Gutters can get accumulated by dry leaves, tree branches, broken twigs, dead insects etc., especially during dry summers.
You might not even notice it until the monsoon begins and all the trash settled there falls with the flowing water! Hence it is important that you clean them from time to time.
How Often Should I Clean My Gutter?
The answer to this question is very subjective. It depends on several factors.
Ideally, it is recommended to clean the gutters at least twice a year; once in late spring and once in late summer or early fall.
This changes if you have pine trees near your house. Since, pine trees tend to shed a lot of pine needles throughout the year, the gutter of your house will receive foliage perennially. In this case, you should consider cleaning the gutter at least once in three months.
Another factor that comes into play is the size of the gutters. Some gutters are wide and deep; hence they do not clog easily.
On the other hand, some gutters are shallow and narrow; they do not take much time to get filled with all sorts of debris. Inspect the size of your gutter and accordingly, plan the number of times cleaning will be required, throughout the year.
About Gutter Guards
Installing gutter guards is a great way of reducing the number of frequencies of cleaning the gutters. Another beneficial thing about installing gutter guards is that they make the cleaning work much easier.
Let us have a look at the different questions that might cross your mind while considering gutter guards:
Are There Types of Gutter Guards?
Yes. Let’s have a look.
Metal Mesh Gutter Guards
These guards are basically just mesh screens that do the job of covering your gutters. Cleaning these is very simple – just remove off the foliage and other debris settled in it.
Brush Gutter Guards
The concept of these is akin to that of pipe cleaners. They can be cleaned by brushing them out.
Foam Gutter Guards
In this, the water passes through the foam leaving the foliage and other debris resting on the surface. However, there is one drawback with these; trapped moisture leads to the formation of mould and algae. Hence, replacing them from time to time is recommended.
Perforated Metal Gutter Guards
These are mostly made up of aluminium, for the consistency in strength and resistance from the pests it provides.
Choose the one that is the best and the most convenient option for you.
How to Remove Them for Cleaning?
- A ladder to climb up and access the gutter guards.
- A screwdriver or a power drill to be able to remove the screws holding the guards in place.
- A garden hose with a spray nozzle for the cleaning part.
- Drop Cloths to place on the ground.
Different methods go into the removal of different kinds of gutter guards. The steps for each one are given below.
Metal Mesh Gutter Guard
- Locate the screws.
- Clean the foliage by picking it up.
- Loosen the screws and remove them or pull the sections out.
- Ensure you do not damage any section of the gutter while doing so.
Brush Butter Guards
- These guards have many bristles. Clean them up by picking up the debris one by one.
- Just lift the guards from the gutter.
Foam Butter Guards
- Brush the debris and foliage off the foam inserts.
- Lift the foam guards off the guards.
Perforated Metal Gutter Guards
- Inspect thoroughly to check if the guard is held with screws in any section of the gutter.
- Brush the debris and foliage settled over it.
- If yes loosen the screws with the help of a screwdriver and remove them.
- Pry them out section wise.
- Lower them meticulously on the ground as to avoid them bending or breaking.
Take the proper precautions while using power drills.
Gutter guards are a huge help in helping keep the gutters clean. The number of times the guards on your house totally depend on the amount of debris it can hold and the seasons.
Save this article for when you have got any questions regarding gutter cleaning and gutter guards.