Do you like cleaning your gutters? Yeah, we thought as much; few people are ecstatic at the thought of this particular chore. Getting twigs, leaves, and various other debris out of your gutters isn’t anyone’s ideal Sunday morning. However, even though it’s not fun, it’s the quintessential task of a homeowner—and an essential aspect of home maintenance.
There’s a reason why most homeowners are careful not to put off this specific task. If you ignore clogged gutters, they can lead to all sorts of nasty issues—like expensive damage to your landscaping, façade, foundation, walls, and roof.
And don’t despair — you can always rely on gutter cleaning experts to do it for you. However, if you decide to do it yourself, here are a few tips to make this arduous process easier.
Get Some Help
Naturally, the easiest way to clean your gutters is to hire someone else to do it. If you want to save money or get some work around the house done yourself, keep this in mind—you still don’t have to do it alone.
There are plenty of chores that you can easily handle on your own. However, gutter cleaning is definitely not one of them. So, get someone to help you, whoever wants to do it from your household. A friend, a spouse, a teenager, a partner—pretty much anyone will be of some use.
They can move the tarp, hand you the necessary tools, keep your ladder steady, or just stay as a pair of watchful eyes in case anything goes wrong. They don’t have to climb up to the gutters themselves; remember, ladders and roofs are generally dangerous places to hang out, regardless of how steady or careful you think you can be. So, get someone trustworthy to stay nearby and help before you start climbing.
Stick To A Schedule
Unfortunately, you can’t just clean your gutters once and call it quits. They tend to fill up with random debris over time—depending on your surroundings and the local climate, sometimes quicker than you think. On average, you should regularly clean your gutters twice a year.
If you want to be as efficient as possible, clean them once around the end of summer—once the autumn leaves start falling, everything will become much harder to remove. And after that, let the leaves fall and clean the gutters once again at the beginning of spring—that way, you’ll deal with general debris and fallen leaves separately instead of treating it all as one unmanageable cleaning job.
Of course, this is only a rough estimate—depending on the specifics of your home and location, you may need to do it more frequently. For example, some people whose houses are surrounded by trees clean their gutters more often—up to six times yearly. On the other hand, the opposite is true if you live in an arid or desert area; if you don’t have any trees nearby, you may only need to clean out the gutters once each year to remove the dirt and sand.
Whatever schedule you decide to follow, ensure you can stick to it. Create reminders on your phone’s calendar, which will fire off a few days in advance—it’s easy to forget chores when they’re months and seasons apart, and phone alarms are a neat way to avoid that.
Consider Gutter Covers or Guards
These days, you can find plenty of gutter covers and guards. Many of these products do an excellent job of stopping debris from ever entering your gutters—significantly reducing the amount of work you need to do while cleaning them. They’re especially effective against giant sticks and other large chunks of debris that would otherwise create clogs.
If you want a less expensive solution for your gutter problems, you can also find smaller guards that don’t cover the whole gutters but the downspout entrance instead. They won’t reduce the amount of debris in your gutters as much, but they’ll ensure zero clogging in the downspout.
Water Is Your Friend
So, considering all of the above—how can you clean your gutters easily, safely, and without much effort in practice? Here’s an easy hack: get a pressure washer. You’ll be amazed at how easily pressurized water can clear away clogged gutters.
However, it would help if you were precise and careful. Even with a cheaper, weaker pressure washer, you never want to go above low settings. Otherwise, you risk damaging or denting your gutters. And before you use the pressure washer, check the gutters in detail to ensure there are no loose screws; they’ll easily break under so much pressure.
In the end, however, there’s only one surefire way of clearing out your gutters quickly and safely; hiring professionals to do it right. Ultimately, you save more money by not risking your safety and the safety of your loved ones by climbing on tall ladders near the roof. There’s a reason why people build entire careers around gutter maintenance—it’s stuff best left to the pros.