Safety First in Dynnyrne Gutter Clean

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Safety First in Dynnyrne Gutter Clean

“Happy to have a reminder thanks, though if we have another dry summer the old Blue Gum across the lane will have the gutters on that side full pretty early in the year and may beat you to it.  Angus turned up when he was supposed to, did a fast, tidy job, and was pleasant and generally efficient in the way he did the job.  I’d be happy to recommend Gutter-Vac, and Angus, and Fleur to anyone who shows an interest. My partner says I am too old to get up on the roof these days so you provide me with a valuable service!”

Tony, Dynnyrne Tas

Our team are very pleased when they get a mention in the feedback. We work very hard to provide a happy and professional Gutter-Vac experience for each client. It can sometimes be a hard process booking the work behind the scenes, what with the winter weather. Communicating with our clients and keeping them informed along the way is a priority of ours.

Safety is important. Employing the right people who are experienced in working at heights and are insured is a must. It is much better to have a professional on the roof instead of risking your safety.

Gutter-Vac Northern and Southern Tasmania have you covered.

Fully insured to work at heights

When working at heights, not only should you be fully trained and have all the right safety equipment, you also need to be insured. 

In the event that something drastic or unexpected happened (which we would hope would be the slimmest of chances to happen) then having insurance is a must. 


It is kind of complicated, but to put it simply.  We are working on your property as a commercial contractor so therefore, if we have a fall, it is not covered by your insurances and if we did not have our own insurance, then you could be held liable for our fall (yes we know this sounds crazy) and payable for medical costs and damages or loss of income! 

That’s why we cover our own insurance.  That way, you have peace of mind that we are doing the right thing with the right safety equipment, but also that if something did happen, we are covered by our insurance, not you!

If you are having any trades or contractors come onto your commercial site or your residential home, make sure you check they are fully insured.  You will be good to go with Gutter-Vac, our franchisees are not able to work without up to day and current insurances.

5 safety reasons to get your gutters professionally cleaned

Clean gutters are safe gutters, but this is true in more ways than you might think.

Here are our top five reasons why having your gutters professionally Gutter-Vac cleaned can improve the safety of your home, and reduce risk to you and your family:

    Without the proper equipment – including roof ladders, cherry pickers and our famous Gutter-Vac – cleaning gutters can be risky and even damage your roof. Ladders that are too short, unsteady or incorrectly used can make you job hard, but can also make your gutter cleaning result in a painful fall and a trip to the emergency room.

    Even with tough gardening gloves, jagged gutter edges or foreign objects, including sharp sticks, metal or glass, can lead to cuts and injuries if cleaning your gutters by hand.
    As above, if you don’t have the right gear, you’ll take unnecessary risks. Leaning a ladder against your guttering is not only unsafe, it can also lead to gutter damage, denting or even causing them to be torn from your property. Depending on your roof, without a proper roof ladder, clambering around up top can cause damage to tiling, panelling or roof sheeting. You might even put a foot wrong, leading to a hole in your roof, or a big drop for you.
    As mentioned above, lack of proper equipment can lead to personal injury, but the positioning of your gutters can also be dangerous. Over-reaching not only puts you off-balance, it can also put a lot of strain on your body. This can simply result in a few aches the next day, but in some circumstances, it might even cause muscle or joint damage.
    We’ve said it before, but we’ll say it again! Full gutters are fire hazards. It’s obvious that dry leaves catch fire very easily, but if you leave them for a long time and they mulch and then dry out, this dense compost can also lead to slow-burn danger. The embers can stay alight inside the mulch, so even though it may be damp on the outside and no flames will be visible, these embers may reignite hours after you think the danger has passed.
    These are all dangers associated with the gutters themselves, but over-spill from full gutters can also be hazardous. If not managed, it can cause a build-up of mould or algae, leading to slippery pavers and other ground surfaces. Even after you’ve fixed your gutters, without thoroughly scrubbing the ground below, this dangerous, slippery surface will remain. It may dry out and seem fine, but the next time it rains you’ll have an ice rink to deal with again. Even without the mould, glazed tiles can be slippery in the wet, and excess water can cause your lawn to turn into a muddy mess, again leading to possible slide-outs.

