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Ladder Safety

The gutter system needs to be regularly cleaned so it’s kept in its top condition. No matter how tough the weather condition is or what kind of debris that your roof receives – as long as the gutters are well maintained – any issues will be manageable. An important tool needed for gutter maintenance can’t be taken for granted: the ladder.

Ladders are needed for easier access to your roof, when climbing up to it is a bit hazardous. The average house roof is about 5 meters high, so the ladders are your best bet. Scaffolding is also encouraged but that’s used more on house renovations or construction. However, for the normal gutter cleaning that one will do – the ladders will help get the job done. Having your own ladder is a good first step, but properly using it is still on of the neglected aspects of this important house tool. Thousands have been treated for ladder related injuries and composes of cuts, bruises, broken bones and even casualties.

There are two types that can be used – an A-frame ladder and an extension ladder. A-frame ladders are the type that forms an A-shaped ladder when erected and provides good support and usually the best type for gutter cleaning. The A-frame ladder is also very useful for tool placement – they come with small platform attachments for you to put your cleaning tools such as a bucket, shovel or a gutter brush. However, these types of ladders can’t go very high and is best for small gutter cleaning tasks and won’t be that effective for houses that are more than a floor high. The extension ladder is completely different. Usually from 7 to 10 feet high, it’s effective for reaching higher places and can be extended for added height. The way it stands is entirely different. In order for this ladder to be used, it must be leaning against a wall or the roof. The bottom part of this ladder have feet that rotate or adjust according to the ground level. It can be the best ladder for gutter cleaning as one can reach the gutters with ease. However, one must carry the tools by himself/herself or needs to put them on the roof.

How can one make sure that their house ladder is properly used and will keep them safe from accidents? Simple. When cleaning the gutter, ensure that the placement of the ladder base will be on stable ground. Stable ground – simply means that it’s not muddy or soft earth as one side of the ladder might sink and you’ll lose your balance in no time. Rocky ground can also be hazardous as well as that is unstable – a single error will mean harm to the user. When using and A-frame ladder, make sure that it’s fully extended at the bottom and it’s on level ground. Ensuring these will ensure a steady placement and the tools placed on the ladder shelf won’t be dropped. If using an extension ladder, bring a bag with you so you don’t have to carry them by hand. Always keep in mind that whenever using a ladder, the 3-point contact rule is followed – the three important parts of your body is in contact with the ladder. There should always be one hand holding on to the ladder.

If you’re doubtful about the ground condition of your house, scaffolding can be used or better yet you can ask for assistance from professional gutter cleaners. Safety first.