Abstract Cleaning work of road gutter entry was surveyed in terms of gutter entry configuration, debris type and feature in the old town of Xi'an city, and the collected data in one year were analyzed statistically to improve debris cleaning and intercepting effectiveness of road gutter entry and reduce cleaning workload. At first, the development, application, advantages and disadvantages of domestic and foreign rainwater road gutter entry filters were reviewed. According to the existing popular gutter entry structure in Xi′an city and a formula for estimating rainstorm flow rate, an initial filter with sieve and grid was designed. Then, specific structures and materials were compared and selected, and field tests were followed. Eventually, a basket filter that is applicable to the drainage system of Xi'an city was determined. Based on application trials, this kind of filter can intercept debris into the basket effectively without impaired drain function. When the gutter entries are being cleaned, the height of residual debris in the gutter well is reduced to less than 50 mm from 150 mm before filter installation(sieve with 10 mm diameter holes, grid with 10 mm spacing). Obviously, when the cleaning measures remain unchanged, the frequency of cleaning should be reduced, accordingly, the time interval between cleanings will be extended.