Cleaning Your Gutters

fall rakeGutters divert rain away from your home and are its first line of defence against water damage.  During autumn, however, leaves, twigs and other debris can clog your gutters and cause significant damage to your home.

When your gutters are obstructed, you may start to notice overflows.  And, if you don’t act quickly, water that can’t drain could seep into your home’s foundation or walls.  This can cause major structural damage that often goes unnoticed until it’s too late – making proper gutter maintenance all the more important.

While the amount of foliage in your yard can impact how often you clean your gutters, it should be done at least once a year and preferable both in the autumn and spring.  You should never attempt to clean your gutters in slippery, windy or icy conditions.

Before you clean your gutters, make sure you have the right tools for the job, including a functional and safe ladder, garden trowel, dust mask, gloves and eye protection.  Use the ladder to reach the gutters and dislodge any debris within arm’s reach; then, descend the ladder and move it in order to clean the next section of your gutters.

Don’t overreach or attempt to move the ladder while you are still on it.  After you’ve removed all noticeable debris, use a garden hose to clear out the remaining dust and to test for any additional obstructions.

Since a ladder is needed to clean out debris, you may want to hire a roofing professional, who can also identify any leaks, damage or misalignment in your gutter system.

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