Regular maintenance is the key to keeping your home drain system intact. Additionally, clean, and well-maintained gutters add to your home’s value. If your gutters are clogged with debris such as leaves and twigs the rain will not run off or drain properly.


It is important to make sure that the rain does not spill over the top of your drain and on your foundation. This can cause damage to the home’s foundation over time. Here are a few tips to help you maintain your gutters properly without causing any accidents:

Clean at least twice a year

Most home improvement experts suggest that you clean your gutters twice yearly. Particularly in fall after all the leaves have fallen from the surrounding trees, as well as in the Spring. Though, this is just a suggestion. You can do a random inspection and use your judgment.

Have tools ready before beginning

When performing gutter maintenance, one needs to make sure they have all the materials needed before starting work. It is not advisable to stop in the midst of a task to hunt for a tool.

Do not use a hose right away, It is also not advisable to clean the gutters by flushing them with a garden hose. This might cause the downspout to clog. Gutters should be cleaned when they are dry, and the hose should be used to flush out any remaining debris.

Work from top to bottom

When you clean, you typically want to start at the top and work your way down. The reason is simple, debris from the roof will eventually end up in the gutters. Depending on your level of comfort clean any leaves, twigs, or other debris off the roof with an old broom or a leaf blower. Pitch all debris down into the yard or collect them. Once the roof is clean of debris, start on the gutters next.

Using a narrow putty knife or trowel, gently peel any debris out of the gutters. Clean the gutters with a narrow stiff-bristled brush afterward. A wallpaper brush can be used to sweep out debris when the gutters are dry.

Use ladder properly

It is not advisable to lean ladders directly against the gutter. Install ladder guard or a similar product to the gutter can help support the weight of the ladder. Purchasing a ladder stabilizer for added ladder safety is also necessary as the ladder stabilizer locks onto the rungs of the extension ladder. This prevents the ladder from shifting from side to side.

Inspect and necessary repairs

While you are cleaning your gutters inspect them for any rust, holes, or loose nails. Check to ensure that the gutters are securely fastened to the house. Making sure that your gutters have no bent areas, especially if you are preparing your home for sale

Rinse after clearing debris

After removing all the debris from the gutter flush any remaining debris down the gutter and into the downspout with a garden hose. This will also ensure the downspout is not clogged. If you find the water not running freely into the downspout, you can remove it, clean it, and replace it.

Ensure that the water running out of the downspout is properly diverted with the use of a plastic or concrete diverter. You do not want the water emptying on the ground where it will cause erosion and other damages.

Install gutter guard

Gutter guards are immensely popular and solve the problem of having to clean your gutters. Although, they will still need a twice-yearly inspection. For a DIY type installing gutter guards is not a big deal, and it could save you thousands of dollars instead of having it installed by professionals.

Gutter guards can prevent large clumps of debris from entering the gutter. Although, they do not stop much smaller natural debris such as small pieces of bark, twigs, seeds, buds, and evergreen needles. These types of natural matter can also break down over time to form a layer on the guard. The resulting build-up over the gutter guard screening will eventually need to be manually cleaned off. For this reason, some have found that gutter guards cause them more problems.