Get ready for rain and snow by cleaning out your home's gutters. Here are simple and easy tips to clean out your gutters before a storm hits.
Prior to cleaning out your home's gutters, inspect them for any damages. The best way to go about this is to first scoop out any leaves and debris that are left in the gutters. Using a ladder, old clothes and work gloves, pull out anything that could potentially block your view using a gutter scoop purchased at the local hardware store. Put debris in a bag that is nearby or in a wheelbarrow to use as compost in your garden.
- Take note of any mildew or mud that could sag down your gutter, causing maintenance issues in the future.
- Ensure that all spikes are properly in place and nothing is loose.
- Look for leaks, holes and cracked caulking. If any of these items are showing damage, fix them immediately to guarantee further damage will not come your way later in the season.
- Check your downspout. If this is clogged, water will not drain properly when washing the gutters or when a heavy rain or snow falls into them. Also, confirm that all rivets are in place. If they are loose, tighten them with a rivet gun or replace them to avoid further damage.
Wash your gutters using a pressure washer and assistance from another member of the household. Pull the pressure washer up to the roof and spray a few inches away from the gutter. Avoid directly spraying onto your roof's shingles — instead, spray at a 45-degree angle to safeguard them from damage.
- Watch for leaks. If you didn't see any upon your inspection, a small (or large) leak may present itself when getting sprayed on.
- Spray towards the downspout. Since you want any excess debris that you missed to go down the drain, it is best to direct the water this way. If your downspout does not lead into the street, disconnect it to avoid any damage underneath your home.
Gutter maintenance is extremely important to the exterior of your home. Guarantee home safety by cleaning out your gutters at least three times a year. We recommend doing so at the end of each season to avoid any seasonal weather damage.
- Rake roof leaves. By raking your leaves off of your roof, it is less likely that they will go into your gutter and clog them.
- Invest in gutter guards. Gutter guards act as a shield to prevent larger pieces of debris from falling into the gutter. With holes, the gutter still catches any excess rain water or snow melt from going down the exterior of your home, but it is less likely to clog up. With a gutter guard, you can cut your gutter maintenance nearly in half.
- New gutters. Depending on the age of your home, it may be time to invest in new gutters. Newer models are made with rust prevention and other safeguards to create a high longevity for gutters.
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