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On most homes, a gutter is an essential component to remove water efficiently away from the house. Without them, your house is subject to potential foundation damage and basement flooding.
However, to work efficiently, gutter cleaning is crucial. Leaves, sticks and other debris can build up within the gutter, changing the flow of water to potentially damage your roof or exterior walls. Gutters should be cleaned regularly. To see how you can do this yourself, see a few tips below.
To ensure proper function, a gutter cleaning service can help. Contact a gutter pro today for up to four quotes from contractors in your area, for free.
Gutter Cleaning Cost
It’s important to maintain your gutters regularly to ensure they work to remove rainwater away from the home. A clogged gutter can cause leaks or flooding within the home and can be expensive to repair. To save your wallet, it’s a good idea to invest in gutter cleaning. The average cost to clean gutters is $145 with most homeowners spending between $112 and $152. Majority of the cost comes from labor. If you choose to DIY, you can save money, however, there are some risks associated.
DIY Gutter Cleaning
Many homeowners choose to make gutter cleaning a DIY project. For smaller heights, this is certainly an option, but for higher roofs, contacting a gutter pro is recommended. Ladder safety is extremely important when preparing for your gutter clearing project. Your ladder should easily reach the gutter and able to be moved as your project. Reaching to clean your gutter can result in a dangerous fall. Make sure to follow the 4 to one rule: for every 4' to climb, move the base 1' away from the wall. You’ll also want to ensure the ladder is firmly on the ground, avoiding any slopes or unlevel areas.
Protection is also key when planning your DIY gutter cleaning project. While you may expect plenty of leaves in your gutter, you might not know what other objects are lurking in there. Gloves and protective eyewear will come in handy here to protect you from debris and water.
Gutter Cleaning Tools
- Protective Eyewear
- Rope or Cord
- Plastic Gutter Scoop
Step 1: Prepare Your Tools
Once you have all your materials together, it’s time to get to work. Avoid filling your yard with gutter debris by attaching the bucket to the ladder with a rope or cord. You can easily place the debris into the bucket without dirtying the rest of your yard.
Ensure a safe spot for your ladder, remembering that you should have three points of contact at all times with the ladder. Carry your plastic gutter scoop up with you and get to work!
Step 2: Begin To Remove Debris
Don’t rush the debris removal. Carefully use your plastic gutter scoop to remove leaves, twigs, dirt and anything else that may be clogging up your gutters. Keep an eye out as you go for any holes or damage to your gutter. You will want to get this repaired as soon as possible.
In the rare event you find an animal or nest in your gutter or downspout, it’s recommended to contact an animal control pro who can help safely remove the animal.
Step 3: Flush Gutters & Downspouts
When you’ve removed all the large debris, you’ll want to flush your gutters to eliminate any extra debris. Start from one end and use the highest pressure available on your nozzle. Work the water down the length of the gutter.
Eliminate any debris that has fallen in or around your downspout. To ensure your gutters are functioning properly, do one final flush of water to ensure that it flows properly through the gutter and out the downspout. If you see any holes or leaks, it’s important to get them repaired. The average cost to repair a gutter or downspout is $315, with most homeowners spending between $202 and $322.
Preventing Gutter Clogs
Even if you clean your gutters regularly, you might find yourself with frequent gutter clogs. To eliminate some of the hard work, you can invest in a gutter guard system. This system is a great way to filter out unwanted leaves, twigs and other items that can cause problems in your gutter. These are easy to install yourself, utilizing an ultra-fine mesh to only let water in. While the system is fairly low-maintenance, if for some reason there is a clog, this can be a challenge to remove.
Costs for gutter guards can vary based on how complex you want your system to be. At the lower end, a gutter guard costs $3 per 3' section. For more advanced systems, the maximum cost is about $22 per foot.
Gutters are an essential part of any home to keep is safe and dry. But they do require proper care to maintain their function. Schedule a regular cleaning to keep them working their best!
Looking for more ways to make the most of your gutters? Read Gutter Protection Breakdown for more tips.