There are few things as beautiful as a glorious fall day, crisp, fresh and colorful. Unfortunately, one of the unpleasant side-effects of the season is dirty, clogged gutters. We all know the problem can’t be ignored, but the unpleasant reality of actually doing the job can make us put it off a long time. One option is to hire professional gutter cleaning services, such as those offered by A.G. Williams, but if you want to do it yourself, here are few tips:
1. Be Safe! Ladders are one of the leading causes of household injury in North America each year. If you do not have the correct ladders to safely and comfortably reach your gutters, don’t try it. For first story gutters, use an A-frame stepladder. Make sure that it is set up securely on level ground before you climb it. Don’t climb above the indicated step (usually the 2nd highest rung), and don’t lean or overreach.
For second story gutters, use an extension ladder. If the ladder is tall enough to extend above the gutter, tape some kind of padding on the rails to prevent scratching the gutter. If the ladder reaches to below the gutter, use ladder stand-offs to position it off the siding. This prevents damage to the house, and it keeps you from having to lean backwards to reach the gutter.
2. Clean the inside and outside at the same time. Each time you get your ladder situated, clean the outside and inside of the section you can reach. First, scoop out leaves and debris on the inside, dropping them to the ground or into a bucket. Next, use a sponge or soft brush to scrub the outside of the gutter. Use a mild detergent to remove mildew and residue, then rinse with water. Repeat this for the length of the gutter.
3. Check water flow. Use a garden hose to spray a good deal of water into the gutter. Watch to see if it flows correctly towards the downspouts. Do you see low areas where it pools and sits? The gutter may need adjusting. Does it go quickly down the downspout? If not, the downspout is likely plugged. A plumbing snake is the best way to clean it out if the water does not go down quickly.
Why are clean gutters so important, anyways?
Gutters channel water away from the house, preventing moisture damage. If they are dirty on the outside, the only harm is that they look ugly. But if they are clogged on the inside, many damaging conditions can occur:
– Clogged gutters and downspouts can cause water to build up in the gutter. When it does this, the gutter overflows and the water can leak into the house, causing great damage. Also, the weight of so much water can cause the gutters to sag or break.
– In the winter, melting ice and snow will collect in the gutters, and if the gutter is backed up, the water will re-freeze there. This condition worsens so that an ice-dam develops, which can destroy roofing and siding, and also cause significant damage to the gutters.
The safest, fastest and most effective way to clean your gutters in the fall is to call a professional. A.G. Williams, a residential painting contractor, offers excellent gutter cleaning services in New York and Connecticut. We already have all of the ladders, scaffolds and cleaning equipment necessary to do the job correctly, and we have a long-established reputation for taking excellent care of homes.
Our gutter cleaning services include debris removal and a careful hand-washing of the exterior of the gutter. When the autumn leaves have got your gutters plugged, call A.G. Williams to straighten things out! Serving Dobbs Ferry, Sleepy Hollow, Valhalla, Bedford, Round Hill and North Stamford, A.G. Williams is your best choice for gutter cleaning in New York and Connecticut.