3 Simple Ways to Prevent Clogged Downspouts

September 15, 2021

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Two-story House with Gutter and Downspout
If you live in a rainy area or if the rainy season is intense enough to make up for a whole year of dryness, you're probably familiar with the many uses of rain gutters. Rain guttering systems are meant to keep rainwater away from pooling around your house. This protects your home's foundations and keeps moisture away from your walls and soil. Rain gutter cleaning is one of the basic parts of rain gutter maintenance. In short, to ensure that your gutters are working properly, you need to make sure that the entire guttering system is free of obstructions, and this includes your downspouts. If you don't clean your gutters regularly, most of the debris will wind up on your downspouts and, once there, there's no easy way to get it out. Luckily, there are simple ways you can prevent your downspouts from getting clogged in the first place.

Why Are Clogged Downspouts a Problem?

To explain why it's important to keep your downspouts unclogged, we need to look into the purpose they fulfil in a rain guttering system. The downspouts are the final gateway for the water to be properly drained. All the rainwater that rolls from the roofs and into the rain gutters is redirected to the downspouts, and only then, it is drained away from your home.

House with Gutter and DownspoutDownspouts can be clogged when there's debris caught in the water current that flows through the gutters. Sometimes dirt, leaves, and other outside elements are simply drained away along with the rainwater, but clogs are still a risk when you leave the debris to take more room within your rain guttering system. If your gutters aren't cleaned on a regular basis, it's easy to imagine this result, and the effects might not become evident until your downspouts are completely blocked, with no way for the water to flow. It might be hard to find the clog because downspouts have no open portions that could let you look all the way inside, but the downspout elbows and seams are two of the most likely places to get clogged when there's too much dirt running freely from your gutters.

If you get any of the following issues, chances are your downspouts are well on their way to becoming fully clogged:
  • Your gutters are overflowing: This is a common outcome for any type of clog, but it's more likely that the obstruction is affecting your downspouts if the water is overflowing in the area right above the downspout or anywhere near it. If the problem has progressed without maintenance, you might find water overflowing your entire guttering system.

  • Water leaking from your downspout: At some point the water stuck on your downspout has no way to go but back where it came from. In this case, the water would flow upwards until it starts leaking from the gutter outlet. Too much water might also compromise the structure of the downspout themselves to the point of causing fissures in any of their joints.

  • Your downspouts are coming apart: They might start losing their hold around the seams, or they might get detached from the gutter.

How to Prevent Clogged Downspouts

The first step takes place the moment you install your gutters. Basically, the size of your downspouts must match the width of your gutter; some smaller-size gutters are not compatible with large downspout formats, so if you want to get wider downspouts to reduce the risks of clogs, be sure to contact a professional contractor to help you choose a format that matches your gutter's dimensions. If you want to prevent clogs and obstructions without upending your entire guttering system with renovations, here are three simple steps:
  1. Install gutter covers: There's no way to stop leaves and dirt from slipping into your gutters in the middle of a rainstorm unless you have proper protection in place. Gutter guards will cover the parts of your gutters that are most vulnerable, so that no rain or wind can bring outside elements into your gutters and down your downspouts. They are the simplest solution to ward off debris, branches, leaves, and rodents. Moreover, you get to decide how much of your gutters you want to have covered, so you don't need to worry about gutter guards hindering regular maintenance.,/li>

  2. Keep an eye on your area's vegetation: Gutter guards are already a great asset, but if your house is surrounded by trees, you need to keep an eye on the leaves, branches, and pine needles growing around your house, especially if they are situated right over your gutters. All the vegetation in your garden/backyard may find their way into your gutters, so you need to keep all your trees properly trimmed, including your shrubbery, and get rid of all fallen leaves even if they land far from your downspouts.

  3. House with Gutter and Tress
  4. Set a schedule to inspect your gutters: Even if they're working properly, you should make a habit of assessing your gutter's conditions each week, or at least once a month. You need to look under your gutters and in the space between the gutters and the walls. You also need a ladder to reach your roof and evaluate the inside of your gutter system. Finally, you have to check your downspouts, starting from the gutter outlet and all the way to the point of connection where the downspouts meet the ground.
These are all fairly simple tricks that will help you prevent a problem before it occurs, but if you feel that you're past that stage (i.e. your downspouts are already clogged), you can always seek the assistance of a professional rain guttering company to find the best course of action without compromising your gutter's entire structure.

On top of providing all the accessories you need to simplify the maintenance of your gutters, Rain Gutters Solution also puts the expertise of Florida's best installation professionals. If you need assistance to keep your gutters unclogged, you can always contact us, and we'll help you to ensure that your gutters last through anything. Just call (305) 270-7779 or fill out the contact form on this website, to schedule an appointment with our team. We are here for you if you need us!

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