Gutter Cleaning - Consequences of a Blocked Gutter System
Gutter cleaning is a necessary - albeit, grueling - part of home maintenance. Gutters are designed to divert rainwater away from your home. But if they're full of leaves and debris, water can run underneath your house, flooding your basement or damaging your foundation.
About Gutter Cleaning Services
If the idea of spending all day on a ladder doesn't sound appealing, you can hire a professional gutter cleaning service to do the work for you. Most services will first clean the gutters by hand, and then use a leaf blower to remove any remaining debris. Some services will even tighten any loose gutters to prevent excess water from falling behind them.
The best times to hire a gutter cleaning service are late fall, after the leaves have fallen, and late spring, after the pollen has settled. Professionals typically recommend having your gutters cleaned twice a year, although some people can get away with less and some require more. If you live in a heavily wooded area, twice a year might not be enough.
Gutter Cleaning Service Prices
Professional gutter cleaning is pretty affordable. Most services charge anywhere from $150 to $300 for a complete clean. Consider the cost an investment in preventative maintenance - the consequences of not cleaning your gutters could be tens of thousands of dollars in damage to your basement or foundation.
Beware of gutter cleaning services that advertise too-good-to-be-true prices of $50 or $100. You can easily find these services on Craigslist, but chances are the company is not insured. This means that if a worker falls off your roof, you could be liable for damages. It's not worth the risk to save $100.
Tips for Hiring a Gutter Cleaning Service
- Request a quote - Be sure to ask for a quote before signing any kind of contract. Find out if there's a price difference between a first-time visit and ongoing maintenance.
- Get proof of insurance - Ask the company to provide proof that they have worker's compensation insurance. Anyone can say they have it.
- Check references - Ask the company for references to find out if other customers have been pleased with the service. Or, check the company's record with consumer organizations such as the Better Business Bureau.
- Shop around - Request quotes from several different companies to compare prices and services. You don't have to go with the first company you stumble across.
Author: Ashley Smith