Clogged gutters can cause issues like roof damage, foundation erosion, mosquito infestation, and more. Hiring a professional to repair these problems can be costly. Taking the time to thoroughly clean your gutters twice a year will save you a lot of headaches. Follow these six easy steps to maintain clean gutters year-round.
Step #1: Keep the Weather in Mind When you Clean Gutters
Check the weather forecast before cleaning your gutters. The best time to clean your gutters is after several days of dry weather. Roof debris is heavier and more difficult to remove when wet. Cleaning gutters during the driest seasons makes the task easier.
Step #2: Assemble the Right Equipment and Tools
Gather the right tools and wear appropriate gear when you clean gutters for the best results. Wear clothes and safety gear that cover your body and offer full protection, like a long-sleeved top, work pants, gloves, and safety glasses. Helpful tools for removing debris include a trowel, two buckets, s-hooks, a ladder, and a garden hose with a nozzle.
Step #3: Place Your Ladder Securely When you Clean Gutters
Lower the risk of accidents by making sure your ladder is well-supported. Using a step ladder is not recommended, as the ladder is the most secure when leaning against the house. Depending on the size of your house, use a straight or extension ladder to clean your gutters.
Step #4: The Two-Bucket Technique
Keep two buckets on hand for when you clean gutters. Use one bucket for gathering debris and the other for holding your tools. Keeping tools inside your pockets could throw you off balance, possibly resulting in injuries. Protect yourself by carrying buckets up one at a time and attaching them to the ladder using hooks.
Step #5: Start Cleaning Your Gutters
Work your way from the opening of the downspout to the edge of the gutter, removing debris along the way and placing it in a bucket. Use a trowel for smaller debris and compacted waste. Wear a pair of work gloves for protection.
Step #6: Flush Out Remaining Debris with Water
Once the large pieces of debris are out the way, flush out what’s remaining with a garden hose. If the water drains slowly or not at all, use the strongest setting on your nozzle to get rid of whatever is clogging your gutters.
Maintaining Clean Gutters Doesn’t Have to be Difficult
Maintaining clean gutters is less of a challenge when you do it at least twice a year. If a large storm happens or if you live in a densely wooded area, you may need to clean them more frequently. Following the six steps above will keep your gutter system flowing freely.