter Boys also repair them, including dented, broken or damaged gutters as well as hanging, fallen or missing downspouts.

“With our component replacement system, we can replace just the damaged section without replacing the entire system,” Anthony explains. “And many homeowners are wisely opting for 6-inch gutters instead of the standard 5-inch, and 4x5-inch downspouts instead of 3x4. These larger gutter systems can handle a significantly larger volume of water.”

The Gutter Boys is headquartered at 1090 West Bagley Road, in Berea. They have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, and are bonded and insured. Call 440-671-7657 to schedule a free on-site consultation and estimate, or visit for more information. They also offer 12 months same-as-cash financing.