You’ve been busy this summer. Now it’s fall and you’re even busier, you don’t know when you’ll get around to cleaning the gutters. Since they haven’t been done in a while, you’re really not looking forward to it! Perhaps you’re thinking about hiring a gutter cleaning service. If you are, it is recommended that you get a minimum of three estimates – this will allow you a good base for comparison. But estimates can vary from one company to another. Here are the main factors that influence the cost of gutter cleaning.
Type of Gutter
Do you have copper gutters, vinyl gutters, or aluminum gutters? The type of gutter material will have an impact on the estimated cost of cleaning the gutter system. Copper gutters require different cleaning techniques than vinyl gutters. Cleaning vinyl gutters are fairly straightforward, but they need cleaning solutions specific to that gutter material. Because aluminum gutters can be easily dented, care needs to be taken when using ladders or power tools such as a pressure washer.
Sectional gutters or seamed gutters generally have more debris to clear out than seamless aluminum gutters. Seamless gutters can cost lees to clean than sectional gutters since they have fewer seams where debris typically accumulates.
Length of the Gutters
Gutter cleaning companies typically charge either one of three ways – by the linear foot (the actual number of feet of guttering), the square footage of your home (eliminates having to measure the gutters), or the hour. Whatever method, it’s safe to assume, the larger the house, the more it will cost.
Condition of the Gutters
Another factor that affects the total cost of a gutter cleaning estimate is the condition of the gutters. A well-maintained gutter system doesn’t require as much cleaning as neglected gutters do. Better maintained gutter systems typically have less debris to deal with and won’t need as many repairs.
Two or More Storeys
The gutters on one-storey house is easier to reach than a gutter system on the second floor of a home,, so they will be easier to clean (and cost less). A general rule of thumb is the higher the roofline, the more a gutter cleaning costs.
Aspects of the roof that could affect the total cost of a gutter cleaning estimate are size, the number of rooflines, condition, slope, and accessibility.
Size: Large homes with more gutters will typically cost more to clean.
Number of rooflines: When a house has multiple rooflines, it can cost more to clean the gutters.
Condition: The condition of the roof affects the final cost of an estimate if it’s in poor condition and poses safety issues for the gutter cleaning technician.
Slope: A flat roof is easy to clean when compared to a roof that has a slope of more than 30° (steep).
Accessibility: A roof that is accessible and allows unimpeded access to the gutter system will cost less than a roofing system that is difficult to reach. The grading around the house is also a factor in ascertaining roof accessibility – if the ground around a home is uneven or hilly it can be difficult to set up ladders to access the roof.
The cost of labour will be the most significant factor in the final gutter cleaning cost of an estimate. Check each estimate to see how that particular company is charging – by the hour or linear footage or square foot.
A detailed gutter cleaning estimate should outline everything the company intends to do when cleaning your gutters. This typically includes removing debris from inside of the gutters, cleaning the outside of the gutters, cleaning the inside and outside of the downspouts, protecting the surrounding area, and clean-up. Depending on the company you hire, you could be charged a separate fee for cleaning materials, replacement materials for minor repairs (e.g. nails, brackets), and equipment.
An estimate might also include extra services such as a gutter inspection, downspout installation (if more downpipes are required to make your gutter system more functional), travel expenses if you live outside of the company’s service area, and time of year (gutter cleaning service companies charge more during the busy autumn and spring seasons). Make sure you understand what you are being charged extra for and whether or not you want that particular service.