How to clean and maintain your gutters
Owning a house is all fun and games until you know how much it takes to maintain it. One pivotal part of your home that you need to be conscious of is the gutters. These are essential for any home as they help keep water away from the foundation of your home and protect your house’s structure. By keeping an eye on your gutters and cleaning them regularly, you can extend the durability of not only your roof but also avoid any water damage to your home. Remember, a clean gutter is a well-functioning gutter so take care of this mostly forgotten hero.
Before cleaning your gutters, you have to inspect them first and know what you are dealing with. Most gutters have never been cleaned, so I assume they will be in bad shape but don’t worry as this is easily fixed. Look for any problem areas and mark them with masking tape so that you won’t forget about them. Don’t say you’ll remember where they are; take out five minutes to mark them to avoid any future trouble. While inspecting them, look for signs of corrosion, leaking joints, and loose, bent or missing hangers.
Steps to clean your gutter:
1. Get a good and sturdy ladder. You’ll be needing it for the majority of this job. Never place your ladder on an uneven or rocky area; find a sturdy and flat surface that will anchor both you and the ladder in place. Don’t try to Tarzan this task; you’ll either hurt yourself or you’ll damage the gutters further. Also, it is better to have someone else around in case anything happens. After all, prevention is better than a cure.
2. Dress for the job. Cleaning gutter can be a dirty job, so I advise that you cover up. Put on an old long-sleeve shirt, pants, rubber gloves and boots.
3. Equipment. This is where the hard work begins; remove all the accumulated gunk from your gutters using a small plastic scoop. It goes into all the nooks and crannies and works wonders to clean them. You can easily find gutter scoops from your local hardware store or Amazon; believe me, having one will make your life 10 times easier. If you have children and don’t want to spend money, a sandbox shovel does the job too. You can even use an old rubber spatula to do this and you won’t run the risk of damaging your gutter. If you are tech-savvy and have some money to spare, then I recommend buying a gutter cleaning robot that will do the job for you. Yes, we are doomed – the machine Gods have already taken over, but at least they are making our lives easier.
4. Use a tarp. This will protect your lawn, avoid any accidents and won’t ruin your landscape. By doing this, you are prepping a space where all the gunk will go, and this makes cleaning up afterward easier.
5. Use a hose. After you are done removing all the detritus from your gutter, use your handy-dandy garden hose to flush out all the sediment that has amassed in your gutters and downspouts over time. This not only clears out the remaining debris but also shows you if there are any leaks in them.
6. Check for any needed repairs. After finishing the 5 first steps, you are pretty much done with it. If you see that your gutter is damaged severely, I would advise you to call a professional to fix it. You can, of course, MacGyver your way through it, but you’ll be doing more damage than good. Better leave this part to a professional.
Get your mind out of the gutter and put your hands in it instead. Once you get into it, gutter cleaning is not that bad or complicated; it just demands some time and patience. Remember to check and clean your gutters bi-annually to keep them in good shape. Sound off in the comments section below and tell us if you are gonna clean your gutters using this system.