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Maintain Your Gutters With These DIY Cleaning Solutions

March 18th, 2019 | No Comments »

Clearing out GuttersAre your home’s gutters looking a little the worse for wear these days? Without periodic cleaning, old gutters can become covered in dirt, debris and black streaks that detract from their original appearance. The good news is, there are a few DIY cleaning solutions you can use to keep your gutters looking their very best.

Use TSP-PF to Your Advantage

Do you have some deck or siding cleaner tucked away in your garage? Check the label and see if you can find the letters “TSP-PF” on it. TSP-PF stands for “trisodium phosphate-phosphate free,” and it means that the cleaner is capable of degreasing and cleaning surfaces without harming the environment. Take one cup of this cleaner and mix it with one quart of Clorox bleach along with three quarts of hot water. Apply it to your gutters with a rag or brush to wipe away dirt and mildew stains.

Try Cream of Tartar

The spice rack in your kitchen might not seem like a logical place to look for gutter cleaner, but cream of tartar can make gutters shine when used properly. Take cream of tartar and mix it with water to create a thick paste. Then, apply that paste to the outside of your gutters and buff it with a rag before letting it sit for a little while. After about 30 minutes, hose your gutters down. They should look a little brighter after being treated with your homemade cleaning paste.

Remove Dirt and Grime With White Vinegar

In addition to cleaning the outside of your gutters with a DIY cleaning solution, you should be sure to clean their interior as well. Scoop out any dirt, leaves, stick, and other debris before pouring a solution of warm water and white vinegar into your gutters. Plug your downspouts to prevent the solution from washing away and allow it to sit in your gutters for about an hour. Then simply drain your gutters once the hour is over and hose them down.

At Bell Seamless Gutters, we can install gutter guards on your existing gutters to prevent them from getting clogged with dirt and debris in the first place. To learn more, feel free to give us a call at our toll-free number or contact us online today!

 

Tiger Stripe Gutter Stains: Causes and Removal Tips

January 7th, 2019 | No Comments »

Cleaning Old GuttersDo the gutters on your home have unsightly vertical streaks running down them? These stains are commonly known as tiger stripes, and they are often caused by some combination of tree sap, chimney fumes and environmental pollution.

Removing tiger stripes from your gutters may be challenging, but they can be cleaned effectively if you’re willing to put in the time and work. Here are a few tips that will help you make those streaks a thing of the past.

Start by using a non-abrasive detergent cleaner.

The first thing to do when you notice tiger stripes on your gutters is attempt to clean them with a non-abrasive detergent cleaner. There are a number of companies that manufacture cleaning products designed specifically for gutters. These products can usually help you eliminate tiger streaks right away as long as they haven’t built up on your gutters over the course of many years.

Try a heavy-duty cleaner for tough tiger streaks.

In cases where tiger stripes have had more time to develop, a non-abrasive cleaner may not be powerful enough to remove them completely. In that case, you’ll need to try using something that packs a bit more of a punch. A cleaning product like Fantastik All Purpose Cleaner might just do the trick.

Avoid cleaning your gutters with anything that might damage them.

You may have to get creative to remove tiger stripes from your gutters, but you shouldn’t use anything that might damage them in the process. Avoid ammonia, paint removers or anything that has potentially-harmful solvents in it, for example. You should also use soft brush or a cloth rather than metal brushes to avoid scratching your gutters while cleaning them.

If you’re tired of trying to restore your dingy old gutters, we can help you replace them with modern, durable seamless gutters that will improve your home’s curb appeal and look great for many years to come. Give us a call or contact us online to get started today!

Common Causes of Overflowing Gutters

August 27th, 2018 | No Comments »

Heavy RainHave you noticed that your gutters occasionally overflow during periods of heavy rain? If so, it could be because your area was simply subjected to too much rain for your gutters to handle. Every now and then, a torrential downpour may overwhelm your home’s gutter system and make it hard for it to keep up. If your gutters are regularly overflowing, however, you could have another problem on your hands.

You don’t have enough downspouts

If you find that your gutters seem to overflow every time it rains, it could be an indication that you don’t have enough downspouts to discharge water away from your home. If rainwater can’t escape through your downspouts, it will start to pour out of your gutters instead. Adding new downspouts can increase the total volume of water your gutter system is able to handle.

