Recent heavy rains have homeowners all over the Twin Cities area cussing because of their poorly-performing gutters.  They may also be wishing they had cleaned them out a few months ago.  Either way, we'd like to encourage you to take a good look at the state of your current rain-handling system and assess whether those gutters and downspouts are doing what they were designed to do - move the rain quickly away from your home.  And this might just be a good time to do something for your own physical well-being: replace those gutters with a system that will keep you on the ground and not up on a ladder clearing out leaves and other debris.

Each year hundreds of homeowners take tumbles off ladders while working on their gutters.  Falls off ladders are common - close to 100,000 E/R visits each year are from ladder accidents.  It may surprise you that even a fall from an 6-foot step ladder could result in a nasty injury.  Now, you'd think that a task such as cleaning out the gutters should be fairly simple and that getting up just a few rungs on a ladder shouldn't be very dangerous. But the truth is, very common mistakes happen that result in these falls:

  • Wearing flat shoes with a smooth sole (anti-slip soles with a bit of a heel are best for ladder work)
  • Ladder misplacement is often the culprit. And since most often gutters are above a garden bed or landscaped area, you're likely to be placing that gutter into soft dirt or grass; big mistake. Placing a ladder in front of a door or a window that could be opened unexpectedly is also a safety issue.
  • Over-reach is common, as people try to avoid having to constantly go up and down the ladder and move it, so they reach too far to the side.  Reaching too far above your head is also an issue; don't be tempted to stand on your toes to avoid going up another rung.
  • Going too far up the ladder - this is as bad as overreaching, since the ladder will become unstable and will tip over easily.

Really, the best way to avoid an injury from falling off a ladder while you're cleaning out your gutters is to stay off the ladder in the first place.  It's preferable to hire a professional gutter cleaning service to do it for you, but what's even better is to have a gutter debris guard installed that will keep the gunk out of your gutters and eliminate that chore once and for all.  Why not talk to us today about our innovative rain-handling system that combines seamless steel gutters, revolutionary oversized downspout openings ('Superspouts') with a debris barrier?  It's just one of the durable exterior remodeling solutions will install that will reduce your home maintenance tasks while protecting your home.

Quarve Contracting, Inc. is a licensed Minnesota full-service exterior home remodeling company.  We serve the greater Minneapolis and St. Paul metro area, including western Wisconsin communities.