How to Cut a Downspout into a Gutter

Lead Image
  • 4-40 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 35-200
What You'll Need
Sheet metal screws
Aluminum sealant
Sheet metal shears
Pencil or marker

Reduce, reuse, recycle has been a mantra of those looking to be environmentally aware since the 1970s. You can put the mantra into use by learning how to cut a downspout into a gutter. Whether you normally make use of eco-friendly practices or not, you probably enjoy saving money and time. There is no need to call a professional and pay for labor and materials costs when you can complete a simple project yourself. If you have an extra existing downspout, you should be able to transform it into a gutter. The following instructions describe how to do so.

Step 1 - Find the Right Location

The first thing you should do is decide where the best place to reconfigure one of your downspouts into a gutter. It’s important to think about where the most water drains out from the bottom of the existing downspout.

On the bottom of the gutter itself, take a pencil or marker and trace the outline of a sleeve. This is the thing that connects the gutter and downspout together, so it is important that it is placed correctly and securely.

Step 2 - Drill Four Holes

In each corner of the outline you made of the sleeve, drill one hole. Again, be sure that you have traced the sleeve in the appropriate position before doing this because you don’t want to end up with a bunch of random drill holes.

With your sheet metal shears, cut out the sleeve tracing slowly and carefully. Don’t rush or you could jab yourself with the shears.

Step 3 - File the Edges and Apply Sealant

With a suitable metal file, take some time to smooth down the edges of the metal sleeve. It’s a good idea to place the sleeve in some newspaper so the metal chips can be easily discarded. Doing this will ensure you do not scratch or cut yourself while handling it in the future.

Apply the sealant around the edges of the sleeve. Be sure to use the right amount of sealant so that moisture does not seep in and cause damage.

Step 4 - Secure the Sleeve to the Gutter

Place the sleeve in the space that is left from cutting it out. Hold it securely in place. Then, take your screwdriver and screw the sheet metal screws into each of the four holes that you drilled out earlier, tightening each one. You are done.

Anyone can learn how to do this, and now you will be able to repeat the process with ease if you need to in the future. Be prepared to help others complete the process because most people are intimidated, but, really know they need to make the changes.