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How to Thoroughly Clean the Outside of Your Gutters

How to Thoroughly Clean the Outside of Your Gutters


Keeping the exterior of your house clean is vital to maintaining its appearance. While walls, windows and doors are crucial, having dirty guttering can severely damage the look of a property. In this guide from Coastal Drains, we’ll be exploring how to clean the outside of your gutters, whether from a ladder or from the ground.

Why Should You Clean Your Gutters?

Dirty gutters can affect the look of your home, particularly in the case of white guttering. While it’s vital to clean the interior of your gutters, keeping the outside clean should also be a priority. Whether it’s mould, dirt, or other debris, having a discoloured, uneven and worn-looking guttering network will damage the look of your home. 

While homeowners will normally want to keep their house looking nice regardless, this is especially important if you are looking to sell or rent a property. The visible exteriors of your house being unappealing could damage the curb appeal, especially if the house is situated within a road that has otherwise clean guttering.

How to Clean the Outside of Your Gutters

When looking to clean the outside of your own gutter system, you’ll have two options, cleaning from a ladder or from the ground. Cleaning from a ladder can be more easily accomplished with household items, while cleaning from the ground is easier, safer, and will require specialist equipment. To find out more about cleaning the inside of your gutters, read our handy guide. We also have a look at gutter cleaning tools including leaf blowers and gutter vacuums.

Cleaning the Outside of Your Gutters From a Ladder

Ladder Against Gutter

If you can directly access your gutters to clean them by hand it can be a simple, if time-consuming process to return their exterior to its sparkling best. This can either be accomplished from a ladder, or from a flat roof if you have safe access. When using a ladder safely is crucial, and you should never reach beyond a safe distance to clean. 

This means you will need to descend and reposition the ladder in order to cover the breadth of your guttering. You’ll need to use a mixture applied to the gutters with a scrubbing brush. If you have gutter guards you can also clean these. As these mixtures can be harmful, it’s important to use safety equipment like gloves, a mask, and goggles. Here are the three main cleaning solutions used:

  • Cream of Tartare: A cooking ingredient, cream of tartar can be mixed with water to create a potent cleaning agent for gutters. You’ll need to mix them into a paste-like consistency and cover the gutter exteriors with the paste, using a little elbow grease, before washing it off with a garden hose.
  • White Wine Vinegar: Vinegar is used in a variety of DIY cleaning solutions, and will also perform on gutter exteriors. Simply mix with warm water and scrub onto the outside of your drains, rinsing them with a hose after an hour.
  • Bleach and Detergent: While this mix is dangerous to human contact, and protection should be used, it can be effective against dirt. Mixing detergent, bleach, and water and scrubbing it onto your gutters, before washing it with a hose should remove all dirt and mould. This could be needed in the case of white gutters, where anything less than spotless will show easily.

Cleaning the Outside of Your Gutters From the Ground

A Coastal Drains worker cleaning hospital gutters with a long reach pole vacuum

If looking to clean your gutters from the ground level you will probably need to use a pressure washer, which can be rented rather than purchased to save on money. These devices will spray water with high pressure, effectively removing dirt across your house and garden. 

If your gutters are too high for you to reach with a pressure washer or ladder, then you will need to hire a professional gutter cleaner. Cleaning from the ground will be quicker and safer, without needing to reposition a ladder. However, the cost of hiring the power washer is worth considering, compared to a ladder which many will already own. There are some garden hose attachments that will offer greater pressure, but these will lack the power or reach of a pressure washer.

Expert Gutter Cleaning Across Sussex

coastal drains van in brighton

Coastal Drains offers professional gutter cleaning, with our skilled team able to both remove leaves and other debris from the inside of your gutters and carefully clean their exterior. We can also perform maintenance and repairs to your gutters. Our team is available for quick callouts, and all work we do is covered by a low-price guarantee. We have earned a reputation for friendly staff, thorough work, and competitive pricing, with a five-star rating on Checkatrade. 
If you are looking to have the outside of your gutters professionally cleaned, contact Coastal Drains today.