What to consider during downpipe installation

Choosing downpipes might seem like a simple task. You may even think they’re easy to install yourself. But there are a few things to consider before you go down this path. Downpipes play a vital role in protecting the structural integrity of your gutters and roof, so while downpipe installation may seem basic, it’s actually very important.

Here are some things to consider when choosing the right downpipes for your home.

What style of downpipes do you want?

Downpipes fortunately do not vary in style all that much. There are plenty of colours to choose from, but ultimately you’ll be choosing between square and round pipes. Really, they function pretty much the same. So, your decision here is mostly a cosmetic choice.

One thing that people like about square downpipes is that they sit flush against the wall. If your home generally has a lot of straight lines, square pipes usually look the best. However, round downpipes are essentially the same, they’re just held to the wall with a special clip, and they also look pleasing to the eye. It’s all down to personal preference really.

Do you have heavy rainfall in your area?

In Queensland, we have a lovely climate most of the time. However, with heavy rainfall and regular storms, Queensland roofs can take a belting. Your downpipes play a crucial role in managing heavy rainfall because they draw water away from your gutters. Without downpipes, your gutters would simply become overloaded with water and ultimately collapse.

If you do experience heavy rainfall, your gutters and downpipe system are paramount. It’s worth investing in quality downpipes, and your roofing contractor will have some advice for you on the right type. As a side note, you may also want to consider gutter guards or other protective measures to stop downpipes from becoming clogged with debris. A blocked downpipe is essentially the same as not having one at all.

Downpipes colour

This is purely an aesthetic consideration, much like the shape of your pipes. You can find downpipes in a huge range of colours so there is guaranteed to be one that works well with your home. Most homes use the same colour downpipes as their guttering, but some people prefer the traditional white pipes regardless of their house colour.

This is really a personal preference and there’s no right or wrong answer here. Your roofing expert will be able to help with some advice, but you can also look around the neighbourhood and see what sort of colour combinations look good on similar houses.

How many downpipes do you need?

We’ll touch more on this shortly, but there are strict building codes in Australia that must be adhered to. And yes, that even applies to downpipe installation and guttering. It’s not necessarily about how well you fix them to the wall or connect them to the guttering (although you would obviously want to do this properly too). It’s more about the number of downpipes you should use.

Typically, the standard is that no downpipe should collect water from more than 12m of guttering. It’s a little more complex than that though, because you need to consider the roof pitch, the catchment area and the amount of rain you usually get. You can research these requirements online, but this type of planning should ideally be done by a roofing professional.

Adhering to building standards

We just spoke about building standards, and the particular ones to consider here are the Building Code of Australia and Australian Standards AS/NZS 3500.3 – Plumbing and Drainage. These standards should be followed by all builders and roofing contractors, but also by anybody doing a DIY job. It might not affect you right now, but if you ever try to sell your home and building inspection uncovers some mistakes in this area, ignorance won’t be accepted as an excuse.

Like any building works that aren’t approved or up to code, you would need to fix the issue before selling, which is more time and money wasted. So, for those reasons, it’s usually best to hire a professional roofing contractor to assist with any guttering and downpipe installation.

Looking for professional downpipe installation?

Whether you’re building a new home, re-roofing your home or you simply need to replace your guttering and downpipes, Brastin Roofing can help. We’ll ensure everything is installed correctly and to Australia’s building standards. Plus, we’ve got an enormous range of colours to choose from. Contact our team today and find out how we can help.

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