Colorado Seamless Gutters has served Denver and its surrounding areas for over twenty years. In that time, we’ve seen gutters clogged or dirtied with almost any substance one could imagine. We know gutter cleaning can be a messy, dangerous job, but someone has to do it, and more often than not, that someone is you. If you’ve been struggling with dirty or clogged gutters containing the same detritus every winter, read on. We’re going to cover a few of the items guiltiest of messing up your gutters.
Suspect #1: Leaves and Twigs
Leaves seem innocent – they simply float down and make themselves at home in your gutter. One or two leaves aren’t a big deal, you think, so you leave them for a weekend or two while you complete other chores. Soon though, leaves pile up in a narrow space, making them harder to remove. If you have twigs, branches that dropped from trees, leaf stems, or other small wood pieces, it may take even longer to clean the gutter because you have to pick them out.
When dealing with this suspect, wear gloves to avoid getting splinters. If possible, use a leaf blower or similar tool so you can stay on the ground, avoiding ladder accidents. Try to rid your gutters of leaves on a dry day; leaves stick to metal gutters once rain arrives.
Suspect #2: Ice
Colorado is known for its snow. In fact, humorists say our alternative state motto is, “If you don’t ski, don’t bother.” This can be bad news for homeowners, though, because snow often turns to ice and forms ice dams. Ice dams often cause water to seep past gutters and fascia, causing severe water damage in your home like stained ceilings, leaks, and other issues. Basements and attics are particularly vulnerable. If an ice dam isn’t taken care of, its weight can even cause the roof to cave in.
When dealing with an ice dam, do not go onto the roof yourself. Either hire a contractor to remove it, or try to remove it from the ground or a safe height with a roof rake. If this is not possible, try ice-melting tablets available at hardware stores.
Suspect #3: Dirt and Debris
Dirt is perhaps the most common suspect on this list. Again, it looks harmless, but too much dirt can clog your gutters beyond repair, especially if you’ve experienced heavy rain during the fall and winter. Dirt also attracts other detritus such as worms, birds, and insects, so it’s crucial to eliminate it fast. The amount of dirt in your gutters will determine how you clean them. If your gutters aren’t clogged, you can use a garden hose or a wet/dry vacuum. If they are clogged, however, you may need to clean them by hand. For that, you’ll need to scrape out the debris in small chunks with a garden trowel or gutter scoop. Wear heavy gloves and make sure there’s someone nearby to spot you on the ladder or help in case of a fall.
If your gutters are beyond fixing or cleaning yourself, we can help. Contact us today!