What Needs To Be Done?
Your gutters need to be cleaned out on a regular basis.
Why Do It?
Clogged gutters can cause all kinds of issues with your home. Here are a few common examples:
Water damage: Properly functioning gutters direct water away from the structure of your home. But, clogged gutters can cause water to collect around your foundation and, as a result, seep into your basement.
Loosened gutters: The Association for Homeowners Across America says that the weight of water, twigs and other debris can loosen gutters and cause them to pull away from their attachments.
Rodents: Clogged gutters can become an inviting home to carpenter ants, mosquitoes and even rodents. And, if these pests are living in your gutters, there’s a chance they’ll make their way into your home.
How To Do It:
Since cleaning your gutters requires you to get on a ladder, it’s always safest to leave this job to a licensed professional. There are many companies that specialize in gutter cleaning, and professionals have the knowledge and training to safely clean your gutters and downspouts, as well as checking for and repairing misalignment, leaks or damage.
But, if you do decide to clean your gutters yourself, always remember to put safety first. Here’s what you need:
- Gloves: Hand protection is critical due to possible sharp objects in the gutter.
- Dust mask: Dried, clogged gutters will be very dusty; you don’t want to breathe this dust.
- Safety goggles: Debris may fly back at you when cleaning, so wearing safety goggles is a must.
- Ladder: A ladder is needed to access the gutters. (And you should always have someone nearby to hold the ladder.)
- Garden trowel: It is used to scoop out the debris
Safely set up the ladder to access your gutter. Put on the gloves, dust mask and safety goggles. Begin scooping out the debris with the garden trowel. Some debris may be stuck, and it will take some effort to remove it. Be careful not to damage the gutter. After the debris is removed, use a garden hose to wash out the remaining dirt.