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Cleaning Gutters: The Forgotten Chore

Running errands, doing household chores, and working a full-time job is a real balancing act.  It becomes more and more difficult to manage simple tasks on your to-do list.  As this list continually grows, one task tends to move further and further down the list, if it is even on the list to begin with.  This forgotten chore is cleaning your rain gutters.  Although dreaded, it can be a simple task if you maintain it and do not push it off for another day.  Your rain gutter is a part of your house for a reason; so do not avoid the necessary maintenance it requires.

Cleaning your rain gutters can be a simple chore if you break up the cleaning process to a couple of times per year.  It is when you hold off on gutter maintenance that it becomes a big hassle. Sure, most of us don’t get excited about dedicating free time to our gutters, but it’s like brushing your teeth – if you don’t do it, you’ll regret it in the long run.  It is important to clean your rain gutters for several reasons, and if not done frequently enough, the damages can be costly.

What’s the Big Deal?

While rain gutters are often overlooked, they actually play a big role in maintaining the condition of your home.  The biggest responsibility of rain gutters is to transport the rain down from your roof and away from your house’s foundation.  Rain gutters protect the interior and exterior siding of your house, along with your basement.  When there is a clog or crack in the gutter, serious damage can occur.  Gutters can clog from leaves, twigs, debris, and animals; and once a clog forms, the problems begin. 

First and foremost, the gutter will become heavier from all of the excess debris and water, potentially causing it to break.  If your gutter breaks away from the house, you’ll have to cover the costs of a new gutter, as well as any damages done to your siding and windows.  If the gutter is barely hanging to your roof and there is resting water, it can lead to the risk of rusting.  Depending on the time of year, the settled water can also form into an ice dam.  Excess water in the rain gutter can lead to spilling over onto the house’s siding, and flooding in the basement.  All of these complications and costs of repair can be avoided by keeping your rain gutters clean. 

Don’t Let Your Gutters Leave You Feeling Gutted

As with any home repair, gutter cleaning can be dangerous and it is advised to always use caution.  You can clean your gutter with a few tools including a ladder, hose, gloves, trough, and trash bags.  When attempting yourself, please make sure the ladder is sturdy.  Using your gloves and trough, you can pull out any debris and scrub down any unwanted dirt from the gutter. Then, run water from the hose down the gutter, to identify any cracks or clogs that are not visible to the eye. 

Faulty gutters are not always easy to spot, so at any time you suspect there could be gutter damage, make sure it receives immediate attention.