Cleaning your gutters is usually a fairly simple job. However, there are some things to keep in mind as you work on this basic home maintenance task. You’ll need to figure out if there are any clogs in the gutters or downspouts. It’s easy to clear away a few dry leaves and twigs, but scrubbing away decomposed organic matter or compacted dirt will take more effort. Here are a few of the most common and effective ways to clean gutters.

Clean Your Gutters by Hand

Set up your ladder. Then, using heavy-duty gloves or a gutter scoop, pull out leaves and debris and place them in a bucket. After everything is removed, flush your downspouts and gutters with a garden hose until you’re sure that all areas are clear. If you find a downspout is clogged, use a plumber’s snake to clear the obstruction. Rinse with the hose afterward.

How to Clean Your Gutters With a Garden Hose

You can try using a regular garden hose to clean gutters if they aren’t entirely clogged. With a curved, gutter-cleaning attachment, you may not need a ladder.  Begin at the area farthest from the downspout. The pressure from the hose will dislodge dirt and debris. Work toward the downspouts to wash away built-up grime. After cleaning, inspect all gutters and remove remaining debris by hand.

Use a Wet/Dry Vacuum

Clean guttering with a wet/dry vacuum. If you don’t have one, rent a vacuum from the home improvement store. Get the curved attachments and hoses needed to clear the gutters without climbing a ladder. Use the vacuum to remove debris. Finish by flushing the gutters with a garden hose.

Clean Your Gutters With a Pressure Washer

A pressure washer will be useful if it has been some time since you last cleaned the gutters. A heavy layer of debris may have built up. Use the washer to blast away dirt, leaves, twigs, and algae. Take care not to damage guttering with the washer. It is best to use gutter cleaning attachments for a pressure washer instead of trying to use this device from a ladder. Gloves and eye protection are recommended. You’ll need to clean off the exterior walls and roof when you’re done with the gutters. A pressure washer is especially effective when clearing out clogged downspouts. Point the nozzle down the spout and spray until the downspout is clear.

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