How to Clean Your Gutters (and How to Avoid Having to do it at all)

cleaning gutters how to clean gutters

Are your gutters clean and clear of leaves and debris? If you’re not sure, chances are they probably aren’t.

If you haven’t put the ladder up to check in awhile, you may be in for a surprise no matter what time of year it is. Knowing how to clean gutters (and how to avoid having to do it at all) is important for keeping your gutters problem-free and eliminating hefty repair bills.

Why do I need to clean my gutters?

Gutters are designed to funnel water off your roof and away from your home’s foundations, and tend to be the catch-all for assorted leaves, dirt, debris, weeds, birds nests and muck that can accumulate over time. A clogged gutter can potentially cause water to accumulate, overflow and run down the sides of your house to the foundations, causing damage from pooling and maybe even flood the lower levels of your home.

Once damaged from neglect and lack of cleaning, your gutter can also rot and holes will form, which can provide access into your ceiling for pests, snakes and possums. The trapped water in your gutters is also a potential breeding ground for mosquitos and bugs.

Knowing how to clean your gutters, and when to, is important to support the longevity of your home's structure.

Checking them twice a year is recommended, and a lot more often during storm season. Even better is knowing how to avoid it altogether, but we’ll get to that.

How to clean gutters

There are a few tools you’ll need for cleaning your roof gutters:

  • A good-sized ladder, to reach the gutters easily without overextending (remember, safety first)
  • A paint scraper
  • A hose
  • A bucket or rubbish bags (for the mess)
  • Optional: a pair of rubber or gardening gloves, for protecting your hands while clearing out any muck

First, setup your ladder next to the downpipe, and remove anything that’s clogging it up so that any water that’s been sitting there can run free. You may have some built-up accumulation, so keep clearing it until the water drains easily.

Move along the gutter, clearing out any leaves, debris and muck that you come across into your bucket or rubbish bag. You may need to employ the paint scraper at this point to scrape out any of the smaller debris sitting in the gutter.

Next, use your hose on a high-pressure setting to wash out your gutters, clearing any remaining debris along the gutter to the downpipe, checking and removing any other clogged up debris from the downpipe once you have (or if it clogs mid-wash).

This is the minimum required to keep your gutters clean and free flowing.  Many roofs also have valleys which need to be cleared of leaves and debris as well, and this involves climbing onto the roof, which can be quite dangerous.

How to avoid cleaning gutters for good

Cleaning out your own gutters may not be something that’s high on your priority list or list of maintenance tasks. If it isn’t, you have two options – hire someone to do it twice a year, or install gutter guards to prevent it altogether.

The cost of hiring someone to come do it will add up over time, and can be a dangerous job – falls from heights are a very real risk and as the homeowner, you could be liable.

A safer, more cost-effective option over time is to have gutter guards installed, to remove the need to clean and maintain your gutters altogether. And if you’re in a zone that’s prone to bushfires, gutter guards are a recommended safety precaution to keep your home and family safe from flying embers.

Guttershield’s G3 premium mesh is a patented design that is expertly installed along your gutters, preventing leaves, dirt and debris from getting into the gutter and clogging it up. It also stops water sheeting during the heavy downpours we often receive in Queensland. We provide a 20-year product warranty, to give you the peace of mind that your gutters will be free of leaves, weeds and vermin all year round, saving you maintenance time and costs.

Get a free inspection of your gutters now

Find out more today about how Guttershield Qld can save you time and money and protect your home, and contact us direct for friendly and experienced advice.  We’ll pop out and inspect your roof and gutters, give you an appraisal of any issues, and prepare a no surprises quote to install our Guttershield mesh products at your place.