Gutters are located high and out of sight, so it's easy to forget about them or minimize their importance. Gutters are a key element of roof drainage, a system that keeps the foundation in good condition and eliminates or minimizes other conditions like pests and landscape damage. Learn about gutter cleaning costs, both professionally and DIY, to keep gutters flowing and your home and yard in top condition.
Gutter Cleaning Costs
To clean the gutters on a one-story home with 200 linear feet of gutters will cost $208, on average. Cleaning the gutters on a two-story home with 200 feet of gutters will cost $338.
One-Story Gutter Cleaning Costs
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Gutter cleaning for a one-story house costs from $0.57 to $1.52 per linear foot. The average cost to clean gutters on a one-story house is $1.04 per linear foot.
Two-Story Gutter Cleaning Costs
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For a two-story home, gutter cleaning costs from $1.12 to $2.26 per linear foot. The average cost to clean gutters on a two-story house is $1.69 per linear foot.
Factors That Influence Gutter Cleaning Costs
The length of the gutters and the height of the house are the two main factors when considering gutter cleaning costs.
Length of Gutters
Calculating the length of the gutters is one convenient and relatively simple way to figuring the cost of gutter cleaning. Gutter length can be measured from the ground with a tape measure or a laser measuring device.
Number of Stories
Second story gutters cost about 50 percent more to clean than one-story gutters due to their height, complexity, and added safety concerns.
Additional Gutter Cleaning Costs and Considerations
Though gutter length and house height are the main cost factors, gutter cleaning contractors will also consider:
- Roof pitch: Gutter cleaning services that include roof cleaning may also charge more for steeply pitched roofs.
- Type of gutters: Seamless gutters made from continuous strips of metal are easier to clean because there are no seams to catch and stop debris.
- Downspouts: Cleaning the downspouts may require a surcharge of $5 to $20 per linear foot.
- Debris build-up: Cleaning gutters is easier in temperate seasons such as summer when there is less debris to clean. In some cases, the only debris may be composite shingle granules—simple to wash down the gutters with a power washer.
- Gutter repair: For an extra fee, gutter contractors may perform simple gutter repairs such as replacing gutter guards or reattaching seamed gutters.
4 Signs Your Home Needs Gutter Cleaning
Poor or no water flow, sagging gutters, and visible debris are main signs that your home needs its gutters cleaned.
Downspouts Not Flowing
During rain, the bottoms of the downspouts where they contact the ground should have water outflow. Little or no water outflow means that the gutters or downspouts are clogged. Always check the downspout extensions first.
Water Flowing Over Gutters
During rain, water flowing over the edges of gutters may mean that the gutters or downspouts are blocked and in need of cleaning. It may also mean that the gutters and downspouts are incorrectly sized and in need of replacement.
Gutters sagging from the fascia boards can mean that the gutters are full of debris or water and need to be cleaned. This may also mean that the gutters have sagged over time and need to be re-attached or completely replaced.
Built-up debris in one-story gutters is often visible from the ground. Debris high enough to be seen over the edge of the gutter should be cleaned immediately.
5 Benefits of Gutter Cleaning
Home roof drainage is a linked system that begins with gutters and ends at the end of a downspout extension. Keeping gutters clean is important because they are the first link in this system.
Preserves the Foundation
Clogged gutters send water off the edges of the gutters to the ground around the foundation, increasing soil erosion and possibly leading to subsidence. Gutter cleaning ensures that all roof runoff is directed through the downspouts and ends at safe locations far away from the foundation.
Increases Gutter Lifespan
Gutters have weight and gallon capacities—easily exceeded when the gutters are full of debris and water. One foot of standard 5-inch K-style gutters holds 1.2 gallons of water. So, it's important to keep water moving through the gutters and not building up.
Reduces Landscaping Damage
Maintaining and cleaning gutters prevents gutter overflow, which damages foliage and washes away soil.
Minimizes Pests and Vermin
Keeping the house perimeter drier discourages pests and vermin. Spiders, cockroaches, termites, rats, snakes, and mosquitoes are a few of the pests and vermin that are attracted to standing water.
Keeps the House Cleaner
Eliminating gutter overflow eliminates mud splatter on the house siding. Clean gutters also prevent ice dams from forming in the gutters in cold seasons. Water backs up on top of ice dams and forces its way under the shingles to create leaks in the attic. With clean gutters, the water cannot back up.
DIY vs. Professional Gutter Cleaning
With the right tools and enough time, do-it-yourselfers can clean their own gutters. Professional gutter cleaning is costlier but it is safer and saves a homeowner significant time.
DIY Gutter Cleaning Costs
Do-it-yourself gutter cleaning costs range from no cost if you already own the tools to as much as $300 to $350 to purchase a 20-foot fiberglass extension ladder, the right height for cleaning second-story gutters.
The main advantage to cleaning your own gutters is the cost savings. After the upfront cost for tools, there are few or no ongoing costs.
Professional Gutter Cleaning Costs
Professional gutter cleaning costs range from $208 for a one-story house to $338 for a two-story house.
Though professional gutter cleaning is more expensive than doing it yourself, it ensures your safety, saves time, and encourages more frequent gutter cleaning, especially if you put the home under a gutter service contract.
How to Save on Gutter Cleaning Costs
Cleaning your own gutters is one way to save on gutter cleaning costs. Other ways to save on the cost of gutter cleaning:
Attach Gutter Guards
Plastic or aluminum snap-on gutter guards cost about $1 per linear foot. Gutter guards will not completely eliminate the need to clean the gutters, but they will reduce the amount of debris in the gutters.
Install Clog-Free Gutters
Clog-free gutters have integrated micro-mesh filters on top or they have a curved top edge that allows water but not debris to flow into the gutter.
Sign a Service Contract
By signing an annual gutter cleaning maintenance contract, the cost of each cleaning may be less than if you purchased an individual cleaning. Service contracts often include related services like roof cleaning and gutter inspection at no extra charge.
Clean More Frequently
Frequent gutter cleaning means less debris that needs to be removed each time. Frequent cleaning will help you avoid expensive problems like repairing sagging gutters or complete gutter replacement.
Clean the Gutters Yourself Some of the Time
Alternate professional gutter cleaning with DIY gutter cleaning to save money. Schedule the professionals for periods when the weather is inclement or when you don't have time. Clean the gutters by yourself when the weather is fair and when it's safer to mount a ladder.
How often do gutters need clearing?
Your gutters should be cleaned two times a year or more often if the gutters and downspouts are not freely flowing. Clean your gutters once in the fall after the leaves have fallen and once again in spring. Depending on your area and the types of trees near your house, you may need to clean the gutters only once per year or more than two times per year.
How long does gutter cleaning last?
Gutter cleaning will last from three months to a year, depending on your area. On average, gutter cleaning will last about six months.
Why hire professional gutter cleaners?
Hire professional gutter cleaners to clean your home's gutters to stay safe, save time, prevent damage to your home, and to clean the gutters thoroughly.
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How Much Does Gutter Cleaning Cost? Architectural Digest
How Much Does Gutter Cleaning Cost? This Old House
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What Are Typical Gutter Cleaning Costs? Forbes Home
The Definitive Guide to Gutter Sizing. Storm Master Gutters
How to Make your Home Safer and Stronger. U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency