While there is seemingly little to get excited about during a Melbourne winter, for those that like to look after their roof it is a great time to get one pressing job out of the way, and that’s gutter cleaning and gutter maintenance.
Why is winter in Melbourne a good time to tackle gutter cleaning and maintenance? For starters, at this time of the year most deciduous trees have already shed their leaves. And if you have deciduous trees near your home, chances are they’ve shed some of them on your roof and in your gutters. In addition, while we don’t necessarily get the most rain in winter, we do generally get the greatest number of rainy days.
Why gutter maintenance is a necessity
One of the issues with Melbourne gutters is that if you’re the homeowner, you can’t really see what’s going on inside them until you get the ladder out and have a good look. They could be clean, or they might be full of leaves and other debris and ready to cause an issue on the next rainy day.
With gutters being out of sight and out of mind, it’s easy to forget that they are a vital part of your roof’s water drainage system. All rain that lands on your roof ends up in your gutters and then flows to your downpipes. This system is simple and works brilliantly under normal circumstances, but if you have a single blockage your home can get water damage and you’re then faced with potentially expensive repairs.
Before you schedule in time this weekend to conduct some gutter maintenance on your Melbourne home (see tips below), remember that this is not a job for everyone. Working at heights can be risky. Falls are Australia’s largest contributor to hospitalised injuries and a leading cause of death. There were close to 6000 hospitalisations due to fall from ladders in Australia in the 2019-20 financial year alone 1.
Tips for gutter maintenance
If you are confident and ready to do the job yourself, here’s a simple process to follow to ensure the job is done correctly:
- Make sure your ladder is stable and you always have someone on the ground spotting you.
- Preferably the ladder should be anchored. If this isn’t possible, have the person who is spotting you hold the ladder at the bottom.
- When you are up a ladder, never try to reach too far. This can cause the ladder to slip or you to fall off.
- Always wear a pair of heavy-duty gloves to protect your hands from sharp edges and a sturdy pair of boots.
- Clean out every section of your gutter, ensuring you pick up all, or at least most, leaves, debris and any mud that may have accumulated. You can use scrapers, scoopers, brushes and other items to help.
- Once clean, use a hose to run water into and through your gutter. This will help to flush out any remaining debris that you can’t pick up and check the system for pooling or leaks.
How regularly should you have the gutters of your Melbourne home cleaned?
This can depend somewhat on your home and its surrounds, particularly how many trees and tall shrubs you have in your vicinity.
As a general rule, however, we recommend carrying out gutter maintenance of your Melbourne home twice a year. You could do it more regularly than this, but generally every six months is adequate.
Why getting professionals to conduct gutter maintenance is a good idea
As highlighted above, gutter maintenance can be a risky job, particularly on homes that are single level. So, if you live in Melbourne, it’s time to call in the professional at Oates Roofing Maintenance.
By using Oates you can trust that the job will be done correctly, thoroughly and safely. We have more than 40 years’ experience in roofing, are fully licensed, insured and certified for working from heights.
As well as cleaning your gutters and downpipes and checking their condition, while we’re doing the work we’ll also keep any eye out for any other potential problems with your roof. Early detection, and remediation, can be a key to prevent costly damage down the track.
Remember, too, that gutter maintenance is only one of the services we offer. We also fix roof leaks, replace downpipes and gutters, conduct roof maintenance and cleaning, inspect and restore roofs, and carry out complete reroofing. We even can remove vermin from your roof.
1 Source: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare