Five Common Problems Homeowners Experience When Cleaning Their Own Gutters

Many homeowners are keen to complete as much maintenance as they can to reduce their costs. While this is an understandable and wise decision in some cases, other types of maintenance are best left to professionals.

For example, pressure washing a brick pathway is generally a task at which homeowners are likely to succeed. As long as you are careful and do a minimal amount of research, you are unlikely to damage your home or injure anyone. By contrast, gutter cleaning is a potentially dangerous undertaking that requires training to complete safely and effectively.

Homeowners that attempt to clean their gutters run into a variety of problems, but the following five are especially common.

They Crush Gutter Sections

Gutters are not strong enough to withstand a great deal of pressure, and many amateur gutter cleaners fail to appreciate just how delicate they are. For example, simply leaning a ladder against the gutter in a weak spot can cause it to collapse partially. 

They Damage the Connective Hardware  

Gutters should never be forced to support more than a few pounds of weight. Unfortunately, many people make the mistake of using the gutter as a handhold when moving on the ladder. This type of stress often damages the connective hardware that attaches the gutter to your home.

They Injure Wildlife

Clogged and leaf-filled gutters often harbor squirrels, birds, lizards and frogs. Unfortunately, these animals often remain hidden from view until it is too late, and they become injured in the cleaning process. By comparison, skilled professionals are trained to note the subtle signs that may indicate the presence of animals, allowing them to work carefully around the critters.

The Injure Themselves

By its very nature, gutter cleaning requires you to work high off the ground. Even if your home is only a single story, you will need to climb a ladder to access the gutters. Falls are the leading (and most serious) cause of injury among amateur gutter cleaners, but cuts and lacerations are also common.

They Puncture the Gutter Wall

While trying to remove stubborn material in the bottom of the gutter, many people end up poking a hole in the gutter, leading to costly and difficult repairs. Left unrepaired, such holes can cause the water to drip onto your home. This often leads to unsightly water marks, and eventually, this constant trickle of water in an improper location will undermine your home's foundation. Contact a company like Mr. Gutter for more information or assistance.