How often do you need to clean your roof gutters? At least once a year or better still twice a year and not only that, what’s the point of cleaning out your gutters if you don’t clean the roof off first. So clean your gutters at least once a year and clean the roof off first.
By regular cleaning of gutters you will cut down on the maintenance of your roof guttering why is that you ask? By leaving a build-up of leaves and silt, most homes in Australia will have at least one gum tree overhanging or around the home, these have a highly acidic effect on galvanized coated steel guttering causing premature ageing and the need for replacement or repair many years sooner than they would have normally been needed to be replaced or repaired. Then there is the problem of silt built up – the silt that builds up in your guttering is also corrosive to your roof guttering.
WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO CLEAN YOUR ROOF GUTTERING
You are most probably better off getting a professional roofer who advertises for gutter cleaning services. Number one you won’t have to do it yourself and risk falling, number two when he cleans the roof he will be able to see and repair any broken tiles that may have been broken by falling branches etc, even small branches can break roof tiles.
SO YOU WANT TO DO YOUR GUTTER CLEANING YOURSELF, WHAT’S THE BEST WAY
Get yourself a good blower – Bunnings sell a beauty for $49 the brand name is Ozito it is very powerful, blow the roof off starting from top to bottom doing 4 courses of tiles at a time then do the roof gutters then you will have to blow clean around the house. Blowing will remove all the rubbish off the roof and out of the valleys and gutters, however we reiterate we do suggest you get a professional to do the job, for your own safety.
You could hand clean with gutter cleaning tools then a good flush clean with the hose however this is a time consuming option, however is another good way of maintaining your roof gutters and protecting gutters from rust and corrosion.
GUTTER CLEANING NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN
When installing gutter guards or screens do not be fooled into thinking your gutters will never need to be cleaned again when it comes to gutter guards and screens never say never again. Some gutter guard installers claim “you will never need to clean your gutters again” this statement is simply not true.
THERE ARE MANY TYPES OF GUTTER GUARDS
Gutter guards are a great way of keeping the large debris from the gutter floor such as leaves and large twigs etc, however they do nothing to exclude the silt and some do not allow sunlight into the gutter allowing moss to flourish in the silt. Fine silt, dusts and small seeds will go through anything. Some gutter guards are made so permanent with screw fixing, siliconing or gluing that it is impossible to remove them for cleaning. The work involved in removing gutter guards that could be removed would be far too consuming to consider.
REMEMBER GUTTER GUARDS ARE A GREAT WAY OF KEEPING LEAVES, TWIGS AND OTHER TREE DEBRIS OUT OF YOUR GUTTERING
However, none of them do anything to keep the silt out of roof gutters. Some silts are even soluble and will collect on the base of the gutter floor and aggregate.
I DEFINITELY DO NOT RECOMMEND ANY TYPE OF PERMANENTLY FIXED GUTTER GUARD
Some gutter guard companies will tell you of the silt problem – most won’t. When purchasing gutter guards do not get fooled into thinking your gutter will never have to be cleaned again.
There is also another problem that can come from metal gutter guards which in general are the best type of gutter guard. Most gutter guards are made from a BHP metal called zincalume the problem that can ensue from this is, zincalume is not compatible with galvanizing. In other words there is a chemical reaction between the two metals causing the galvanized coating to rust and corrode. So where is the problem – if they use a zincalume gutter guard and your gutters are on an older home and they are galvanized – you are going to have a lot of corroded guttering long before its due date.
THE PROBLEM WITH FLUSHING SILT DOWN DOWNPIPES DUE TO HAND CLEANING OR HAVING GUTTER GUARDS INSTALLED
Silt should never (never) be flushed down downpipes. This is one of the most compromising situations for increasing the possibility of stormwater blockages.
By flushing silt, muck, seeds and very small gumnuts constantly down the downpipes and if you do not have gutter guards all the debris that falls to the gutter, there is the absolute possibility of the downpipe becoming blocked rock solid from silt and germinating seeds, sometimes these are so blocked that they cannot be cleaned out and need to be replaced (replacement downpipe cost around $280 or more). Even worse stormwater pipes becoming blocked by silt and rooted plants, this can sometimes be quickly remedied by a plumber with a quick machine clean (rarely under $300) however can quite often cost thousands of dollars for the digging up and replacement of concrete and drainage pipes.
WHAT DO I RECOMMEND YOU DO ABOUT GUTTER GUARDS
Don’t do it. Any gutter guard that is worth getting is going to cost you quite a bit of money, so what I suggest that is best for you in the long run is to get your gutters cleaned thoroughly at least once every year by a reputable gutter cleaner or roofer. They will remove all the leaves, twigs and silt, this is the best way to maintain your guttering in a good state for many decades.
Advantages of just cleaning your gutters periodically – No lump sum for gutter guards – properly maintained guttering will mean gutter will last many years longer.
Best ways to clean guttering – either use blower or vacuum (vacuum will have to be done with a commercial vacuum) – block downpipes – blow the whole roof clean then blow all guttering clean then remove downpipe block and blow out downpipes – by blocking downpipes whilst doing roof and gutter clean allows all silt to be blown or vacuumed away without allowing any silt to enter the downpipes.
You will save more money by keeping your gutters clean with a periodic maintenance clean. What would offer you more value for your money than gutter guard is an effective roof ventilation system for the comfort and health of your home.
Universal Tile Ventilators have the best systems in the world for roofspace ventilation.