Its’ spring and your gutters have been filling up with debris for a whole year. It is high time to clean them out. Cleaning your gutters is important for many reasons…
First let’s start with the obvious, we want the water to run into the gutter and go where it is supposed to. If the gutter is full of debris this will not happen.
Second, if the gutters back up with water and it sits against the wood behind the gutter it will rot out your fascia board. The gutters will eventually fall off because there will be nothing left to hold them up. Water will eventually find its way behind your siding and up under your shingles and cause all kinds of moisture related problems.
Third, Erosion, the gutters on your house are not just to stop the rain from falling where you don’t want it to fall. By redirecting the water we are preventing erosion of the soil next to your house which will create a place for water to accumulate and eventually make its way into your basement; not wanted.
There are a variety of ways to clean your gutters, if you are good with stilts and have a single story home this is a very good way to reach them to pick out the trash. But if you are like most people a ladder will do just fine. There are a variety of hose attachments available on the market for cleaning your gutters; most are available at your local home improvement stores.
There are also many products made to prevent debris from getting into your gutters. There are screens, sponges, and shields that are very good ideas but usually don’t work so hot. The best thing to do is leave off the add-ons and just clean out your gutters each spring. Most of these products will just get blocked up by the debris, or prevent the water from entering your gutters at all, and you will be cleaning them anyway.
There are also many attachments for the ends of your downspouts, from roll out ones with sprinkler holes in them to regular old pieces of concrete. The attachments are designed to prevent erosion and letting the water pool up next to your house. It is very important to get the water away from your foundation.
Some people catch the rain water from their gutters in a barrel and use it for many household uses. If you are starting plants indoors for your garden this makes excellent water for them. Water your pets with this water. It is very good water even though you wouldn’t drink it, your pets won’t mind. Use it to wash your car, water your garden or your flower pots.
Saving water is becoming a GREEN thing to do.