4 Downspout Myths

Downspouts are necessary if you wish to keep water from pooling on your roof or drenching you as you leave your home during a rainstorm. Directing the water from the top of your home to a specific area helps you to control the erosion that can be caused if you did not have one at all.

There are, however, some myths involved in downspouts that you should be made aware of. People who profess to be experts have come up with many different theories involving downspouts. A better informed home owner is better equipped to deal with these myths.

All-in-One Gutters

Myth: All-in-one gutter systems profess to remove the occurrence of leaves, small branches, and critters from clogging up your drainage system. The downspout that is recommended for use with the all-in-one system is larger than the standard downspout.

Truth: All-in-one gutter and downspout systems do not remove the occurrence of leaves, they still get in. Small animals and birds can still nest in them and since there is no screen over the exit hole the downspout gets clogged with leaves even though it is a larger tube.

Gutter Screens

Myth: Gutter screens eliminate the necessity of cleaning out the gutter system. 

Truth: Gutter screens do help to eliminate the necessity of cleaning but some debris is small enough to pass through the screen. In addition with time the screens can corrode under the leaves that sit on top of them decomposing and holding moisture in. This causes the debris to fall into the gutter and then down the downspout causing clogs that are difficult to clear.

Slotted Gutter Cover

Myth: Gutter system will keep debris out and laterally move the water to the gutter and down the downspout.

Truth: The cover does not keep out the debris. Instead it moves the leaves and seeds along the corridor of the cover and creates an optimum medium for growth of plants in the downspout severely clogging it.

General Myths

Myth: If you cover your gutters with any mesh, any hard cover or special manufactured gutter systems you will not have to ever clean out your downspout as it will not get debris washed into it to clog it up.

Truth: Regardless of the choice of gutter systems it is still necessary to clean out your gutters and downspouts at least twice a year. If you live under trees or in a windy area you should set up a scheduled time even more often to clear them out. Chemicals and other quick fix products will not do as good a job as a garden hose with a heavy duty high pressure nozzle.

No matter your choice in gutter and downspout you need to be sure that your own proper maintenance is performed on a schedule that is recommended by an environmental or homeowner organization and not by the manufacturer's recommendations. They are trying to sell a product with promises and concepts that are many times too good to be true. Common sense should always prevail over advertising words.