Homework    Rain Barrel Project - Downspout Diversion

Motivation/Background: When I bought my house the downspout from the roof ended right at the foundation. This caused problems in two ways: first, the water would flow down the exterior stairs and run into a drain hooked into the city sewer (about 5 feet below grade). All would be well until the drain clogged up with leaves - which often happened - and the water would back up and flood the basement. This only happened to me once but it apparently happened many times to the former owners. Second problem is that all that water was seeping down close to the foundation and through the basement wall. Not enough water to even make a puddle on the basement floor but enough to cause paint on the wall to peel and over the long run, it would ruin the mortar joints in the cinder block foundation. The third reason I wanted to divert the downspout was for this project as the location I had in mind for the rainbarrels was about 15 feet away from the house.


The original downspout for the house was still in place - surprising given how old the house is and what else has been done. This downspout is galvanized steel. As I have mentioned elsewhere, you can't mix metals (like steel and aluminum gutters) so if I was going to change anything on the downspout I needed to either replace the entire gutter/downspout with copper/aluminum or I needed to change the downspout with galvanized. Copper was too expensive for me at the time and I didn't want to replace the gutter anyway since it is/was working just fine.

The galvanized downspouts needed to be primed and painted. I bought the best stuff I could but it was all latex and water based - not oil based. Over time I've seen the adhesion to the steel has left a LOT to be desired. Don't know what to do about this in the future if I need to paint galvanized metal outside.

After priming and painting I cut and installed - pretty simple, really. I used stainless steel rivets which was probably overkill but like so many things with a small house, I needed so few that I felt the minimal extra expense was well worth it.

Note to self: add a picture or two of the downspout diversion....

Other Stuff
Contact Us

Rain Barrel Project
1 Index
2 Downspout Diversion
3 First Flush Device
4 Stand
5 Plumbing
6 References