Some things just aren’t worth the risk! An appointment with Gutter-Vac not only saves you time, it also protects you and your home from injury and damage.

Cleaning gutters from the ground up!

Although it is easier for us to vacuum clean gutters from the roof, it is not always possible.  Sometimes the pitch of the roof is simply to great that it is unsafe to work on the roof.  Other times there could be a slight misty rain or even frost or in some cases ice and snow on a roof, again making it unsafe to be on the roof.  Another reason we can’t work from the roof is due to lack of access.  There is no safe way to access the roof space or that there simply isn’t the space to even put up a ladder to access the roof surface.

In these cases, it doesn’t mean we can’t vacuum clean the gutters, we just do it from the ground.

We have a specialised ‘Ground Worker’s Kit’ that allows us to connect up to the vacuum and through a series of cylinder shaped poles, we can work up to 3 storeys below the gutters.

At the top of our poles we have a ‘candy cane’ shaped piece of piping that is transparent.  This allows us to see what is being vacuumed by the machine and what is coming out of the gutters.

To be honest, most of our franchisees can tell by the simple feel of the suction and the guide of the gutter if they are getting it all. 

Even our before and after photos can be done from the ground if required.  Again, we put a camera on a large pole and can take photos before and after the job is done.

We have a few defence force building and local city councils that regulate that all work needs to be done from a ground level and this is where our ground workers kit gets a real workout.

So if you have a property with limited or no access, a steep roof or the conditions are simply not favourable – or safe – for us to be working on the roof, we can still get the job done and vacuum clean your gutters for you. 

5 Ways Clean Gutters Improve Your Property’s Longevity

A service from Gutter-Vac will obviously clean your gutters, improve drainage and enhance the look of your property. But did you know it can also help you to protect your home and save money? Here are five ways clogged gutters can lead to property damage, even personal injury, and the benefits you gain from clean gutters:

  1. We have spoken before about the fire risk caused by dry leaves collecting in your gutters and roof valleys. These act as the perfect tinder for wildfires, increasing the chance of the fire taking hold in your roof timbers.
  2. The weight of the leaves, especially if left to soak and mulch over time, will add increased stress on your gutter fastenings, potentially leading to their damage or even collapse in the next heavy downpour. Even if they remain in place, the build-up can cause them to warp, affecting their function.
  3. If your roof trusses extend beyond your walls, such as with overhanging eaves, or if you have timber fascia close to your gutters, this damp mulch will also lead to rotting roof timbers and panels. Once this takes hold, no amount of gutter cleaning will prevent it taking hold and seeping deeper into your timbers, which will eventually need completely replacing – a very costly process.
  4. Obviously, if a gutter is full, or even half-full, of organic scrap, there is nowhere for the water to go. Run-off can be really inconvenient, especially around doorways or covered outdoor areas, such as roofed patios, and can also create a slipping hazard.

    More than the hassle of a small waterfall cascading over your front porch, this run-off can damage lawns, turn your backyard into a muddy mangrove and cause water to pool and flood. Again this can become a treacherous hazard and lead to a pesky mosquito infestation! Run-off can also discolour, even erode pavers, tiling or bitumen over time. And, without the rainwater being properly diverted away from your property, it can even begin to damage your walls, leading to damp and mould within the walls and inside your home.
  5. Properly-functioning gutters also have the benefit of taking the water where you want it to go. You can divert it to ornamental ponds, waterways or even top up your swimming pool, if properly treated and filtered. This takes it away from your property, lessening the chance of it causing damage.

    If you’re an avid gardener, you can even collect the water in a barrel to use on your lawn or beds in drier times, saving a significant amount on your monthly water bills.

