7 tips for making cleaning out your gutters and eavestroughs less of a chore

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Cleaning gutters is a major chore for many homeowners. Leaves, debris, and even small branches can build up in your gutters, blocking their drainage. With enough blockage over a period of time, your gutters can be permanently damaged.
How often you clean your gutters depends on how heavily wooded the area around your home is. In general, once or twice a year cleanings will keep your gutters performing as designed, protecting your home and wallet. These tips will help you clear gutters as quickly and easily as possible.
1. Use a commercial tool (h/t Power Washing Pros Inc.)
The downside to cleaning your gutters by hand is that you are constantly moving your ladder as you work your way down the side of your home. A gutter cleaning tool can help extend your reach. It attaches to the end of an extendable pole and will feature a hook and paddle for dragging and scooping out the leaves and debris. You still need a ladder, but you don't have to move it as often. You can find these tools online and in many home improvement stores.
2. Suck it out from the ground (h/t Glaister Consulting)
This solution reduces the risk of injury by keeping your feet on the ground! All you need is a ShopVac, 2 inch PVC, and fittings. You create a "hook" at the top to reach into your gutters. By attaching your homemade PVC gutter cleaner to your ShopVac, you can easily suck the leaves and debris from your gutters. You can even switch the settings on your vacuum and blow out blockages, if necessary. Cleaning gutters without a ladder has never been easier!
3. Use garden tools to speed up the process (h/t Quarto Knows)
Ground cleaning is a quick and easy way to clean your gutters, but sometimes you do need to get on a ladder and do a thorough cleaning and inspection of your gutters. To easily remove the debris and leaves, grab a garden trowel before you head up the ladder. It easily fits into your gutter and helps remove the decomposed gunk easily.
4. Inspect your gutters for potential problems (h/t Lowes Home Improvement)
Once you have cleared debris, you should inspect your gutters for proper drainage and any potential problems. Once you have removed the leaves and debris, use a garden hose to flush the gutters. If any standing water remains, your gutter slope may need adjustment. This is also the perfect time to look for leaking spots that need to be repaired or areas where the gutter is becoming loose.
5. Use a bucket for less mess (h/t The Spruce)
When cleaning gutters by hand, it can be temping to simply drop the debris to the ground for raking later. The downside to this is you often come down your ladder to find dirty streaks and debris on the side of your home, adding the step of washing the façade off. Attaching a bucket to your ladder allows you to simply drop the debris into the bucket. When you move your ladder, you simply dump the bucket at the ground ladder. Less mess and better results!
6. Wash the outside of your gutters (h/t Chaotically Creative)
The outsides of your gutters can become quite dirty from rainwater splashing down and overflow. This genius idea uses a car cleaning brush to gently scrub your gutters with no damage. Using a strong cleaner speeds up the process. Simply spray your gutter with a commercial degreaser and cleaner and scrub. Rinse the brush in a bucket of water to clean out debris and keep the cleaning process moving quickly.
7. Install protective gutter screens (h/t Family Handyman)
Various gutter protectors are available to keep leaves out of your gutters. They reduce your maintenance to annual inspections. According to the Family Handyman, the cost of gutter screen ranges from 10 cents to 2 dollars a foot. The screen stops leaves, twigs, and sticks from falling into the gutter.
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