When is the best time to clean gutters? Our experts have the answers

Finding the best time to clean your gutters is all about regular maintenance and the local conditions in your area

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Cleaning your gutters regularly is a crucial aspect of home maintenance. Letting debris pile up can lead to blocked gutters, water damage, and even foundation problems over time, however, knowing the best times to clean your gutters can ensure they remain clear and safe.

Ensuring your gutters remain clean is crucial for preserving the integrity of a home, and timing is key to ensuring this task is completed effectively and safely. 

Whether you are preparing your home for fall by clearing debris or reinforcing your gutters before and after storms, it's important to follow these tips for the best times to clean your gutters.

The best time to clean gutters

Ana Coddington, lead interior designer for Archival Designs advises, 'As a rule of thumb, it's best to clean your gutters at least twice a year – once in late spring and once in early fall. However, depending on where you live and the local conditions, you might need to do this more frequently.

'Take into consideration the weather when planning your gutter cleaning. If you live in an area with heavy rainfall or frequent storms, it's best to clean your gutters before the rainy season begins. This will prevent clogs and ensure proper drainage during heavy rains. Or, if you have trees around your home and it was a particularly windy day, it's a good idea to check your gutters for any debris that may have accumulated.'

1. Seasonally

A gutter on roof full of leaves

(Image credit: Getty Images)

'The best time to start your annual gutter cleaning is during the late spring or early summer,' recommends Angela Rubin, a cleaning expert from Hellamaid. 'This period follows the tree shedding season, reducing the likelihood of clogs caused by falling leaves and debris.'

'This also follows the pollen-heavy season, which can leave a sticky residue on your gutters and compromise their functionality,' adds Fred McGill, interior expert and founder of Next Modern Home.

'Cleaning them in late spring ensures that your home's interior remains free from allergens and potential leaks during summer rainstorms.' 

Early fall is another crucial period for gutter maintenance. 

'As leaves begin to fall and winds pick up, your gutters are more likely to accumulate debris,' explains Fred McGill. 'If left unattended, clogged gutters can lead to water overflowing and seeping into your home, potentially causing interior damage.

'Cleaning your gutters in early autumn ensures that they are ready to handle the increased rain and potential snowmelt of the winter months, thus winterizing your house and protecting your home's interior from moisture-related issues.'

Angela Rubin
Angela Rubin

Hellamaid is an award-winning cleaning company in Canada that's been featured on multiple global media brands.

2. Quarterly inspections

Enclosed roof terrace with rendered walls in 1920s San Francisco house

(Image credit: Matthew Millman)

'Even with scheduled seasonal cleanings, it's wise to inspect your gutters quarterly,' recommends Angela Rubin. 'This helps you catch any unexpected debris or blockages early, preventing potential damage during heavy rains.'

'Some key indicators that your gutters need cleaning include overflowing water, visible debris, and sagging gutters,' says Ana Coddington. 'However, don't let these signs wait until it's too late – be proactive and schedule regular gutter cleanings to prevent potential damage.'

3. Before and after storms

A gutter on roof full of leaves

(Image credit: Getty Images)

'If you live in an area prone to heavy storms, consider cleaning your gutters before and after significant weather events,' advises Muffetta Kruger, cleaning expert and founder of Muffetta’s Domestic Assistants. 'This will help ensure your gutters can handle the excess water and debris that comes with such storms.'

After severe weather events, such as heavy storms or hurricanes, promptly check your gutters. High winds and debris can quickly clog them. Cleaning promptly after such events can prevent damage to your home.

4. Annual roof Inspection

exterior of white clapboard Victorian home

(Image credit: Shade Degges)

'For a comprehensive home maintenance approach, consider cleaning your gutters during your annual roof inspection,' recommends Angela Rubin. 'This ensures that both your roof and gutters are in good condition.'


How to reduce the amount of debris in your gutters?

To reduce the amount of debris in your gutters, consider installing gutter guards to reduce the frequency of cleanings. These can help keep larger debris out of your gutters.

We love this A-M gutter guard, from Amazon.

How to clear your gutters after a storm?

Jordan Woolf, owner of Huntsville Roofing Solutions advises, 'Use a ladder to safely reach your gutters. Wear gloves and safety glasses to protect yourself from debris. Use a trowel or scoop to remove any leaves and debris from your gutters.

'Flush your gutters with water to ensure that they are draining properly.

'Inspect your gutters for any signs of damage or leaks. If you find any damage, repair it immediately to prevent water damage to your roof and foundation.'

Ensure you have the necessary tools, including a trowel, bucket, safety goggles, gloves, and a hose, to efficiently remove debris and flush out the gutters.

We recommend using these safety glasses and cut-resistant work gloves kit, from Amazon.

'Ultimately, the best time to clean gutters is before they become a problem,' advises Fred McGill. 'Regular maintenance and check-ups can save you time, money, and potential headaches down the road. So, stay on top of gutter maintenance, be aware of your home's specific needs, and always prioritize preventing any potential damage.'

Regular gutter maintenance is essential to ensure proper functioning and prevent potential water damage to your home. 

If you're unsure about the best time to clean your gutters for your specific conditions or need assistance, consult with professionals or local experts who can provide tailored advice based on your specific location and circumstances

Lola Houlton
News writer

Lola Houlton is a news writer for Homes & Gardens. She has been writing content for Future PLC for the past six years, in particular Homes & Gardens, Real Homes and GardeningEtc. She writes on a broad range of subjects, including practical household advice, recipe articles, and product reviews, working closely with experts in their fields to cover everything from heating to home organization through to house plants. Lola is a graduate, who completed her degree in Psychology at the University of Sussex. She has also spent some time working at the BBC.