Keeping your gutters clean is about much more than keeping your house looking good. It is an investment in protecting your home for years to come. So call Gutter-Vac today for a quote and invest in the longevity of your home.

Can Hail Damage Your Roof?

Given the current temperature and weather conditions in Queensland at the moment, there is a high chance we could face more hailstorms.

We all rush around, moving cars under cover and closing windows at the onset of a storm. Yet, thinking of the roof is often forgotten.

Did you catch the footage of hail damaging a tiled roof in the Springfield area recently? In a couple of mere minutes, mango-sized hail smashed through tiles, then gyprock, destroying a lounge room.

Hail can dent metal roofs, (like how your car takes a battering in a storm), and can crack and smash tiled roofs. This can be catastrophic if water leaks occur from the cracks.

Dents in metal roofs caused by hail may not seem like a big problem. However, they can cause structural weak points. Water can pool in the dents and cause corrosion.

Cracks can occur in tiled roofs, which can be tricky to detect. The problem may go unnoticed for some time, perhaps not until the water starts dripping into your ceiling cavity! It is best to get a professional roofer on the job after a significant hailstorm.

Generally speaking, larger hailstones cause the most damage, but don’t underestimate the small stuff! Even small, pebble sized hail stones can damage your roof. Likewise, small leaves and twigs blown about by a storm can easily block downpipes. We often hear of cases where blocked gutters and downpipes have then caused an overflow in the ceiling, and led to internal water damage! This is obviously not a good situation, as repairs can add up, with costly re-plastering and re-painting.  Best to abide by the old saying, ‘a stitch in time, saves nine’.

Following a storm, it is good idea to walk around the property. Inspect for any damages that may have occurred and get onto them straight away, to prevent any associated leakage problems.

The age and condition of the roof also affects the likelihood of it being damaged by hail. A roof that has been neglected in terms of maintenance, will undoubtedly be weaker in a hailstorm.  This can be easily countered by regular cleans and inspections.

The intensity and direction of the wind during the storm will also impact the scale of hail damage. High winds will heighten the angle of impact, causing more damage to the roof and gutters.

Different roofing materials can influence the extent of the damage too. Steel gutters are the most sturdy during a hailstorm, but still not impervious. If your gutters are made from aluminum or copper, they can be dented by hail. If you have a gutter guard or screen, it is best to have it inspected for tears/holes following a storm. Likewise, if your home has skylights – assess the dome, diffuser, shaft, and flashing for any cracks, damage, or leaking.

On tiled roofs – a telltale sign that water is going where it shouldn’t be, is the presence of algae and moss. This may indicate cracks in the tiles. If you suspect your gutters or roof has been damaged by hail, it is best to get it assessed by a professional.

It is also a good idea to download the free SES Assistance app, if you haven’t already, to gain piece of mind ahead of more unpredictable weather forecast for this coming summer.

Most importantly, stay safe and enjoy the holiday season! We look forward to working with you to achieve your property maintenance goals in the New Year.

Safety is a priority at Gutter-Vac

When Gutter-Vac began (more than 20 years ago now), I wanted to ensure one simple thing….

A franchisee could go out for the day, make a good solid living to provide for their family by vacuum cleaning gutters for customers, but I also wanted to ensure that at the end of the day, they would be able to go home to their family…. In one piece!

Working on a roof and working on ladders is not the safest place to work, but if you have the knowledge on how to do this safely, plus the safety equipment to back you up, then there is no reason that you can’t go out and work at heights for the entire day and then make it home to your family each night.

This is why I began Gutter-Vac’s sister company, Ballantyne Safety.  Not only is it an Registered Training Office (RTO) that teaches people how to work at heights, but we also have safety products and systems to ensure the safety of not just the Gutter-Vac franchisees, but also people from other companies that are working on roofs and climbing up and down ladders all day.

