Clean Your Gutters For Winter

The Colorado moving company has come and gone, you’ve unpacked the boxes, settled in, and now it’s time to get ready for winter. You splurged on the movers, so you’re looking to cut costs in this process. You start to think, “What can I do for myself?”

One of those things is cleaning your gutters. It’s important – if you have leaves and debris clogging your gutters, how can the snow and ice properly drain from your roof? If a lot of snow falls, you don’t want the snow melt hindered by leaves and debris, so it’s important to be sure they are free and clear for the spring. You can easily clean your gutters if you’re not afraid of heights or climbing ladders. And if you are afraid of climbing that ladder, you should consider overcoming that fear! It saves money, and it’s not hard at all.

Why?

To know why you should clean your gutters, you need to understand the purpose of the lowly gutter. The gutter directs water away from your home, and is crucial during all seasons – the spring and summer, they keep you from getting soaked during a torrential downpour while you’re trying to unlock your front door, and in the winter it keeps puddles created by dripping water from gathering which eventually turn into sheets of ice overnight that cause you to slip on your way to work.

These things happen when you don’t clean your gutters. A clog plugs up the gutters, blocking the downspout that comes out in the area you wanted the water to go, making the water overflow into the areas you DON’T want water to go. In the winter, that means ice dams will form. During the summer, the water that collects and cannot drain properly becomes a breeding ground for mosquitoes. In the winter, the frigid temps causes expansion of the gutter system due to freezing water, which can damage gutters and make them leak.

How to Clean Your Gutters

First, you want to make sure you have everything you need (and some things you could do without, but really, you should have all of it to be truly prepared). You’ll definitely need a ladder and a bucket (optionally a wheelbarrow instead), gloves, and goggles to protect your eyes from errant sticks and debris. A dust mask is ideal, and if you’d like, you can buy a leaf scooper (but your gloved hands work just as effectively).

Begin by scooping up handfuls of debris. You can choose to collect in the bucket while on the ladder, or just drop it directly on the ground to clean up later. If you choose the bucket method, be sure to hang it from the ladder so that one hand can be free at all times to hold on to the ladder.

Once all debris is clear, use your hose or a bucket full of water to run water through the gutters. A hose is ideal, as it can be used to destroy spider webs and peel debris that the bucket of water just can’t knock loose. During this process, look to see that the water is flowing uninhibited from the downspout. If not, it’s a sign you should take the downspout off in order to remedy this problem.

After the gutters are flowing freely, you can use the hose to rinse the debris that has fallen onto your driveway, deck, or patio. If you’ve just dumped the debris directly onto the ground, grab the wheelbarrow and clean up any small piles of leaves.

If You Spot A Leak

Use a grease pencil to mark areas that are leaking while you are hosing the gutters out. Chances are you won’t be able to tell where they are when the water dries! Apply gutter sealant to these areas, scraping away the old caulking before applying the new. Don’t forget the insides of the joints!

Cleaning your gutters is an important part of enjoying your new home. The Colorado moving company helped move you in, and it’s up to you to keep things in order to truly enjoy your time spent at home sweet home. If you haven’t moved yet, call Exodus, your Colorado moving company, for a free moving quote, or ask us on Facebook about a free moving quote!

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