Checking for Proper Downspout Drainage

Checking for Proper Downspout Drainage

Potential water intrusion issue
This downspout extension is missing altogether. The water from the roof will drain right onto the foundation wall.

Did you know that downspouts draining too close to your foundation can cause water intrusion into your basement or foundation? It can also cause the soil around you foundation to erode away; potentially causing settlement issues with the house. Your home inspector should be checking for the downspout draining at least 4-6 feet from the foundation.

I recently saw this situation at a house. The downspout was draining straight down next to the foundation. Not only is the water not being directed away from the house, but there is nothing to slow the water down as it comes off the second story roof. So the water is coming out the end of this downspout at a high velocity and making the erosion worse around the foundation. The damage from this issue will not always appear immediately, it could be years before any issues start to occur. But it’s far easier and cheaper to fix the issue by adding and extension now than paying someone to fix the foundation later.

If you would like more information about getting you home inspected please call Justin Campbell at Gears Home Inspections (317-939-1407).

Water intrusion path included
This diagram shows the proper downspout extension compared to one that is too short

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