As you already know, gutters are an important part of the exterior of your house. All homeowners will need to maintain them in some way at some point. But before you set out on getting up high on a ladder and cleaning out the leaves, dirt, and whatever else may be residing inside your downspouts. You first need to familiarize yourself with everything there is to know about gutters and downspouts or their associated components.


As the name suggests, your downspout’s main purpose is to serve as a channel through which water can be diverted from the gutter’s edge and safely discharged from your property. There are three main components of a downspout:

  • The spout itself.
  • A support arm (or elbows).
  • A splash block to keep water away from foundation walls.


Some gutters and downspout contractors choose to place two or more elbows in line with one another when installing the downspouts near the foundation of a house to accomplish three things:

  • Allow for more flexibility in influencing the direction in which water flows out of the downspout.
  • Boost strength and reduce wear and tear on both elbows and spouts themselves, especially when it’s windy outside.
  • Keep water away from your foundation walls. The additional elbow keeps the flow of water away from your foundation.

You can purchase elbows in various angles to be used with your downspouts based on the specific direction the downspouts face and how far out they protrude. They come in different sizes, too. So it may be possible for you to use less than two depending on the amount of elbow you require.




Vertical downspouts are generally used when gutters are installed on two-story houses. They offer an easy way to rid of any water collecting in them. If you’re not careful, however, vertical downspouts can end up working against you. This is because if the water ever freezes, it can expand and cause your gutters to fall away from your house or even damage the gutter supports themselves. It’s one of the big reasons why many experts recommend avoiding vertical downspouts on houses with steep roofs when using metal gutters.


Placing one end of the downspout on the gable end of your house ensures that water will flow out of it in an unobstructed way. It also allows all debris collected inside the gutter to be deposited into the ground, preventing clogging and further damage to either your gutters and downspout.


Gutters are typically installed with coping materials, so they don’t rot or rust away. They can be plastic or aluminum and come in different shapes. The most popular type is corrugated because it’s inexpensive, lightweight, easy to work with, and fits just about any gutter size. Some experts also recommend investing in seamless gutters, which are more long-lasting.


There are numerous gutter systems to choose from on the market today. So homeowners should do some research before deciding on one system over another. Some are more expensive than others, but your decision will ultimately depend on how much you’re willing to spend on a gutter system.

ROOF TIGER, located in Peoria, IL, offers gutter installation services for new gutters and downspout installation, gutter repairs to residential properties. Whether you’re looking to install a single new downspout or have an entire system installed on your home, ROOF TIGER has the expertise to get it done right. Keep up with us on our Facebook page, so you don’t miss out on any of our new installations!