Building & Renovating

How-To: Cleaning The Gutter

Just because you can't see the buildup from below, doesn't mean it doesn't exist

Photography: (Main Photo)

Gutters are a vital part of the roofing system. During a storm, it catches rainwater from the roof and reroutes it away from the house—protecting the basement, walls, windows, doors and even the garden from water damage or flooding. While it plays an important role, it is often overlooked—we take it for granted during the summer so we'll most likely end up with a clogged spillway during the rainy season. To avoid this problem, make sure to keep it in good condition all-year round! Let this step-by-step guide help you: 

What you need:

  • a steady ladder 
  • working gloves
  • hand trowel
  • hand rake
  • a small broom
  • hose with sprayer
  • garbage bags
  • Place the ladder at the very end of the roof so you can reach into the crevices of the gutter without straining your arm. Using the hand trowel, start scooping the loose leaves and debris from the gutter. Move the ladder over a few feet and repeat until you finish the entire stretch. 
  • Once you've removed all of the gunk you can take out by hand, use the rake to loosen up any build-up that has stuck to the walls of the gutter. Repeat the process of scooping out everything you're able to take out. 
  • Once you've made sure that the gutter is free of leaves and different types of debris, use the hose to wash the gutter. Remember to direct it toward the downspout to keep the gutter from overflowing and making an even bigger mess. 
  • Sweep up any muck that has fallen onto your yard. Make sure to dispose of the leaves and twigs properly or you can choose to recycle it by using it as fertilizer for your garden. 

PHOTOS: (Main) | Pixabay |

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