Many people don’t realise that we have actually trained many people from other companies as well as the Gutter-Vac franchisees.  Why do people like our training?  Because, believe it or not, you can do a working at heights course to be trained to work at heights WITHOUT having any practical training, just theoretical.  I always do a practical session to put into practice what they have learnt in the classroom because being on a roof and implementing what you have learnt is a very different feeling than just talking about it.

Ballantyne Safety also manufactures specialised roof anchor points that can be attached to a roof for just the time an individual needs to work on that roof, then they can be removed and used for the next job.

The secret (well, it’s not really a secret) is that we use a travel restraint system of working at heights rather than a fall arrest system.  What does this mean?  Basically the difference is that with a travel restraint system, if you fall whilst on a roof, you fall over on the roof, but not off the roof.  A fall arrest system means that if you fall over, you actually fall off the roof, but you are held in a harness, basically dangling off of the roof.

By using a travel restraint system, this means franchisees can work on their own because with a fall arrest system, you must have two people onsite at all times.  It also means that franchisees are kept safer because a fall off of the roof, even with a harness, can still cause injury.  Not as much as a fall on the ground, but still not a pleasant experience that’s for sure.

So we take safety very seriously at Gutter-Vac.  Every franchisee and ALL of their staff are trained to work at heights and have all the correct and current equipment to do so.  Add to that we are fully insured to work at heights so all of this should give you peace of mind that when you hire Gutter-Vac to vacuum clean your gutters, we do so safely – for us and for you.

Ladder Safety Tips

I just thought I’d pass on some information and knowledge about ladder use. So if you’re thinking about a bit of DIY work, no problem at all, but do it safely.  If you need to do work with a ladder, there’s a few things you should do.

If you’ve got a stepladder,  make sure the stepladder side clips are engaged properly and make sure you put it on good even footing.  You need the whole four feet on the same plane, the same level. You shouldn’t really have a step ladder elevated to two different levels.

Ensure you don’t go past where it says, “Don’t go past this point”. All ladders have got this written on them. So don’t go past this point and that means you feet. You should never go up to the top few rungs on a step ladder. They’re just not designed for it. There’s a real chance you will fall.

Using extension ladders.  If using this ladder you’re probably going up to two story on buildings, which is not a great idea.  The thing about that is that you have got to have the footing of the ladder secured and you’ve got to make sure it’s on firm level ground and the top of the ladder should be secured also.   It should be fixed to the guttering or fixed to the roof.  So there’s lots of ways of doing that with straps and hooks and then there’s lots of equipment that you can buy to do that. It’s very important that you have your ladder in a secure position, so it can’t go sideways and it can’t come back.  Most accidents on ladders are not when you’re on the ladder or when you’re on the roof, most accidents happen going from the ladder to the roof or from the roof to the ladder.

They say are “People fell off a roof”,  but in a lot of cases, they didn’t . It was where they are going from one to the other, but you know what, quite frankly, why would you do any of this stuff yourself? Why would you get on a roof? A two story roof when you don’t do it for a living or you don’t have the safety equipment that you should use – you’re much better off getting a professional involved. So unless it’s an emergency, I would always recommend that you contact somebody in the industry or does it for a living and get them to come out and do whatever you want done on the roof or off a ladder.

Stay safe.

Gutter Cleaning for Body Corporates / Strata Managers.

When a property has a common roof line or common ground or shared areas, then they are generally under a body corporate arrangement. That is that each owner of the properties (think units and townhouses or villas) will pay a nominated amount each week or month to cover the maintenance and insurances for those areas. 

This obviously includes the gutters and then of course the gutter cleaning. 

Generally the gutter cleaning is budgeted for each and every year to be carried out by a trained professional who of course can not only complete the job, but also do so in a safe manner with full insurance.   That’s why we get the call !

