Fall is the perfect time to get a few home maintenance tasks done. One that seems to intimidate people (but needs to get done) is cleaning the gutters. You should clean your gutters at least one time a year, and more if you have a lot of trees on your property.
Of course, you could hire a professional service for anywhere between $50 and $250, but you shouldn’t feel scared to take care of the task on your own. There are a few key things to keep in mind, though:
- Dress appropriately. Wear long sleeves and pants, gloves, non-slip shoes, and perhaps a face mask, if you are prone to seasonal allergies.
- Use your ladder safely. Read our guide from earlier this month (INSERT LINK) on how to use your ladder in the safest way possible. Think about investing in standoff stabilizers to help protect the gutter from being damaged.
- Know your roof. If your roof has a very low pitch, it may be easier and safer to work from the roof, rather than a ladder. That being said, only do this if your are very comfortable being on the roof, and never clean when the roof is wet or it is windy.
- Use a scoop. While you could clear everything with your hand, a small shovel will save you time and frustration. You don’t have to get fancy – a kid’s sand shovel or garden shovel will work just fine.
- Think about your lawn. Throwing dirt and dead leaves directly on your grass can cause brown spots and makes it tough to clean up later. Get a tarp or lawn garbage bags for any debris you remove, and keep your lawn looking great.
- Flush it out. After you remove debris, rinse the gutters and rain spout using your garden hose. This will not only help ensure a clear gutter system, but also may point out any potential cracks or holes in the material.
This fall we hope you find time for all those little home tasks that tend to get overlooked – it just may save you money and frustration in the long run.