How Do I Unclog My Gutters? | High Five Gutters

How Do I Unclog My Gutters?

By High Five Gutters on March 14, 2021

It’s raining outside. Maybe you’re looking out of a window or arriving home from an errand and you notice spilling over the edge of yous of your gutters. Or maybe you notice soil eroded below the gutter. Other telltale are peeling paint and/or dirt on the siding of your home. Any of these can be signs that your gutters are in need of some maintenance.

Those who are handy and unafraid of climbing a ladder may be able to clean their gutters on their own. For the rest of us, it’s recommended that you hire a professional to unclog your gutters. The process takes around 1-2 hours and is a very cost effective way to ensure the longevity or your roof and siding.

Signs of a Clogged Gutter

There are a few obvious signs that your gutters need to be unclogged and cleaned. If you see any of the items below, you should contact a cleaning professional immediately.

  • Water spilling over the edges of your gutter
  • Water spraying like a fountain from gutter seams or elbow joints
  • No water flow from the bottom of downspout extensions
  • Visible soil erosion below the gutters

Any of these items may indicate that you have a blockage somewhere in your gutters. Additional inspection will be needed to confirm whether the blockage exists in the gutter tracks or in your downspout.

Read: Gutter Cleaning Technicians Wanted

Continue on to learn about ways to remove your gutter blockage.

Helpful Cleaning Tools

  • Gutter scoop, an incredibly handy tool to scoop out and remove mud and gunk from your gutter tracks. It’s narrow and can easily fit down into your gutters. Make sure you have a bucket handy to dump the contents after each scoop. Here’s an excellent scooping tool, available on Amazon.
  • Garden hose, a typical garden hose and nozzle will do. Make sure the hose is long enough to reach from the spigot to the area of the roof that you’re cleaning.
  • Bucket, nothing fancy here. Just a plain old Home Depot 5 gallon. You may be hauling this up onto the roof, as well as using it while on your ladder. Make sure the handle is strong or you have some other way to secure the bucket.
  • Leaf blower, this tool is helpful when you’re standing on your roof and the interior gutter tracks are full of leaves. A quick blast from your leaf blower will easily remove most of the debris. The only downfall is that it can be incredibly messy. If you do use a leaf blower for your cleanings, make sure to do a final cleaning pass of the gutter exteriors and house walls. There will be splatters of mud present. You’ll also want to ensure that the ground below the gutters is free from mud and gunk. Here is a great gas powered leaf blower that we recommend.
  • Drum auger, professional cleaning technicians rely on drum augers to clear out heavily clogged downspouts. They work by uncoiling a cable from within a drum canister. As you turn the handle, the cable extends down the drain until it reaches the clog. Standard drum augers have a corkscrew-like attachment at the end to grab and unclog any blockages. You can also purchase sprayer attachments that will spray water jets in multiple directions. These are often attached to gas powered pressure washers. We love the Sewer Jetter 50 Foot Jetsnake pressure washer hose.

Gutter Cleaning Instructions

  1. Gather your tools, making sure to include a bucket, gutter scoop, ladder, and rubber gloves
  2. Evaluate the gutter area, take note of any locations that may require extra cleaning power with a leaf blower or similar
  3. Begin the clean, extend your ladder and begin scooping from one corner of the home to the next. Collect all gunk in your bucket or drop it down onto a tarp on the ground.
  4. Clean out the full length of gutters, including all corners and levels of the home
  5. Clear downspouts, once all the mud is cleared from the gutter tracks, flush the downspouts with water or a drum auger if necessary.
  6. Clean up, make sure to wipe the mud from all gutter exteriors and walls. Also ensure you check the ground below the gutters for mud that may have fallen.

Final Thoughts

With the information from this article, plus a lack of fear of heights, you should be ready to tackle your own gutter cleanings. Make sure that you’re getting up there at lease once per year, preferably in the fall months. And make sure you’re practicing proper ladder safety. If you’re still a bit hesitant to clean out your own gutter systems, we’re more than happy to help you with a quote. Cheers to clear downspouts.