If you’re a competent DIYer, it’s not too difficult to install guttering and downpipes if you’ve got uPVC ones. uPVC is a type of plastic and therefore is relatively light, but if you’ve got cast iron or copper guttering you might find it more difficult to replace and install.
When you install new guttering and downpipes, you’ll need to remove your old ones. It’s a good idea to tie some rope or cable ties around the existing guttering while you dismantle them so they don’t fall down.
We’ve explained how to replace guttering in a previous FAQ, so here we’ll focus on the downpipes. It’s simple if you have the right tools, including a sturdy ladder, a drill and screwdriver and all the fixings and brackets you’ll need.
- Hang a plumb bob from the outlet to the drain to use as a guide while you draw several marks on the wall with a pencil to show you where the downpipe will run.
- Join the marks up with a straight edge, creating a line to show where the centre of the downpipe will be.
- Position a downpipe clip at the top of wall, in the centre of the pencil line. Mark the position of its fixing holes on the wall. If you need an offset bend, put a downpipe clip directly below the bend.
- Repeat the process down the wall. Make sure there is no more than 1.8 metres between pipe clips.
- Refer to the guttering manufacturer’s instructions to see which drill bit is required. Use a drill to drill the fixing holes and insert wall plugs.
- Fit the first piece of downpipe starting from the outlet and moving towards the drain.
- If you need to add more downpipe, join the two pieces with a pipe socket and clip. Leave a 10mm gap between the end of the pipe and the bottom of the pipe socket, because it will probably expand. Then attach a pipe clip over the joint.
- Continue attaching pipe clips down the length of the downpipe.
- If you need to, fit a downpipe show to direct the water into the drain. Attach a downpipe clip directly below the socket of the shoe.
Although it seems easy, it’s always best to leave guttering works to the professionals. They’ve got experience with fitting neat and tidy guttering and downpipes, and they are used to working at height.