we have had a very unusual winter and have had a large amount of people requesting gutter cleaning that didn’t have them in the fall. we had a lot of snow so there are ice dams and frozen gutters causing problems all over the city. i have done it for one large commercial account that was desperate but its not something i usually offer this far into the winter. i Usually take a hose and flood the gutter to thaw it and it separates from the gutter, then i carefully take a chisel hammer and break pieces out and remove them. Its a slow process so if someone knows a better way please let me know!
Are you going to be frozen out all winter or are you like us and we go back and forth?
Its back and for here. we were at about 12 degrees during the day for a while with 3 inches of snow a day and now its 35 degrees and raining. Thursday its going to be 20 degrees again and snowing so its hard to tell what its going to be like. My plan was to take jan and feb off completely and just relax this winter. But with all the calls wanting snow removal I’m wondering if its business i should be taking advantage of. I will receive my Cut N Slide snow removal thursday and will do some snow removal for some people. But i have a job with 650 feet of frozen gutters they want cleared. They are willing to pay but i also don’t feel like chipping away at that much frozen gutter.
I believe also @Jesse_Green deals with it a bit!
Got to use steamer. Thats a huge business here in the state of minnesota. Something i am considering investing in.
how much are they and which one are you looking at getting?
from $2500 to $10,000
If it’s not normal just reschedule
Gutters is a service that no one needs to be home for so when they freeze here I just say we’ll swing by once the freeze is over. Never a problem people understand
We had our gutter cleaning season cut about 3 weeks short due to a cold December. We tried about everything over the years from rubber mallets, metal hand shovels, and an electric heat gun. While a lot of time you can throw enough tools at a job to get it done, it kills your efficiency when things are frozen. We found we were just not able to make an acceptable hourly rate working on frozen gutters.
The idea of a steamer is great, but by the time you factor in the additional setup, operation, and pack up time on top of your gutter cleaning time, it does not seem worth it just for gutter cleaning. It would be a different story if you are also removing ice dams.
I would love to hear if anyone else has been able clean frozen gutters efficiently.
We fill up a bunch of gallon jugs with hot water in the shop in the morning. Then pour some (not a ton) in each section and often you can give the gutter a very slight bend to get the ice chunk to “pop” off and detach, or at least let some of the water seep around the edge. be very careful though not to bend it so much it doesn’t immediately return to form. I like to use a handheld angled scraper, after you get a section started you can move along pretty quick by shoving under the ice and popping it upward. In late 2011 we did over 100 gutter jobs that were frozen, and its been fewer than 5 a year since then.
We handle most jobs with a white rubber mallet and a putty knife. The water trick works great but I hate dealing with water when its freezing out.