Although caring for your gutters is paramount one rarely thinks about that task until problems arise with gutters not working properly. With clogged gutters, you expose yourself to sealing and moisture issues. Because gutters are often out of reach, one easily gives up and gutters remain uncleaned. Autumn is the right time to perform an annual checkup and gutters’ maintenance, as this is the time of year when they are mostly solicited, protecting your house from rain water streaming down the roof and/or other water runoff issues that might damage the structural integrity of your house. Gutters’ maintenance is not that difficult! Most of the time, heading up to the gutter with a pair of gloves and a bucket is all that’s necessary to get the task done. In some cases though, it can be more complicated. Peter James gives you 7 tips on how to effectively clean gutters.
Tip # 1: Securing access to gutters
The gutters are mostly out of reach. To clean and maintain them, you need to access them safely. Several solutions available to you. If you want to work on the gutters, the best option is to install scaffolding, but the most common method is the use of a ladder, conveniently placed for enabling you to look over the gutter. Make sure you have a tool holder and a stabilizer to reduce the risk of falls.
Tip # 2: Having the right tools
Now that you have secure access to your gutters, make sure you have the right tools for clean gutters. These are a pair of gloves, a water jet, one or more buckets, containers to dispose of the green and/or other waste, a cylindrical brush and wire handle. In some cases, you may need to run a length of wire up the gutter from the bottom in order to clear out any eventual clogging. If you have a pressure washer (e.g. Karcher or similar), you may make use of it.
Tip # 3: Clean gutters
Cleaning gutters go through several stages. The most important is to keep them clear from debris, leaves, nests, and other buildups. You must initially remove all trash you find, such as leaves or branches. You have to clear the open gutters as closed and using your tools. After you have cleared the visible obstructions away, you should carry a hose up the ladder and run water through the entire length of the gutter. This step is essential as it will help evacuate small waste and allow verification of the evacuation. Water must flow and be discharged without difficulty.
Clean gutters should be performed twice a year. Monitoring is required in the autumn, when the leaves are generally investing the garden and the gutters.
Tip # 4: Look at the Drainage Area:
All that water from the roof has to go somewhere… Make sure you know where yours lead to and what happens to the water where it gets collected. In areas with high rainfall, you may need to install a drain or dig a dry well to avoid dangerous collections of water that can seep into your house’s foundation.
Tip # 5: Inspect and repair
Once your gutters are cleaned, you can inspect them. If the water stagnates during cleaning, your gutter fasteners are probably damaged. You should also search and fix the holes or cracks, defective or broken brackets and damaged joints.
You also have to check the angles ! Because the constant flow of water can be powerful (just think of how it carves out canyons and gulches !), it can move the angle of your gutters over time. In order to maintain proper flow, gutters should descend at a quarter of an inch along every ten feet of pipe. Check the angles and descent and, if necessary, adjust the gutters so water can escape easily.
If you have the ability to repair your gutters, your turn! If not, call a professional. Repairs are then security and standards.
Tip # 6 : Consider Ornamentation
If you’re updating your gutters in the process of selling your house, or if you recently moved in and you are trying to make the new house feel more like a home, you might want to consider buying a decorative gutter. These pieces of artwork not only allow the water to flow from the roof to the ground just like any regular gutter, but also provide a lovely outdoor feature that can improve the value of your house.
Tip # 7: Minimize the risk
Do not intervene in case of heavy rain, storm or heat wave. If there are electrical connections near your gutters, make sure they will not get into your way. Also make sure that your ladder is secure, wear gloves for the job and if you come to more than 6 meters high, please bear in mind that wearing a harness is compulsory.
Proper maintenance of a gutter determines its lifespan. It is therefore important to take the time to look after your gutters at least twice a year. And since maintenance is not without risk, it is essential to take safety measures to avoid an accident.
If you are uncomfortable with heights or ladders, or notice damage to your gutters while cleaning, you also have the option to call for a professional as Peter James Gutter Cleaning with a 15 years experience in the maintenance of your gutters.
You can call Peter James Gutter Cleaning now, and receive a free quote no obligation to purchase.
Call now : 03 9681 7833