Many home owners – particularly of townhouses – give us a call when they need their gutters cleaned, maybe as they have an overflowing gutter.  This is not something in many cases that you need to foot the bill for.  You do need to get the work approved by the body corporate manager (or strata manager) before getting it done, but often cases, you have already paid for it in your body corporate fees.

We do a lot of work from body corporate managers because to put it simply, gutter cleaning is not really their top priority.  They have a lot of moving parts, a lot of things to organise and take care of on behalf of the owners within that body corporate.  Add to that, they will be managing many – if not hundreds – of body corporate properties.  So gutter cleaning is on their to do list as a top priority.

But that’s why they love to use Gutter-Vac.

They love that we have all of our paper work and insurances sorted.  Takes away many a headache trying to get a contractor to provide all the paperwork (licences, insurances, contact details) that they are REQUIRED to have on file.

They love that we are fully insured and use all of our specialised safety gear.  Peace of mind for them!

They love that we can give them a written quote – before their deadlines!  They need to get quotes prior to the meetings with the owners body corporate committee and if a tradesperson doesn’t get the quote to them prior to the meeting, they are left feeling red faced and will have to wait months, perhaps even a year, for another chance to get the quote approved at the next meeting.

They love that when we say we will be there we are there and if for some reason, such as weather we can’t do the work on the set day, we will communicate with them.  They are never left wondering.

They love that we do before and after photos plus a roof report as this all is great value for them to give to the owners committee to show what is being done plus alerting them of any potential roof issues.  Prevention is always better than cure.

They love that we will remind them when a property is due for its next gutter clean.  As we said, they have so much on their to do list each day … often urgent matters that need to be taken care of asap.  Remember who needs what and when – especially the gutter cleaning – is something that is missed.  We give them a reminder and then they look great to the owners because they are keeping up with the regular maintenance.

Many of our franchisees have been working with body corporate companies and specific managers for years.  They have built ups such a relationship and trust that the managers simply email when they need a quote or work to be done… they don’t even have to pick up the phone.

So if you are living in or own a property that is part of a body corporate, no need to worry or pay to have your gutters cleaned, but you might want to check that the body corporate managers are using Gutter-Vac so that you truly can take this item off your mind, knowing that we have got you covers.  

Pass on our details – 1300 654 253 (local call through to your local Gutter-Vac franchisee) or visit

Ladder safety when cleaning gutters.

Did you know that more injuries occur from people falling off ladders than they do off a roof?

A fall from a ladder can be just as severe as a fall from the roof, sometimes worse!

Remember years ago when Molly Meldrum was putting up Christmas lights and fell from the ladder?  He wasn’t even very high up when he fell and this left him in a critical state with a fractured skull, fractured ribs and a punctured lung that sent him straight to ICU.

So many people figure they will just DIY clean their gutters.  Even though cleaning your gutters by hand with a bucket isn’t really all that efficient or effective, people think they are saving themselves a few hundred bucks, but what they are really doing is putting themselves and their family into real danger.  What would happen to your family financially if you fell from the ladder and ended up in ICU for weeks if not months?  

Ladders are so easy to lose your balance from.  Many people using ladders don’t even follow simple ladder safety techniques such as working from a stable base and ensuring your ladder is secured to the property.  They then reach too far, climb up or down too fast, don’t wear the correct footwear, try to carry too many items or balance them or they are simply distracted.

A lot of commercial operations from schools to commercial warehouses, have a 1 rung rule.  That is, if you have to go up more than 1 rung on a ladder, then safety gear is required following a set of safety guidelines.

This is why so many commercial companies and organisations get us in to clean their gutters.  They won’t risk the safety of their own staff because they know that need someone trained and insured to do the job and their jobs can be in the vicinity of thousands of dollars. 

Is your health, you families financial stability, really worth you saving a few hundred dollars and risking it by doing it yourself?

Why not give us a call on 1300 654 253 for a free quote… maybe it won’t only mean your get your gutters cleaned, but it is also a pretty good insurance right?