Unblocking gutters and downpipes

Cleaning your gutters is not very glamorous, but it does a vital job in protecting your house. By redirecting rainwater away from your home and into the drains, guttering protects your exterior walls and prevents the surrounding ground from becoming too soft with water. For these main reasons, it’s very important to make sure your guttering and downpipes are well maintained and kept free of any clogs or blockages.

How to maintain your gutters

As we all know, gutters can quickly fill up with leaves, twigs, moss and dirt and other debris. If left unchecked this can result in gutter problems. Avoiding issues is very easy – but it will require you to get your hands (or gloves) a little dirty.

All you have to do is, every few months (or more regularly in autumn) pop on some waterproof gloves, rest a ladder against the side of your house and check your gutters for any obstructions. Take a plastic bag with you up the ladder and scoop out all the leaves and moss and twigs and general grot that you come across.

If all that sounds like too much hard work, you could of course install gutter and/or downpipe guards. Our team are able to install gutter guards for you should you require.

How to clear a blocked downpipe

If your downpipe does get blocked, the water in your gutters will not be able to access your drains. It will instead have no option but to spill out over the side of your guttering which in turn can damage your bricks and home leading to damp issues. To clear a blocked down-pipe simply:

1. Find a length of stiff wire
2. Put the wire into the blocked downpipe and work it back and forth to dislodge the debris.
3. Do this until you’ve created a hole through the middle of the blockage and out the other side
4. Take a hosepipe and run water into the downpipe from above, the water will flow through the small hole and help clear the debris

Last of all, it’s always important to take care whilst undertaking any works on a ladder. Needless to say, all our tips are all simple and easy to complete, but any activities off the ground carry risks.

Safety first! Ensure your ladder is always safely footed on level ground and, ideally, get someone else to help keep the ladder steady whilst you clear or unblock your guttering. If you cannot climb a ladder or you think the block is too significant, please contact our team who would be happy to help clear your gutters for you.