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From A Great Plumbing Tulsa Team: What can happen if a downspout is improperly installed?

Rain gutters and downspouts make an essential part of every house. With precise installation, these can protect the roof and walls from rainwater and protects the foundation of your home as well. However, with such importance, it is essential to properly install the downspout because otherwise, it will bring more damage than benefits. Installing a downspout may seem easy, and you may think of taking it as a DIY project; however, it is essential to make no mistakes whatsoever for the best results.

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What are the signs of an improperly installed downspout?

With many people taking downspout installation as a DIY project, they end up with improper installation. However, most don’t know if they have properly installed the downspout or not until sometimes bad happens. So, if you are also looking to check if you have an improperly installed downspout or not, here are the signs that may help you:

·         Bad placement of the downspout

You cannot install a downspout anywhere you want. Installing a downspout takes proper calculation because its goal is to collect rainwater from the roof of your house and then bring it down. The next part of its job is to direct the water away from the home and towards a gutter so it does not damage your home’s foundation. A common sign of improper installation is that the downspout does not take water away from your house.

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·         Outdoor and indoor leaks

Wherever a downspout is installed, all interior and exterior leaks must not exist. So, whenever you find the smallest leakage, it signifies an improper rain gutter and downspout installation. There are several types of leakages, including:

  • A steady stream of water
  • Water seeping into the surface of the walls
  • Water dripping even after the downspout must have been empty

Finding any of these or more than one together is a good indication of improper installation.

·         Incorrect pitch

The most important is the pitch or the angle at which the rain gutter and downspout are installed. Without the right pitch, the gutter will contain water instead of sliding it down and away from the roof. So, whenever you find water to begin collecting in the downspout, it indicates that the installation has not been done correctly. It is because the downspout may not store any water at all.

·         Clogged gutters

Sometimes the water collection in a downspout or rain gutter is not because of the incorrect pitch. The reason behind it can be a clogged gutter from leaves and debris. These downspouts are not designed in a way that they easily get clogged. So, when the installer fails to install these correctly, clogging may happen to bring, and some signs of a clogged downspout include:

  • Basement flooding
  • Overflowing downspout
  • Strange water sounds

·         Sagging gutters

Do you find the downspout installed at your place to be sagging down? It is because of all the weight it faces from holding that clogging. Be careful with sagging gutters because they are heavy and may fall at any instant, depending on the conditions.

What are the consequences of an improperly installed downspout?

When installed improperly, a downspout designed to bring long-term benefits and protection for your property’s structure can do the exact opposite. If you find any of the above-discussed signs of an incorrectly installed downspout at your home, you may also have to face the following consequences. So, taking safer steps and protecting your property from any damage is better.

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·         Roof damage

Roofs are one of the biggest investments in a house, and due to a bad downspout, you can face severe roof damage. A downspout must keep your roof dry, and when it does not work as intended, it can make the water leak and seep into the roof resulting in thousands of damage.

·         Structural damage

A downspout that does not work correctly does not direct the water away from your house. So, any splashing or accumulation of water near the structure and foundation of your house can lead to structural damage. The worst part is that the damage increases if you ignore the issue. Hence, it is important to resolve the issue as soon as possible.

·         Interior and exterior paint damage

It does not matter if your walls are made from wood or bricks. Any material that absorbs water will actively absorb the water from a leaking downspout, and it may result in paint damage. You can get cracks or chips in your paint, or the paint may peel off. The worst part is that repainting that surface won’t help for a long time.

·         Downspout replacement costs

The last consequence of improper downspout installation is that you may need professionals to re-install it. In the worst case, professionals may recommend getting a new downspout and rain gutter setup resulting in even higher repair costs. Thus, slight negligence in installing a downspout can cost you hundreds to thousands of dollars, depending on how early you detect the issue.

Things you need to avoid to prevent improper downspout installation

Now that you know the signs and consequences of improper downspout installation, there are a few things to avoid that you must know as well. Knowing what to do and what not to do will help make this investment efficient. Here is a list of everything professionals say you must avoid to prevent an improper downspout installation:

  • Going for DIY installation or choosing incompetent service providers for the job
  • Going for a cheaper rain gutter setup
  • Choosing an inadequate size or structure of rain gutter

With that, you can be worry-free about never getting cracks, chips, or peels in your paint. The perfectly installed downspouts will also prevent roof damage, exterior or interior structural damage, and, most importantly, save on downspout repair and replacement costs.


A proper downspout installation involves using the right hardware, tools, and, most importantly, workforce. Losing quality in any of these can result in an improper installation that costs you more upfront and several long-term issues you may have to face. To get the best value from this investment and have a long downspout, you must ensure that you don’t get any improper installation signs.

Fun Fact

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