Cleaning Your Gutters
Gutters are an essential component of a home because they protect your property from water damage. Keeping your gutters clean is essential for both safety and aesthetics. It’s important to clean your gutters regularly to keep them free of debris and blockages. Here are some easy steps you can follow, so you can take care of this important home maintenance task.
Prepare to Clean Your Gutters
Before you begin cleaning your gutters, make sure you’re wearing safety gear, such as protective eyewear and gloves. You will need the following tools:
- Extendable ladder
- Garden hose
- Pressure washer (optional, but great to have!)
- Ladder stabilizer
- Garden trowel
- Safety Glasses
When setting up your ladder on the ground and climbing it, follow all safety instructions. Look for flat, level ground on which to set the ladder to clean gutters. Using a ladder stabilizer will keep you safe and protect your gutters from being damaged from the ladder leaning on them. A helper to spot you while you’re on the ladder is even better! Be sure that you can maintain solid footing while also accessing the gutter.
Start Cleaning Your Home Gutters by Scooping Debris
Work your way around the gutters, removing large debris like sticks and tree bark with gloved hands before scooping out the remaining dirt and waste with a garden trowel. Drop the debris in a bucket or on a plastic tarp on the ground beneath you so it doesn’t go all over your lawn.
Run Water Through the Gutters to Rinse
After the gutters have been cleared, run some water through to wash away any remaining debris. You may use a garden hose or a pressure washer for this step. Start at the opposite end of the downspout, and push any remaining debris down through it.
Use a firm brush to remove any stubborn dirt. If water doesn’t flow smoothly, there’s likely a blockage that you will need to address. Also, look at your gutters while running the water to identify any leaks or areas where water is falling through.
Inspect the Downspouts
Downspouts are prone to blockages because of their curvature. Check the downspout to ensure that all of the water flows through as you’re flushing the gutters. If the water doesn’t flow, the downspout is likely blocked.
Dislodge any stubborn debris with a strong stream from your hose. If that doesn’t work, use a plumber’s snake. Insert the end of the snake into the downspout until you encounter resistance. Then crank the handle and push the snake to clear out the blockage.
Clean-Up the Mess or Repair Leaking Gutters
Once you’ve cleaned out your gutters and checked them for damage, dispose of the debris you collected in the bucket and tarp. If any of your gutters are leaking, fix them by patching up the leaking areas or using sealant to close gaps where water has leaked.