As homeowners, our gutters are often the last thing we think about. Until a problem arises, that is. Considering a faulty gutter system is one of the biggest causes of basement water problems, it is crucial every homeowner invests in preventative maintenance when it comes to their gutters.

We all know it is important to clean our gutters, so we have created simple tips to keep in mind when taking on this challenge.

Start with the roof
Clean gutters start with a nice clean roof. Take time to power wash your roof. Power washing your roof will remove dirt, debris, twigs, etc. This especially helps, when it rains so the debris does not fall into your gutters. Plus, another advantage of power washing your roof is that you will be able to get a good look, to see if you need any roof maintenance in the near future.

Wear the right clothes
You never know what can be in your gutters, so you will want to be protected. Wearing a long-sleeve shirt and goggles are a must. If cleaning your gutters in the summer, something to keep in mind is shingles can get hot. Wearing long sleeves can protect you from getting burned by the shingles. Plus, wearing long sleeves can protect you from begin scratched by rough shingles. Finally, long sleeves will help protect you from getting completely filthy. Another piece of proper clothing are gloves. Some people choose rubber gloves because they are waterproof and will protect your hands from water, sludge, etc. The downside of rubber gloves is they tear easily. If you opt for suede gloves, you will have more dexterity and a better grip, providing you with added safety, however they are not waterproof. Try both and see what works best for you. The time of year may play a factor as well. Rubber gloves in cooler temps may not provide you enough warmth for your hands. Again, if you are cleaning your gutters after it has rained, rubber gloves may be what is needed to protect your hands from all the water.

Grab a scoop
A gutter scoop, hand trowel, or even a child’s plastic shovel, can be excellent tools to clean your gutters. Often times, just reaching in and grabbing the debris works best, because you can feel if more debris needs to be cleaned from the gutters.

Keep leaves and debris off your lawn
Save your lawn and lay a tarp on the ground where you will be cleaning the gutters. It will make clean up much easier. Not having to pick up debris, which is often wet and coated with sludge on your lawn, saves time and will not cause damage to your lawn. Not to mention, a tarp will catch any stray leaves or twigs that fall from trees in your yard.

Flush out the gutters
While you may have removed the debris from the gutters, there could be mud or a wet sludge that needs to be cleaned out. So, as the final step, use a hose and flush your gutters with a blast of water. The blast of water will not only push the remaining dirt and sludge down the gutters it will allow you to see if the water is running fluidly down the gutters. If the water is not running fluidly, there is a debris clog, which much be cleaned out. In addition, blasting water through your gutters is a great way to spot any leaks or cracks that require gutter repair or replacement.

Consider this — the average cost of gutters is around $916. So with this in mind, it is important you take time to thoroughly invest in gutter cleaning and maintenance. It will protect your home from unwanted and costly water damage.

Looking for gutter replacement or repair? Contact G & K Roofing and Remodeling, Inc. today for a quote.