When you have debris in your gutters that is hard-packed, such as stacks of muddy or mildewed leaves or layers of dirt, you can have a difficult time removing all the gunk when your gutters get full. Gutters that are clogged cannot successfully drain water from your home and often overflow, allowing large amounts of moisture to spill over onto your sidewalks or the front of your house where it can then seep into your foundation and cause flooding issues. As you prepare to have your gutters cleaned, here are 3 ways you can loosen stubborn debris so it's easier to remove.
Moisten the area
If you have a lot of dirt or mud in your gutters, you can moisten the area by taking a garden hose and running the water along the dirty areas with a gentle stream of water. As the debris gets wet it will loosen up, allowing you to then wipe out the areas with rags, a long brush, or even an outdoor broom. You may need to repeat the process several times to remove more stubborn debris, such as clay-based soil.
Use a shop vacuum
An indoor/outdoor shop vac can help pull up larger filth, such as piles of pine needles, broken pine cones, leaves, and other debris. Use a shop vac to suck up as much gutter grime as you can before using a wet cloth to wipe up the rest. If the debris is entirely dried into your gutters and hard to suck up with air pressure, moisten the area lightly first to help break up what you are dealing with and then use the shop vac to suck up the sludge.
Employ a power washer
A power washer uses intense water pressure at high speeds to remove a great variety of stains and grime, such as paint chips and other stuck-on messes in your gutters. Before using a power washer to clean your gutters, remove as much of the blockage as you can by hand and make sure your gutters are securely affixed to your roof so you don't accidentally loosen its hold with the water pressure. Use the lowest setting to start, increasing your pressure to get up hard-packed debris as needed.
Clean gutters not only look great, they function more successfully in removing moisture from your home. Make sure to clean your gutters regularly to avoid blockage that can allow water to get into your foundation. For more information, talk to a professional like Mile High Seamless Gutters, Inc.