Western PA Downspouts & Drainage Systems

Western Pennsylvania Downspouts and Drainage Systems

Western Pennsylvania downspouts and gutters are an extremely important part of a roof’s drainage system.  Routine cleaning and maintenance greatly increases the life of the drainage system and will save money in the long run.  A properly functioning system will route water away from your home in wet weather and prevent costly water damages.  Doing the maintenance yourself will also keep money in your pocket.

Drainage System Maintenance

Keeping downspouts and gutters free of debris and leaves is essential.  You will want to check and clean them twice a year or according to your area’s wind and rain seasons.  The best times to check downspouts and gutters are after the windy season and before the rainy season. If you have implemented a maintenance schedule for your Canonsburg home also include downspout and gutter check-ups and cleaning as well. 

Tools & Equipment

Start by making an examination from the ground. Make a note of any visible branches or leaves.  Gutter-cleaning tools will come in handy and are available at your local hardware store or even online.  There are also gutter-cleaning kits available as accessories for many shop vacuum cleaners.

Some things you can include in your gutter-cleaning kit are paintbrushes, hand brooms, and similar tools to sweep debris out of the gutters. A shop vacuum cleaner works great and eliminates the added step of bagging the debris.

For the downspouts, an electrician’s snake will come in handy.  Use this tool to remove debris down the length of your downspouts. Installing leaf strainers in downspout outlets will also help reduce buildup in hard to reach areas.

Checking the System

Test the drainage system on new installations, newly purchased homes or older drainage systems that have not been properly maintained. You will want to make sure downspouts are set correctly and that there are no leaks.  The testing procedures are very easy and only require a bucket of water. 

To begin you should know that downspouts and gutters should be set to around 1/16 inch per inch of guttering.  This ensures that water will move through the drainage system without pooling and causing damage.   To test the pitch, pour your bucket of water into the gutter and watch the flow.  If water exits the system smoothly, the system is working well.  Pooling water indicates low spots and can cause problems in heavy rain.


To fix low spots, bend the hanger supporting the gutter to realign the gutter’s pitch.  Adding extra hangers to low spots may also work.  Calling a roof professional is always an option, even if it is just for advice.

Repairing your downspouts and gutters may be necessary.  Small holes and rusty areas can easily be repaired.  Remove all of the rust in an area with a steel brush, and then coat the area with a rust treatment or rust resistant paint.  Let the area fully dry.  Applying a 1/8-inch layer of plastic cement that is made for gutter and Canonsburg roof repair can repair a small hole.  If the hole you want to repair is large, you will want to replace the gutter section with new Canonsburg gutter or downspout material.  Make sure to test the repairs by pouring water down the gutter and downspouts after they are completely dry to see if there are any water leaks. 

With regular drainage system checks, maintenance, and repair, the drainage system of any roof will last several times longer than without regular maintenance.  These simple tips will prevent damage and increase the structural longevity. If you encounter a repair that is to difficult or you need the advice of a local roofing professional, please don’t hesitate to contact Peak Precision Contracting!