Autumn. It's a beautiful time of the year to watch the leaves fall… into your gutters. And if you didn't get them cleaned out in the fall, you have an even worse mess to deal with in the spring or early summer.
Leaf blowers are great at clearing dry, crisp leaves on the ground, but they don’t work so well on gutters.
Why? It takes a couple weeks for all of the leaves to fall. And, if you're like me, it takes a few more weeks to actually get off the couch and clean your gutters. While you're watching football, it will rain. In fact, it will probably rain a few times. It takes a little drizzle to compact the leaves into a paper mache-like mess.
Once leaves get wet, they take forever to dry. Your leaf blower can huff and puff like the Big Bad Wolf, but they won't budge. You can try flushing them out with your garden hose, but it'll just make the big blob of mush even wetter. You need some serious pressure from a power washer to force the leaves out.
Any pressure washer will suffice as long as you’re careful. Pressure washers will kick back like a shotgun. Using one on a roof or ladder is flirting with an ambulance ride to the emergency room. Your feet should be planted firmly on the ground. The secret to safely power washing your gutters is getting two important accessories:
A must-have tool if your house is two stories or taller. You simply connect your high-pressure hose to the telescoping wand. You can extend the fiberglass or aluminum material by 12-,18- or 24-feet. The 12-foot fiberglass wand is ideal for residential use.
Simply connect this u-shaped wand to the end of your telescoping wand. Stick it inside your gutters at an angle and go wild. The high-pressure spray will blast away the leaves in seconds. Plus, the wastewater will help clear the downspouts.
Here’s the only downside: you’re going to get dirty and wet. Rain falls down. So does pressure washer spray. Before you start, make sure that you’re wearing protective eyewear and a hat.
When you're all finished cleaning the leaves out of the gutters with your pressure washer setup, they'll be littering the walkways and patios where they've landed. You didn't want them in your gutters, but you definitely don't want them all over your walkways.
The best way to clean up the mess that has landed where you can see it is with a water broom. These handy accessories will sweep away the mess while giving your walkways, decking, and patios a fresh clean look of their own. There are different kinds to choose from, and it's important that you choose the kind that works best with your washer.
However, if your pressure washer produces less than 2.3 GPM and 2700 PSI, you'll want to opt for the BiKleener water broom with two nozzles, as the lower PSI will clean better when spread through only two nozzles instead of three.
The cleaning width is only 10" - 12", rather than 14", but will be more effective for pressure washers with lower GPM and PSI. You'll still need 1.2 GPM and at least 1500 PSI, but most pressure washers produce at least that much.