Spring is advancing, blossoms are falling, it’s definitely time to start thinking about cleaning the gutters. If it seems harder than the year before to get motivated, you’re not alone. It’s a messy chore – who wants to be up and down a ladder for at least a couple of hours? But when the gutter system has been cleaned inside and out, it can be satisfying knowing that your home is protected from the elements. When cleaning the gutters this spring, use these tips to help you save time.
You’ll save a lot of time if you get organized first before actually cleaning the gutters. Choose a day and time, especially if you need an assistant or two. Gather your tools and cleaning supplies together in one place. Check the ladder to see if it is in proper working condition.
Use the Right Tools
Using the right tools will help you cut the time you spend on your gutter cleaning chore. While any type of soft bristle brush might seem suitable for gutters, as long as it doesn’t scratch, selecting one with a handle on the top rather than the side will make it easier to move it around inside the gutter channel.
If you’ve always used a garden trowel, consider buying a gutter scoop – the sides are higher and they typically hold more debris than a trowel.
Select the Right Gloves
Gloves protect your hands from debris that is often ridden with bacteria. They can also save your hands from being snagged on metal edges or corners. But select the right gloves for the job or you might be spending time pulling off old ones and having to replace them with a fresh pair. The best type of glove for gutter cleaning is made from suede: it is flexible unlike leather, doesn’t soak up liquid like cotton, and resists getting poked by twigs and protrusions like rubber.
Scoop First Then Spray
If you’re tempted to use the garden hose to make the gutter cleaning process go faster, resist temptation! Scooping the larger clumps and pieces of debris clears the gutter channel of the very material that can be washed toward the gutter outlet but then builds up in the downspout, creating a clog. Don’t make extra work for yourself: remove the gunk first with a gutter scoop before using the garden hose to rinse away the residue.
Right into the Trash Bag
Some people hook a pail on to the ladder to put the trash in and then empty it into the trash bag later; others dump the gunk on the ground and then rake the debris up before bagging it. Either way, you’re doing the same job twice. Instead, attach a garbage bag to the ladder; it will save you time in the long run