How to Know if a Gutter Downspout Extension is Right for Your Home

gutter downspout extension

Being a homeowner comes with many different things you need to do. One of the main things homeowners often forget about is the gutters and gutter downspout extensions. If you aren’t sure what gutter downspout extensions are, you are not alone.

This guide will help explain exactly what extensions are and when you might need them. When researching how to replace gutters, readers often always come across the need for downspout extensions.

Here is some more information so you can see when and why they are needed.

What Exactly Are Downspout Extensions?

The whole point of gutters is that they are meant to collect rainwater and ensure the water goes into the ground away from the house. Downspouts are part of the gutter that directs the water where it is supposed to go.

When installing gutters, you might need to put a downspout extension if you feel like the water is not going far enough away from the house or if the water is going towards the house instead of away from the house.

A downspout extension can be added to the DIY gutters that you’re already putting into the home. It will ensure the water is going where it needs to go. This also decreases the risk of your basement or home flooding.

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When Do I Need Downspout Extensions?

You might not be sure if you need downspout extensions. Not everyone will need extensions. Some homeowners never need them while others might realize they need them after the first rainfall.

The only time you need downspout extensions is if the gutters are not directing water correctly away from the home. If you are worried the gutters are not long enough, you should expect them after heavy rainfall.

See where the water is flowing out of the gutter and ensure it’s not going toward the house. Too much water in your landscaping and flower beds can also be a problem. If you see a large amount of water going into your garden, you might also need to get extensions so that it flows in another direction. Downspout extensions are the best way to save your landscaping and garden from being ruined due to too much rainfall and soil erosion.

How Long Should I Make My Downspouts?

Gutter downspout sizes depend on your home. Not everyone will need the same length. Most experts will tell you if you’re doing a DIY gutter installation that you should extend them at least six feet away from the home.

Some people can get away with four feet, but six feet is a safe number for those who want to do it themselves. Even if you are set on doing the gutters as DIY, you could call a professional to have them just come look at the home and current gutters to see how much you should extend them.

Keep in mind though that you cannot just extend the downspout in any direction. You need to first see which direction is best. You don’t want the downspout to go directly into concrete for example as it can block the flow and you still end up getting water flowing in the wrong direction.

Determining Downspout Extension Length

If you are not sure how far to extend the downspouts, here are some guidelines you can follow for determining the length your home needs.

Your Home’s Slope

The first thing you need to determine is the slope of your home. If you live on a steep hill, you need to ensure the extensions of the home go past the hills. This ensures the water goes down the length of the hill and as far away from the home as possible.

The Building Codes

Some areas have codes that determine how long a gutter downspout can be. You need to ensure you follow these guidelines or you risk getting fined by the city or the homeowner’s association.

Make sure you double-check all building codes before starting the extension process. If you’re not able to put in the length you want, you can look to the neighbors for some gutter downspout extension ideas.

Quality of Soil

If your soil has a clay-like texture, the gutters can be shorter compared to if you have sandy soil. Sandier soil will always absorb the water quickly while clay soil will act as a repellant to the water. Clay soil will push the water away so you are able to get away with shorter extensions as the soil will push the water away.

If you are not sure of the texture of your soil, ask an expert to come and check this way you can be sure to put the right kind of extension.

Water Problems

The other most important thing that affects how long your extensions should be is water issues are your property. Consider if they are minor or major. Some experts might recommend that you put gravel under the gutters.

This will make the water spread out rather than congregate in one place as it flows out of the gutter. Sometimes you might need gravel and extensions.

Costs of Gutter Downspout Extensions

The cost of extensions depends on how many gutter downspout parts you need. The longer you have to make the extensions, the more money you will need to spend. If the work is minor and you only need a small extension, you will not need to spend too much money.

Keep in mind though it’s a good idea to get extensions for all the gutters on the home so that you know all the water is flowing in the correct direction.

If you are getting brand-new gutters and extensions at the same time, the average price is around $3000. The price could go up or down depending on the material you use for the extensions.

If you need help with gutter downspout extensions, you can give us a call today. We can view your home and give you a price quote.

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