Undoubtedly, clogged downpipes and blockages to gutters are one of the biggest plumbing problems for homeowners. But you no longer need to be scared to keep your drain flowing freely. There are ways to keep your stormwater system in good condition and avoid plumbing problems.
We agree that someone does not want to think about a blocked downpipe unless they are stuck in a ‘sticky’ situation. And if you are here reading this guide, the chances are that you are in the same boat - you have a blocked downpipe. Trust us when we say that your blocked downpipe can be fixed with a bit of effort.
If you tap the pipe along its length at intervals and you hear a solid sound, this indicates you have a blockage. You do not need to make an appointment with a trained plumber to sort out the issue of your blocked downpipe. All you need to do is implement some of the time-tested, simple DIY methods to help you clear a blocked downpipe without fail.
This guide will take you through some of the top methods you can implement to clear a blocked downpipe. So, without any more delay, let’s quickly look at removing a blocked stormwater system!
7 DIY Tips to Unclog Downpipe
1. Use The Garden Hose Or Water Jetter
If some objects are blocking your downpipe, using a garden hose to clear it is best. A stream of water directly from the hose can help clear blocked downpipes immediately.
Consider banging it with a soft rubber mullet if the downpipe still does not function properly. Any debris that might have been stuck in the blocked pipe will get dislodged when you do that.
If this method fails, use the hose up and down the blocked drainpipe. A steady water stream through the hose will surely clear the downpipe. But sometimes, you might find that the hose is not helping in removing the blockage from the downpipe.
In that case, you will require great service and professional tools like a stronger water force to clear the clog. You can drop by the local hardware store to look for a high-pressure water jetter. With this, the water pressure will be highest, and when you use it on the downpipe, it will surely help clear the clog.
But remember that for using a water jetter, you need to take proper protection. Because of the high water intensity, you should wear eye and face protection. We suggest you pick up the essential protective gear from the same hardware store where you buy the water jetter.
If you’re not up for this challenge, let your trusted local plumber do this. Check us out for our plumbing services that come with guaranteed workmanship.
2. Use A Drain Rod
A drain rod or sturdy wire can be their best friend for someone planning to use DIY techniques to clean a blocked downpipe. True to its name, it is like a stiff wire that helps dislodge any elements blocking the downpipe.
Vacuuming is another great way to ensure your downpipe is free of clogs or overflowing gutters. But regular vacuums are not suited for this task! You will require a wet/dry vacuum or gutter vacuum to handle the dry and wet waste.
Remember that it can create a mess around the plughole when incorrectly used. Thus, before you begin with the work, seal the plughole properly. Once you attach it well, please turn it on at a high suction speed and adjust until the blockage is cleared.
You must keep doing this for 2-3 minutes, after which you can expect a cleared downpipe.
4. Check For Objects
When you talk to a plumber, you would be surprised to know how often they find objects stuck in the downpipes (tennis balls, pine needles and bird nests in your roof and gutter). It will help if you do a preliminary check before trying other ways to clear the blockage.
But make sure that when inspecting the pipes, you use hand gloves to avoid touching any gunk. Moreover, do not forget to use a sturdy ladder for this job. If the ladder is unstable, you will have difficulty handling the task.
When everything fails, you should consider reinstalling the downpipe. If the block is too severe, the chances are that DIY tricks won’t clear it. This is your last resort, and you would have to remove the downpipe, remove the debris and reinstall it.
And in case you notice that the downpipe is severely damaged, it is best to put a new one in its place. Also, consider installing gutter guards to keep the build-up of leaves and other debris from your stormwater drains.
6. Know When To Change
Often, you will see that the blockage problem keeps reappearing, and nothing you do prevents it. Then, you dismantle the pipe to check for permanent damage.
You will often see that the downpipe has worn out with time and usage. This is more frequent when the downpipe is swan-shaped.
In that case, you might have to consider changing it completely. However, you can take a second opinion from a trained plumber before making this decision. If build-ups cause permanent damage, they will tell you it is best not to spend more time and money fixing it.
Even though it might feel like a significant investment initially, changing the entire downpipe will save you more money in the long run. Constant repair works take a lot of effort and are not cost-effective.
7. Proper Maintenance
If you want the downpipes to work efficiently without getting clogged often or prevent downpipe blockages, you must take proper care of them. There is no need for a trained plumber to complete the whole process; you can do it yourself with some effort.
You must install a suitable filter on the downpipe like any other drain or pipe. This would help restrict the gunk from entering the pipe and building up over time.
Remember that even the best downpipes will get clogged over time without maintenance. Cleaning your gutters regularly will also prevent clogs in your downpipe. To ensure you do not miss out on the cleaning part, you can set a monthly reminder to ensure the cleaning is done on time.
Clearing Your Clogged Downpipe
With that, we have now reached the end of this comprehensive guide.
With the detailed explanation of clogged downpipes, you must have understood that apart from applying all the methods we have mentioned, you need preventative measures to regularly maintain the downpipe and your entire stormwater system. These blocked downpipes are never going to go unless you work on them. If left unattended, the chances are that it will only get worse with time and cause flooding.
Contact our trusted local plumber to perform efficient regular maintenance, clean-up, and unblock a downpipe. We’ve got 24/7 operating hours to respond to urgent repairs. And for complicated plumbing works, like cutting overhanging trees to prevent litter and tree roots which need the right tools like high-pressure jet blasters and safety harnesses for tricky or slippery roofs, it’s best to leave them in the hands of a good local plumber.
Check out our plumbing services to clear blocked downpipe and see if your downpipe configuration is ideal. Request a free and reasonable quote from our plumbers. Our professional service and fantastic job come with guaranteed excellent workmanship.
We hope you enjoyed reading. Until next time!