Gutter Clearing

If you are in decent shape you may be able to clear the gutters of your house with ease. Gather several pieces of equipment that will make the work a cinch. Start when muck causes gutters to overflow or after all leaves on trees around your property, including trees exceptionally taller than your house up to 50 feet away, falls off the trees. You will need a ladder that reaches at least just below the gutters, waterproof boots and gloves, waterproof clothing, a hand held scoop about the width of the gutter, a screwdriver, a long rope, a stiff bristled brush, a scraper or a short handled cultivator, a length of tarp for covering foundation features, some buckets for the debris and a water hose long enough to comfortably reach all sides of the gutter system.

Start by inspecting the down spouts at ground level for cogs of debris. Take the screwdriver or cultivator and clear the opening of the downspout. Next place the ladder against the house just below, not onto, the gutter (the weight of the ladder while standing on it can warp, bend, damage or dislodge the gutter). If you damage the gutter then you will have another project on your hands. Never work from a ladder alone, at least make sure someone is there on the property that knows you will be on the ladder. They should check on you every 10-15 minutes if they will not be helping you. Always climb the ladder empty-handed and two-handed. Avoid skipping rungs while ascending and descending the ladder.

Cover the foundation features with the tarp and place a few buckets on the ground for collecting debris from which you will drop from the roof. Place the small tools in the bucket. Run the rope over and through the next to top rung of the ladder. Take the end of the rope that you fed through the ladder and tie it to the handle of one of the buckets. Once you get to the top pull the bucket up and tie off or secure the other end of the rope. Starting at the top of one of the down spouts and clear it of all debris. Now clear reachable debris from the rest of the gutter. Never overextend yourself while on a ladder, or else you could fall. Avoid leaning your torso beyond the outer edges of the ladder. After you finish clearing a section move the ladder down where you can comfortably reach the end of the portion you just cleared and clear another section. Repeat this procedure until you have cleared a section of gutter from downspout to downspout or to where it ends.

Now go and turn on the water. Secure the hose to your belt taking it up and spray the gutter clear of debris toward the downspout of the previously cleared area. The water and debris should flow freely down the spout, if not use a plumbers snake or a relatively long and firm instrument to possibly clear the spout. Repeat this along these previous procedures along the entire length of the gutter. Remember to remove, spray and replace all downspout screens if possible.

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