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Gutter cleaning

Gutters are very important in keeping your home protected. During rain there are many chances for water to penetrate your home’s roof, windows, siding and doors as well as the foundation itself. In order to protect your home from damage due to rain, snow or other natural elements you must keep your gutters and downspouts clean and cleared of leaves and other debris.

If your gutters and downspouts are not kept clean from obtrusions your drain outlets will ultimately dam up and water will sit in your gutters. This can cause your gutters to back up or overflow and could cause them to eventually come loose from their mounts. Water standing in your gutters can cause metal materials to rust and wood gutters to eventually rot.

There are many ways in which you can keep your gutters free of debris. You could hire a professional gutter cleaning service,or you could also learn how to clean your own gutters . Many people have leaf-catching systems installed but normally these need to be cleaned out as well. If you do plan to purchase a leaf-catching system be sure that you can easily remove it for cleaning.

You should plan to clean your gutters at least twice each year. Of course this also depends on where you live. If your roof is located directly beneath trees then you may have to clean them more often. Keep in mind that if your roof is higher than one story or if you are unsure of doing this yourself safely, then you are better off to hire a professional.

To begin you should choose a sturdy ladder. The ladder should be placed on a firm and level base. You may find that it is easier to use a tall stepladder than an extension ladder. If you are using an extension ladder then be sure to protect your gutters against the leaning ladder by inserting a short 2-by-4 inside the gutter. You should stand with your hips between the rails, never leaning over the sides and never standing on the top two rungs of the ladder.

Wear heavy work gloves when you are cleaning your gutters. You may find screw points or other sharp pieces sticking out so be sure that you are protecting your hands. Wear safety goggles to protect your eyes as well. This is particularly important if you are planning to use a leaf blower to clean out the gutters.

If your roof has a low pitch then you may find that it is much easier to work from there. Only plan to do so if you are comfortable being on the roof and if you are sure that it is completely safe. If you are going on the roof then be sure to wear appropriate shoes that have non-slip soles and do not lean over the edge.

 


To clean your gutters

 
1) Scoop out any loose debris
Begin at the drain outlet at the gutter’s lowest end. Using a narrow garden trowel, scoop out any loose debris working away from the drain outlet. If the debris is damp it is much easier to scoop out.


 
2) Blow out debris with a hose
Using a water hose with a high-pressure nozzle, you can blow out each gutter length. Work toward the drain outlet. Keep in mind that this can be a very messy job. Take care not to blow mud and other debris on your siding and windows. You can use a stiff scrub brush if you need to break loose dirt and other debris that may be encrusted into the gutter.

 

 
3) Clear out any obstructions
When you are flushing out your gutters with the hose, check to make sure that the water is flowing freely. If not then try flushing the debris down your drainpipes with the hose. You can also use a plumbing snake to clean out the debris from the bottom if the hose is not doing the job.


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David Ness Jr. Construction does Roof replacement, Roofing, Rubber Roofing/ Repair, vinyl Siding, Decks, Gutters, gutter cleaning in Massachusetts & Rhode Island

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