Most people overlook - or perhaps pretend not to see - their gutters because, well, cleaning them is a messy job. And until you see plants sprouting from them you probably don't think much about what's in there.
Gutters should be cleaned and maintained every fall. Clear out all leaves, pine needles, dirt and any other debris that's started to collect — and if you live in a wooded area, consider installing gutter guard screens to keep leaves out.
Why it's a good idea: Clean gutters and downspouts can help prevent ice dams on your roof, roof leaks and water and ice buildup on the ground below, which can cause basement flooding, among other things.
Not ready to climb up on your roof? Hire a professional rather than risk injury.