underground downspout drain - drainage system connected to gutters

Underground Downspout Drain (A Beginners Guide)

Most people believe that an underground downspout drain is the same as a gutter.

The gutter and underground downspout drain are two different parts of a residential drainage system that allows your house to survive millions of gallons of water. Ten inches of rain over the course of 5-6 months on a 1,360-square-foot roof can yield 8,160 gallons of rainwater.

That’s more than enough water to destroy a home and its foundation if not properly handled. So, to keep your house safe, it’s important to know about downspouts. Let’s get started with the basics.

What is an Underground Downspout Drain?

An underground downspout drain is a pipe that connects to the gutters of your roof. Its purpose is to carry rainwater to an underground drainage system that dumps the water away from your house.

The downspout helps protect your home from water damage on the exterior and interior of your house. This is why underground downspout drains are an essential component of any residential drainage system.

underground downspout drain being trenched into front yard of homeowner
A trench is dug so the underground downspout can (be hidden and) deliver rainwater from the gutters to the city’s stormwater system. This drain system is made out of PVC material for its durability.

Where is the Underground Downspout Drain Located?

Downspouts connect to the part of a gutter that runs down the side of your house. They are usually placed near a corner of a house at the steepest angle. This allows proper water runoff. Then they carry that water to the underground drainage system.

Runoff also will help prevent the build-up of moss or mildew on your roof or where the roof meets the walls of a house.

Choosing a Good Undergound Downspout Drain

A downspout is made out of any of several different metals, including galvanized steel, stainless steel, aluminum, PVC, plastic, and copper. Here’s how we categorize them.

Keep in mind, a portion of the downspout goes underground. So, it’s important that the materials you use for this part of your water runoff drainage system are made of a material that would be approved by a plumber’s code.

It should be sturdy, long-lasting, and durable. Typically, the underground drains are made of clay, PVC (a plastic material that is durable), or a perforated plastic pipe.

Going the DIY Route

Installing an underground downspout drain yourself is one way to save money. If you decide to do it yourself, keep these tips in mind:

  • Avoid choosing the wrong sized downspout.
  • Install enough downspouts to fit the needs of your gutter system, we recommend installing one every 20 feet.
  • Try to install at the corner of your gutters to optimize the water collection.
  • Don’t ignore safety protocols.
  • Use an underground drain material that has durability and longevity.

Call 1-Tom-Plumber

Don’t hesitate to contact us here or call us at 1-Tom-Plumber (1-866-758-6237) if you need help with choosing the downspout to fit your needs. 

1-Tom-Plumber’s certified team of plumbers and drain technicians respond immediately to any emergency plumbing, drain cleaning, or water damage problem. We also handle the excavation of underground water lines and sewer main lines. Our immediate-response team is available every day and night of the year, even on holidays.

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