How to Clean Rain Gutters

When was the last time you cleaned your rain gutters? This easily overlooked chore should be done at least twice a year. We recommend once in the spring and again in the fall. 

If your gutters are allowed to fill up with debris, it can lead to lasting damage to your home. Leaf buildup can cause standing water on your roof. That water in turn can leak into your walls, causing mold and mildew. Beyond forming clogs, leaf litter is an ideal nesting place for insects and rodents.

We’ve included a beginner’s guide to gutter cleaning below. Even if you’ve never cleaned your gutters before, these simple steps will help get your gutters cleared out for the upcoming rainy season.

Note: Plan to clean your gutters on a sunny day with little to no wind. Rain gutters are easiest to clean after several dry days. 

What You’ll Need:

  • A ladder tall enough to safely reach your rain gutters
  • 2 buckets – 1 to hold your tools and 1 to gather debris
  • Work gloves
  • Latex gloves (to be worn under the work gloves for extra protection)
  • Garden hose (a nozzle attachment is optional, but preferred)
  • Safety glasses

How to Clean Your Rain Gutters

1. Start near the downspout.
This is the pipe that directs water down from your gutter to the ground. The downspout is usually located near a corner of your house. 

2. Remove large debris.
Use your hands to scoop out leaves, sticks, and other large debris. Use your gardening trowel to scoop out any wet plant material, mud, and small or well-packed debris that may be difficult to remove by hand.

3. Work moving away from the downspout.
Move your ladder along the gutter as you clean. Once you’ve finished cleaning out the gutters, you can simply spray them out with a garden hose. Make sure that you direct water into your gutters back toward the downspout so that it drains out quickly. 

4. Check for clogs.
If the water does not freely drain out from your gutter after cleaning, your downspout may be clogged. Find the lowest joint of your downspout and disconnect the pipe. Using your hands or trowel, remove any blockages. Once that is complete, spray water directly into the downspout to remove any other stuck materials.

5. Seal any leaks.
If you notice your gutters leaking during the spray-out process, it’s a simple DIY fix! Wait for the gutters to fully dry, then use sealant to close any cracks or loose joints in the piping.

6. Clean your gutters regularly.
Make future gutter cleaning easier on yourself by cleaning them out at least twice a year. If you have issues with clogs, you may also want to install gutter screens to protect your downspouts from blockages.


Water Damage Restoration

Dealing with water damage from flooded gutters? Restoration Partners is here to help! Our water damage restoration services include repairing and replacing damage inside and outside of the home. We can help with repairing gutters, removing and replacing damaged drywall, and restoring your roof. Contact us today and get a no-obligation quote.