No one really wants to climb up onto the roof of a residential or commercial building to clean gutters, but that doesn’t change the fact that it has to be done on occasion. Like all things, there’s a right way and a wrong way to clean out a gutter system. Here are some savvy tips on how to clean residential or commercial gutters. Keeping your gutters clean can help prevent a leak from forming.
Are There Any Major Differences Between Cleaning Residential Gutters Versus Commercial Gutters?
Design aside, the biggest difference between commercial gutter systems and residential ones is that commercial gutters tend to be significantly larger than their residential counterparts. For the most part, all this means is that it can take longer to clean out a gutter system on a commercial building than it would typically take you to clean gutters on a residential home.
What You’ll Need To Clean Residential Or Commercial Gutters
The supplies that you will need to clean either commercial or residential gutters are largely the same. You will need an extension ladder, a bucket, gloves, safety goggles, and in most cases, a screwdriver.
The average ladder won’t be tall enough to reach the roof of either a house or commercial structure which is why you will need to use an extension ladder specifically. You should always wear both gloves and safety goggles when cleaning out a gutter system on any type of building. All kinds of nasty pests and debris can be found in a gutter system which makes it dangerous to reach in with your bare hands. If you reach in and feel something sharp it could startle you enough to make you fall off the ladder. Likewise, if you disturb pests that have been resting in the gutter they can fly out and throw you off balance which is why you should wear a pair of safety goggles.
Some types of gutter systems require a screwdriver to remove certain panels to allow access before you can start cleaning. Once you are securely near the roof and have your footing on the ladder you can start scooping out all of the debris and deposit it into the bucket.
Depending on the size of your gutter system and the amount of time that went by before cleaning it you may need to take several trips up and down the ladder to empty the bucket.
It’s good practice to lay a tarp down along the edge of the building to catch any excess debris that may fall outside of the bucket. This will make it easier for you to gather additional debris and clean up.
You should always have a helper with you to hold the ladder when cleaning out a gutter system. Balancing on a ladder by yourself is a dangerous and foolhardy undertaking that could easily land you in the emergency room.
When finishing up you should make an effort to rinse out the gutter system with a hose or just flush it out with several buckets of water. There’s only so much that you can clean by hand before having to rinse out your gutters. It doesn’t do any good to start rinsing your gutter system when it’s still clogged and chock full of debris.
When To Hire It Out
Not everyone is comfortable cleaning their own gutters which is why many people choose to hire it a commercial roofing contractor. If you are leaning towards having this job hired out, be sure to hire someone who is both licensed and insured.
While cleaning gutters by yourself can be physically dangerous, having them cleaned by someone who is neither licensed nor insured can be dangerous litigiously.