A tutorial on how to bury a gutter downspout to move water away from the house.
All of our gutters do not do a very good job of getting the water away from the house. And if you know my husband (he was a home insurance adjuster for 5 years and worries about lots of possible losses, mostly water, but this could be a whole story so we will stop there) we had to fix the problem because it could flood our basement (not covered, you have to have flood insurance). We have had the downspout extension + connector for months just sitting on our downspouts.
It was doing the job but who wants a big black thing across their yard, not us. After our grass did not come in as well as we wanted, we decided it was time to put the extension underground.
UPDATE: We decided to upgrade our gutter downspout to a french drain so be sure to see the updating tutorial on underground gutter drainage.
How to bury a gutter downspout
TIP: Make sure your downspout extension and connector fit together and on your gutter.
First thing first, dig a trench. We researched how long and deep the trench should be. We found that the trench needs to be 10-12 inches deep with about a 2-inch slope. And the length is how long you want it but far enough away from the building, we decided we did not want less than 5 feet. If you are using tarp/box/bucket you will need it here to put your dirt in, we did not use anything, this will just make filling easier. Now start digging… (You do not have to go straight out from the downspout, it could be better to go at an angle but depends on your house.)
Time to take off the old angle off the gutter/downspout. Take a drill and remove the old screws.
Then remove the angle connector.
Have your downspout extension and connector together then place on your gutter.
Now time to screw them into place.
Take your sheet metal screws (I found them in the gutter section at our local hardware store) and drill them into the connector and the gutter. TIP: We found it was easier to drill a hole through just the plastic connector then screws on.
After you have attached the connector with screws, you will need to put screws in the connector and extension to hold them together. And because my husband likes to make sure it was not coming off, we placed 3 screws in each section but you would be fine with 2.
Next push the downspout into the hole and cut to the length of the hole using a razor blade.
SIDE NOTE: This is when some type of emitter should be placed, we did not do this in this tutorial but in our underground gutter drainage post we did. The emitter is so that the pipe can be cleaned out at a later date if needed.
Then it’s time to fill in the hole. Kids helped out with this one.
Now you should have a nice new downspout that will drain away from the house/building.
We finished both downspouts in our backyard but still have to do the front which will be more exciting.
Cost Breakdown for ONE:
Downspout Extension- $5.50
Downspout Connector- $4.40
Screws Box- $2.60
Everything else we had- FREE
Worth the cost of water flooding our basement.
Interested in more How to bury a gutter downspout? Here another post you might enjoy: How to extend a downspout by This Old House
Or you will love these other landscaping projects of ours:
- Sprinkler System Installation
- DIY Concrete Landscape Edging
- Automatic Watering System For Plants
- Build a simple hose sprinkler
- Install a rain barrel
And don’t forget you can see before and afters in our full house tour by clicking HERE.