The Best way to clean Gutters is what homeowners are looking for every Fall (not everyone knows how to clean a gutter). The effects of having clogged gutters could become bad for your home, when heavy, it can pull away from the eave and the water runs down into the windows, eave and sidings of your home thus damaging your home. It can work its way into your home and damage ceilings, floorings and other items that the water or mold can get to. But not to worry, to save you time and money on any gutter cleaning tools, we’ll tell you the step by step guide on the best way to clean gutters.
Step 1: Gather Materials
There are many available materials in the market, what I shall be posting here is the basic ways to save you money on tools (I will also post some tools that will speed up certain methods here on the bottom of the post). Here are the list of basic materials for gutter cleaning:
- Steady Ladder
- Garden Hose with Nozzle
- Gutter Scooper
- Rubber Gloves (The ones you use to wash dishes or garder gloves)
- Trash Bags
- Bucket (2 – 3 gallons with handle)
I can’t stress the importance of a steady ladder, the last thing you want is to get really bad injuries plus damages to your home by not using a proper ladder. Make sure to check the ladder before using. Gutter Scooper is readily available in the market, but if you don’t want to purchase, we suggest cutting a milk plastic jar into half and using it as a scoop. As for the bucket, what you want is to be able to hang it on so your hands are free to work on the gutters (makes it an easy way to clean gutters, trust me). You need to cut the handle in the center with a wire cutter and use a pliers to bend both sides to make hooks (same direction) to hook it on the gutter while you clean.
Step 2: Ladder Placement
Always, always always think of safety first, the most dangerous part of the whole process is the height in which you have to do the cleaning. So to have a safe way to clean gutters, ladder placement must be well thought of. Placing a ladder is tricky when cleaning gutters, the placement of the ladder should allow you to:
- see the gutters easily
- be able to free your hands (maintaining balance)
- be able to hook your bucket close to you
Do make sure that you don’t lean the ladder on aluminum or resin gutters as it can cause dents or damages which could give you more problems than just a clogged gutter and DO NOT overreach to the sides. Make sure to use ladder mitts or stabilizers to minimize movements. Remember the best way to clean gutters is to be able to clean it safely.
Step 3: The Bucket
The bucket should be placed beside you and should be very easy to reach. It is hanged thru the gutters with the make hooks that you made from the handles. When the bucket gets full, go down and throw it in the trash bag and go back up. When it is really dirty, you might have to make a couple up and down trips.
Step 4: Cleaning the Gutters
Start scooping the gutter, don’t worry about the small debris left behind as you’ll be flushing it using the hose (final step). This may take a while as you might need to go up and down when the bucket is full or moving to another position.
Step 5: Check the Downspouts
After you’ve cleaned the gutters, it’s time to check the downspouts for any possible blockages. Use the garden hose and spray the water straight down the downspout. Two things can happen, if he water comes out of the bottom quickly then it’s clear. But if the water comes out slower, try using more water pressure to flush it out. If it’s still not clear then you’ll have to remove the elbow (top of gutter) and check for blockages and when it’s clean try the test again to be sure.
Step 6: Spray the Remaining Debris
Go back up and check on the gutters for any small debris left after you’ve scooped. Spray it using the garden hose towards the downspout and it should flow down easily.
Some Gutter Cleaning Tools that can help you get thru the process faster:
- Leaf Blower - Some use leaf blowers to remove the leaves and other debris from the gutter. The only problem is cleaning up after all the blowing, but, on the upside, you maybe able to skip going up (good for those scared of heights). Check out this website where he made the easiest way to clean gutters.
- Pressure Washer - When downspouts get clogged, sometimes all it takes is pressure. The garden hose can’t always provide that (especially when it’s a big clog) so a pressure washer could help you solve the problem faster. Using water pressure it should be able to wash down any blockage that it encounters.
- Electric Gutter Cleaning Robot – There is iRobot sold at Amazon which blasts itself thru the debris or clogs cleaning it via a remote hence stopping you from overreaching.
How do you make it easy for yourself to clean the gutters?
Prevention is better than cure, there are plenty of equipments out there to prevent blockages. You can install Gutter screens (can stop large debris from entering), brushes (stop leaves while allowing water to get thru), and caps (covers your gutters to stop any debris from entering) depending on your budget and how much you hate cleaning the gutters. At the end of the day, the best way to clean gutters depends on how much are you willing to spend (you can buy tools, equipments or outsource the job to someone else).