Your gutters are clogged with leaves, dirt, and other debris.

If you don’t maintain your gutters and clean them out at least once or twice a year, leaves, dirt and other debris can accumulate in them and block the flow of water. Ultimately, these clogs can send water pouring out over the sides of your gutters when it rains. Keeping your gutters clean and clog-free is a great way to prevent them from overflowing in the future.

Your downspouts have something stuck in them.

If your gutters are all clear but they’re still overflowing when it rains, it could be a sign of clogged downspouts. Leaves and dirt can build up inside your downspouts and render them useless, too. The good news is, you can easily test your downspouts with a hose and then clear them out accordingly.

Having trouble keeping debris out of your gutters and downspouts? Gutter guards can help by blocking this debris and keeping your gutters clear all season long. Give us a call at our toll-free number today to learn more!

Keep These Ladder Safety Tips in Mind When Cleaning Gutters

April 16th, 2018 | No Comments »

Cleaning Gutters on LadderGetting ready to do some spring gutter cleaning? If so, there’s a good chance you’ll need to use a ladder. But before you climb a ladder to clean your gutters, there are a few basic safety guidelines you should keep in mind to prevent accidents and injuries.

Stay off the ladder when you don’t feel well or when the weather is bad.

If you’re tired or dizzy on the day you plan to clean out your gutters, you should consider postponing the job for another day. You may be more susceptible to losing your balance and falling off the ladder when you’re not feeling well. You should also stay off the ladder whenever it’s windy or stormy outside; accidents are more likely to happen in inclement weather.

Wear slip-resistant shoes.

It’s also important to be mindful of your choice of footwear when climbing a ladder. You should never wear sandals, unlaced sneakers or any shoes with slippery bottoms. It’s best to wear a pair of sneakers with soles that are advertised as being slip-resistant. This will help you maintain a secure footing as you move up and down the ladder.

Inspect your ladder for signs of wear and tear.

Make sure your ladder is in good working order before cleaning out your gutters. Inspect all of its joints and moving parts to make sure they’re securely in place. You should also check the ladder’s weight restrictions to make sure it can support the weight of both you and your cleaning equipment.

Place your ladder on firm, level ground.

The condition of the ground you place your ladder on is just as important as the condition of the ladder itself. The ground supporting your ladder should firm, level and dry. You should also recruit a friend or family member to stand at the bottom of the ladder and keep an eye out for signs of trouble as you climb.

If you’re tired of cleaning debris out of your gutters every spring and fall, you might want to consider investing in gutter guards as well! To learn more about how gutter guards can help keep twigs, leaves and other refuse out of your gutters, give us a call or contact us online today!

Getting Your Gutters Ready for Spring

March 22nd, 2018 | No Comments »

Rainy DayIt might not feel like it with all the snow we’ve had lately, but spring weather will be here before we know it. Those famous April showers can make spring a particularly demanding time of year for your gutter system, so it’s important to make sure your gutters are in good shape before the rainy season sets in. Let’s start by looking for signs of damage left over from the winter.

Inspect for Damage

Snow and ice is very heavy, so keep an eye out for gutter sections that might have gotten weighed down and pulled away from their fascia boards during the winter. Look for gutter brackets that might be rusted or broken as well. Minor gutter damage can often be repaired with a few new brackets and screws, but more extensive damage may require you to replace the affected gutter sections.

Redirect Downspouts

Your gutters won’t do much good if their downspouts aren’t functioning properly. Make sure all downspouts are still securely fasted to your gutters and pointed away from your home’s foundation. Ideally, all your downspouts should discharge on a downward slope at least six feet away from your foundation. If your home is on a septic system, try to avoid discharging water into your drain field, as this can cause flooding during periods of heavy rainfall.

Clear Debris

Finally, spring is a great time to clear any debris out of your gutters that might have accumulated during the fall and winter. While you’re cleaning out your gutters, look for any signs of roof damage that might need to be repaired in the near future as well. This way, you won’t have to worry about leaks causing water damage in your home this spring.