How a homeowner can clean their gutters in a safe way
Clogged gutters, especially in the winter, can be like a ticking time bomb. They can cause ice dams that can damage your roof, walls, floor, and insulation, or they can get too heavy and pull loose, which can hurt anyone who gets caught in their path. Cleaning your gutters is important to avoid expensive problems and things that could kill you. They should be cleaned twice a year, preferably in April and October, when trees are in bloom or dropping their leaves.
Before you start this job, though, you should learn safe ways to clean gutters so you don’t hurt yourself, fall off the ladder, or get your fingers caught in corners. If you do it wrong and have to pay someone else to fix it, it could end up costing you even more.
How to Safely Clean Gutters – Our Guide
One of the most important things you can do to clean gutters safely is to wear the right clothes and safety gear for the job. Avoid wearing clothes that don’t fit well, like pants and sleeves that are too long, and shoes that don’t have enough grip. You could lose your balance and fall off the ladder if these got caught in the gutters or under your feet. Safety gear like work gloves, safety goggles, and dust masks will make you less likely to get hurt and make it easier for you to do your job.
Using ladder safety when you clean your gutters is another important safety measure. You can do this by telling everyone else at home that you will be using the ladder to clean the gutters. This way, they won’t play around it or open windows near it, which could cause you to fall or the ladder to fall on them. You should also make sure that the ladder you are using is safe and sturdy, has no flaws like loose rungs, and that all of its parts are tightened securely. For gutters on a single-story building, a four-legged step ladder is best. For gutters on taller buildings, an extension ladder is better.
You can’t clean gutters in a safe way if you use your hands to dig through the debris instead of a scoop or trowel. Plastic trowels are perfect because they are strong enough to scoop out any kind of trash without damaging the gutter. It would also be smart to clean with a friend, since you might need someone to hold the ladder steady and watch out for you if you fall. Some people attach a bucket to the ladder so they can drop the trash into it. This can be dangerous because a bucket can cause you to trip or fall off the ladder. It’s much safer to put the trash can on the ground below you.
To clean the gutters, you just have to take off the covers, scoop out the trash, flush the gutters with water, and make sure the water flows properly. Some people use a leaf blower instead of a hose, but this might not get all the debris out. You should also make sure the downspouts are clear of anything that could cause a clog by spraying down the spout at high pressure. If this doesn’t work, you can use a hose to move the clog or stick something up the spout. If you follow the right steps, even a first-time gutter cleaner can do it safely.
If you don’t like doing things yourself, you can always hire us to do them. Get a free online quote here.