Equipment for Gutter Cleaning
You will need a few things to clean your gutters. The most important one is a ladder, as you won’t be able to clean your gutters if you can’t reach them! If your gutters are too high up for a regular ladder to reach, you may want to consider hiring a professional company to do the task for you or else enlisting a knowledgeable friend to help you avoid accidents.
Safety gear is the next best thing to have. The basic thing you really need is a good pair of work gloves. Some people go as far as wearing a dust mask and safety glasses, but that’s really not necessary under normal circumstances. Gloves, however, are necessary because you’ll be getting your hands in a lot of messy stuff up in your gutters. Honestly, you may not know what you’ll run into up there!
As far as gear you’ll need to do the actual cleaning, a small garden trowel, a handheld garden cultivator (that miniature pitchfork type tool you keep in the shed), and a hose. The cultivator is used to break up larger clogs, while the trowel can help you scrape silt and dirt residue from the bottom of the gutters.
Steps to Cleaning Your Gutters
Now, for the simple steps to cleaning your gutters!
1. Climb up your ladder and inspect
Before you can actually start cleaning, you’ll need to see roughly what you’re up against. Climb up and take a peek at what’s hanging out in your gutters. If there’s anything in there that you don’t think you can deal with, such as live animal nests or insects infestations, you can easily climb back down at this stage and call a professional for some help. Otherwise, you’ll now be prepared to get to work.
2. Remove large clogs
Start by removing any larger and more obvious clogs and debris. In Autumn after the leaves have fallen this can be a laborious task, but it will be worth it to keep your house in great shape. The handheld cultivator helps a lot where there are actual clogs, but you’ll need to use your hands for most of the loose debris.
3. Scrape silt layer
On the bottom of your gutters, there is more than likely a layer of silt and dirt. Scrape this up as much as possible with the trowel or some other similar tool. Don’t skip this step, because that silt can be the cause of mold, leaks, and rust over time.
4, Run water through the gutters
Bring up your hose and run a line of water through the entire gutter system. Make sure the water isn’t getting stopped up anywhere and that it’s flowing properly. This is a sign of a job well done!
5. Remove clogs from downspouts (if applicable)
If there are issues when the water is going down the downspouts, take some time to clean those out as well, with any means necessary. Downspouts are difficult to clean, and may be different for each home. If they’re working properly, leave them be. If water isn’t draining through them, clean them out as well.