Stay Safe When Cleaning your Gutters
With all the bright sunshine we’ve been enjoying here in the UK in recent weeks, many of us are out in the garden catching up with outdoor jobs that may have been rained off earlier in the year. One job that needs doing on a regular basis is clearing the gutters and now is a great time to do this task while the gutters are relatively dry – it’s much easier than dealing with the smelly wet leaves and debris. Regular gutter maintenance will prevent water damage to roof and walls of your home and needs to be done regularly to keep the outside of our house spick and span.
However, clearing the gutters can be a difficult and dangerous job so we’re taking a look at what you can do to make sure you don’t come a cropper when clearing the guttering.
First of all you need to make sure you have the right ladder for the job. This will depend on the height of your guttering – a bungalow is obviously the easiest to reach the gutters on and you could find that a tall step ladder is all you need. However, for two storey buildings that are taller, then you’ll probably need a set of extension ladders. If your home is higher than two stories, then we recommend that you call in professionals to get the job done – it may cost you a few pounds, but you can be sure that you’ll be safe.
If you’re using a straight ladder or an extension ladder, then you may like to consider getting a ladder stabiliser to keep the ladder in place while you clear the guttering. There are several types of ladder stabilisers on the market and you’ll need to make sure that the one you buy is suitable for use with the type of ladder you have.
If you’re using a pressure washer to clear out the guttering, then be careful. Pressure washers are quite fierce and, if you’re not prepared for it, the force could cause you to lose your balance and fall.
Don’t over reach as you work – this is one of the most common causes of a fall from a ladder. As a general rule, keep your belt buckle area inside the stiles (uprights) of the ladder at all times. If you need to reach any further, then it’s time to descend and move the ladder along.
Don’t climb too high – if you need to use the top three rungs of a straight ladder or extension ladder, then it’s not tall enough to reach – either choose a longer straight ladder or extend an extension ladder.
Always use heavy duty waterproof gloves when clearing the guttering – they will protect your hands from any sharp debris or rough surfaces.
Keep moving along – the guttering probably extends all around the roof line and you will need to move the ladder frequently so as to avoid over reaching.