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How Often Should You Clean Your Gutters?

By Carrie Dixon, Blog Editor

Gutters clogged with leavesPeople don’t always think about cleaning their gutters until a problem crops up. You may find that the gutters are clogged with leaves, which leads to a blockage and an inability for water to drain. Often, individuals notice that water is spilling down the sides of the gutters and onto the ground, not where the drain spout is.

However, you should clean your gutters on a regular basis to avoid further problems. Water coming down on the ground in the wrong area can cause flooded basements, stained siding, and even problems with the founding of the home. So, make sure you schedule a gutter cleaning. You can do the cleaning yourself or hire a professional gutter cleaner to do so.

When to Clean Gutters

For the average person, you should be cleaning your gutters at least two times a year. One of these times should be after leaves fall from any trees near your house. The second time might be six months later and may be a less intensive process. Often, other tasks should be done at these times, making it a perfect time to get them all out of the way.

Other Things to Do When Cleaning Gutters

If you want to pair gutter cleaning with other tasks, a few ideas follow:

  • Resetting the clocks when the time changes
  • Getting the tires on your car rotated
  • Changing out batteries in your smoke detector
  • Paying your auto insurance premiums, if semiannual
  • Swapping out the bulbs in any porch lights

Making a maintenance calendar can be a great way to ensure you get this, as well as other chores, done in due course.

Reasons to Clean More Often

Some situations may call for cleaning gutters more often than every six months. If there is a major storm in the area that causes leaves and twigs to blow around, that is a good time to clean the gutters out. You may also need more frequent cleaning if you have many trees on your property. If it seems that your gutters fill more often than once in six months, change your scheduling. Perhaps cleaning them every four months would work better for your situation.

Reducing Debris in Gutters

There are a few ways to avoid massive amounts of waste staying in your gutters, which makes gutter cleaning so important. When you clean your gutters, if you also flush out the downspouts, that can help provide some protection from excess debris. You can also check to be sure the gutters are properly aligned to be flush against the eaves of the roof. There are also commercial options for keeping debris out of gutters, but how well those work will vary.

Cleaning Gutters

Cleaning your gutters on your own is not difficult but it can be time-consuming, and it does require the use of an extendable ladder. The following steps will walk you through the process.

  1. Make sure you are wearing protective rubber gloves, as well as a shirt with long sleeves. This will help avoid getting scratched or otherwise injured while doing the cleaning.
  2. Use a quality extendable ladder with stabilizer. This helps prevent the ladder causing damage to the gutter while ensuring you are safe while you work off the ground.
  3. Remove the debris. This can be done by hand, or you can utilize a small shovel or gutter scoop. Drop the debris onto a tarp or other surface to avoid littering your lawn.
  4. Flush the gutters and the downspouts using a garden hose. This gets rid of any other debris. You can also see any leaks while you proceed with this step.

Cleaning gutters twice a year will take care of many problems associated with gutters. Pair them with another chore, so you remember to take care of the process at the right time. If you prefer not to do the work on your own, consider hiring a FIve Star Rated gutter cleaning company to do it for you.