Rain gutters and downspouts must be clear of leaves and debris, if not, the outlets will dam up and water will fill the gutters. They can back up and overflow. If left unattended over time gutters can pull away from their mountings. Pools of water can rot wooden gutters and rust metal ones.
You don't appreciate gutters until they don't work, then you realize the importance of having clean gutters. When functioning properly, rain water is rerouted down the surface of the roof, in order to drain it away from the house. You protect siding, windows, doors, and foundations from water damage and help prevent flooding.
Customers inquire as to what is the best time to clean gutters. Here is what you should consider. It doesn't take much to clog the gutters. You might need to clean them more than once each year. You want them clean before the first heavy rain. You might have to clean them again, after the leaves from the trees surrounding your home have finished falling.
Early fall - remove leaves that have fallen early to keep your guttters flowing freely.
End of fall or early winter - you want to make sure everything has been properly cleaned.
Spring - most trees drop seedlings and dead twigs this time of year. It's the best time to inspect your gutters for any damage that may have occured during the winter.
Small Debris and Flow Rates
If gutters don't have a decent pitch, small debris is often left in the bottom of the gutter to clollect. The water flowing down to the downspout doesn't really have enough momentum to clear out this debris.
Some of you have gutter guards. They can prevent debris from getting into the spouts. Allow for more cleaning time. It takes extra time to unscrew and re screw them in place.
Hard to Handle Situations
Some of you have drain spouts that lead directly underground. Many can be detached at ground level, in order to reach any backed up debris caught inside. Some have no way of accessing the clog. These can be flushed out and maintained, but occasionally if they're clogged up with immovable debris, we are not equipped to clean these particular downspouts in this situation.
What you can do to keep an eye on the gutters.
You might want to climb up a ladder yourself a few times a year and just visually access the overall conditon of your gutters or you might ask the window cleaners to take a look when they are cleaning the windows. Sometimes there is just one spot that needs overseeing. Elliot goes up his ladder, that he keeps on the side of his home, once a week during the times there are heavy rains. Sometimes you have an oak tree, for example, that is prone to let go of a lot of leaves continually. It only takes a few to stop the water flow.
Hope this info helps keep you on top of maintaining your home.