5 Improvements for Your Rainwater Downpipes

A properly working roof gutter system is a must if you want to route rainwater harmlessly away from your home. A lack of gutters and downspouts can cause damage to a home's foundation or destroy nearby landscaping, not to mention dump water on your end when you exit or enter the home. If you are installing new downpipes, why not add an upgrade or two while you are at it?

1. Drainage Installation

A common problem with downpipes is that they empty out too close to the foundation, which negates any benefits of the guttering system. You can have the downpipe fed into an underground drain that routes water safely away from the home and into a storm drain system. Another option is to install gravel drainage beds well away from the foundation and then route the downpipes to these.

2. Pipe Screening

One frustrating chore with the average downpipe is trying to safely clear out blockages caused by dead leaves and other debris. Downpipe screening can eliminate much of this task. Special screens are installed over the top of the downpipe. Debris can still collect on top of the screen, but it is much easier to simply scoop it off rather than try to dislodge it from inside the pipe.  

3. Folding Ground Pipes

Downpipe extenders are useful for routing runoff water further from the home or directly into a nearby garden bed, but they can get in the way when you are trying to mow or walk across the yard. Folding pipe extenders can be folded up when they aren't in use. There are designs available that will automatically fold down once water enters the drainpipe, so you don't have to remember to fold them back down before a rainstorm.

4. Catchment Options

Harvesting rainwater for use in the yard and garden is an environmentally sound practice that will lower water usage. Look into an integrated rain barrel or cistern system that your downpipes hook into directly. This way you can rest assured that no runoff water will be lost from the gutter system.

5. Corrosion Prevention

Rust and corrosion can affect downpipes, limiting their useful life. Opt for those that have been treated with a hard scratch-proof enamel coating. As long as the metal of the downpipe is protected from scratches and damage, rust should not be an issue.

Contact a rainwater downpipe installer to learn more about upgrading or replacing your downpipes.