Keeping your gutters clean is one of those necessary chores we love to hate. We end up loosing our valuable weekends while we risk our lives balancing on a ladder trying not to cut our hand on the sharp edges as it's squeezed into the small gap between the gutter edge and the roof edge....Arrrgh
Isn't this the 21st century? Surely there has to be a simpler way to clean gutters, one where we are not risking our lives balancing on a ladder or killing our family time spending our weekends doing the menial. The good news is that there are a few ways to make this chore easier and we have best 3 listed here for you.
The best 3 ways to keep your gutters clean
1. Clean your gutters from the ground. That's right clean them from the ground. There are a number of different devices these days so you no longer need to climb a ladder to those gutters. You may have seen them around, you know the ones, the hose on a long extension pole or the long vacuum extension. Lets look at the pros and cons
Safe - not climbing ladders
Inexpensive - These devices are typically less than the cost of getting someone to clean your gutters for you
Messy - I'm not sure if you have ever used one of the hose attachments. They look great on TV, but let's face it - you spend as much time if not more time cleaning the mess made from all the water going everywhere. Dirt and grime ends up on pathways, windows and people. The vacuum systems seem to be the better option but just try not to get it blocked.
Sore shoulders and arms - Let's face it, balancing and controlling a long pole while you are holding it over your head takes it's toll on your shoulder and arm muscles. Actually, now I think about it, this may actually be a pro (maybe we could ask Commando Steve)
Loosing your weekends - while his method is safer, you still need to spend the time doing it. Which could be better spent at the beach, watching a movie, sipping a Latte or just about any other activity I can think of.
2. Enlist the services of a professional gutter cleaning service - Getting a professional gutter cleaning company to do the job for you is certainly an appealing option. The question is, which company is going to do a good job at a reasonable price?
Safe - There is no doubt getting someone else to clean your gutters is safe
Clean - Getting someone else to do the dirty work is certainly a lot cleaner, particularly if they clean up after themselves
Saves time - Time is precious and in most instances you don't need to be home when the work gets done
Expensive - Professionals cost money! I am not sure if you have gone out and gotten a quote lately, but some of these companies charge many hundreds of dollars each time. Given most homeowners are likely to clean their gutters at least twice a year, this cost can mount up. And this price is only likely to continue to increase over time.
Trusting - This may seem odd to include trust as a con because trust should be a good thing right! Reality is that you may end up using a number of gutter cleaning companies until you find one that is trustworthy. Are you going to get up on a two storey roof and check if they really did the job properly?
Need to remember - Now this may be quite simple for some homeowners. Some of us are well organised and have yearly planners ready to go for all of the necessary jobs that are coming up. But.....most of us are likely to remember to get the gutters clean when it is raining.
3. Not clean your gutters at all - Did we read that right? Yes, why are we still cleaning our gutters in the 21st century? There are a number of great solutions for keeping debris out of your gutters. Gutter guards have been around for some time now and while there are a few versions which can make the problem worse, the right system, installed correctly can provide a cost effective and stress free way to give you back your weekends.
Safe - Once the gutter guard is installed, you no longer need to climb a ladder twice a year or more to clean your gutters. Even better if you get someone else to install the guard for you.
Clean - Gutter guards take away the need to use messy means to get the debris out of your gutters
Cost effective - Sure, the upfront amount can be reasonably expensive, but when installed correctly you can expect 20 years plus of easy gutter maintenance from a good gutter guard system. So while the initial investment may seem like a chunk of cash, the alternatives can be a lot more expensive (imagine the cost of hiring someone to do the job 15 years from now).
Saves time - For the most part, a good gutter guard system allows you to 'set and forget'. Ultimately some small maintenance will be required such as flushing out the gutters from dirt and sediment, but if installed correctly, this process can take minimal time and is often only required to be done every couple of years.
Selecting the right gutter guard company - This can take time. There are a lot of people out there that claim to be experts in gutter guard and unfortunately there are not as many experts as claim to be experts. This is not any different to most other industries, so it is absolutely worth your while to make sure you get this step right. After all, this is a long term investment.
Initial outlay - While a quality solution will prove to be cost effective in the long run, it may be a significant investment initially (click here to find out how much you should expect to pay). If you are currently getting someone to clean your gutters a couple of times a year, a proper gutter guard system may pay for itself in a couple of years. Remember there are finance options available to get these sorts of things done too, its just about finding the right company to do the job.
Can cause more problems - Yes that's right. If a gutter guard system is not installed correctly, it may cause more issues than it solves. A lot of folk out there seem to have the opinion that it is a relatively simple product to install. But, let me tell you from my experience - not just any Joe Blow can do a good job of installing gutter guard. Bad installation practices have unfortunately led to some people proclaiming that gutter guard doesn't work. It all comes down to 'selecting the right gutter guard company'.
So there you have it. The three best ways to keep your gutters clean. While each of the methods has it's own pros and cons, for my money not having to continually enlist the services of a gutter cleaning company or having to do it yourself is the most cost efficient method which will give you the greatest utility and time to do the thing you really want.
If you live in South Australia and are thinking of getting a gutter guard quote or would like some honest advice, get in contact with me today