7 Best Ways to Clean Eavestroughs Properly
An eavestrough – or rain gutter – is the system that is used to direct water away from your home’s foundation and also protects your home’s landscaping and siding.
It’s important to clean your eavestrough regularly to prevent water damage to your home. It’s also important to regularly clean your eavestrough so that debris (like sticks, leaves, and other particles) don’t clog them. Clogged eavestroughs can result in water getting under the roof and can even leak right into the foundation.
Luckily, it doesn’t take a professional to clean and maintain your eavestrough. There are things that you can do as a homeowner to make sure your eavestrough is always in tip-top condition.
Here are the best ways to clean eavestroughs properly:
1. Clean eavestroughs from a ladder
The best way to clean eavestroughs is to climb on a ladder and start cleaning. If you have an extendable ladder, or if you can borrow one from a friend or family member, this will allow you to reach up to your eavestrough to clean them out.
How does this method work? Use the ladder to get nice and close to your gutters. Once you’re in position, use your hands to remove any and all debris that you see. Once that is removed, you may find that there is further debris that is stuck on your gutters. You’ll need to make sure you remove this as well.
Once complete, use a hose to rinse out the rest of the debris. It’s recommended that you use gloves for this and that you’re very careful when using the ladder. It’s always a good idea to have a friend around who can act as a spotter. Safety is key when using a ladder.
2. Clean eavesthroughs using a gutter scoop
This is another good way to clean eavestroughs. When you’re up on your ladder and about to remove debris, rather than your hands, you can use a gutter scoop to get all of the debris out, especially the stuff that you found once you cleared out the sticks and leaves. These too are available at your local hardware store.
Using a scoop will keep your hands safe and dry (something you want, especially if it’s cold outside). You can also use a spatula from your kitchen if you don’t want to go out and buy a gutter scoop. The great thing about a gutter scoop (and even a spatula) is that they won’t damage your eavestrough.
3. Clean eavestroughs from the Ground
For this option, you can purchase a gutter cleaning kit, which you can pick up at your local hardware store. The kit works by attaching to your hose (or pressure washer if you have one). Then you can use the hose to reach up.
You need to hook the tip into your eavestrough and simply rinse and wash out the leaves, sticks, and other debris. This is a great option if you’re afraid of heights, or if you would rather stay safely on the ground. It works just as well as any other eavestrough cleaning method.
Another option for cleaning your eavestrough from the ground is to buy a kit that attaches to your vacuum. This method works by vacuuming the leaves, sticks, and other debris out of your eavestrough.
4. Spread a tarp underneath your ladder
This is a great way to catch all of the debris that you’ll be removing from your eavestrough, rather than it going all over your lawn. This will make cleaning up a breeze! All you’ll need to do is roll up the tarp and either hose it down or throw it away.
5. Unclog your downspout
Now that you’ve found the best way to clean eavestroughs, it’s time to move on to your downspout. You want to make sure that this too is clear of any and all clogs.
How can you tell if your downspout is clogged? If you notice that the flow from your downspout is weak, this may be an indication that it’s clogged. Don’t worry, it’s easy to fix!
All you need to do is insert your hose through the bottom of your downspout and then spray your house upward and into the downspout. Once done, check to make sure the flow is stronger, and you should be good to go!
6. Repair sagging metal with a gutter hanger
Once your eavestrough is clear, you can go ahead and assess the condition of the metal. If you notice it’s sagging, it’s a good time to repair it. How can you do this? All you need to do is mount a gutter hanger and you’re all set.
7. Install a gutter guard
So that you don’t find yourself in a situation where you have a very clogged eavestrough again, it’s recommended to purchase and install a gutter guard. Your new gutter guard will catch debris and stop it from getting inside and clogging it.
It’s a good time to install your gutter guard once you have finished cleaning them out. To install it, lay it down starting from the left side. You want to make sure that the back part of the guard is underneath your shingles. Then lay the other edge right up against the front edge of your gutter.
All that’s left to do is screw the gutter guard in place and then repeat until the whole thing is covered. It’s that easy!