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Disconnect Downspouts Do-It-Yourself

Downspout Disconnection
Do-It-Yourself Instructions

What you’ll need:

  • Hacksaw
  • Tape measure
  • Hammer
  • Screwdriver
  • Drill
  • Pliers
  • Metal file
  • Sheet metal screws
  • Concrete and Water (to make cement)
  • Newspaper
  • Downspout elbow
  • Splash pads
  • Downspout pipe extension
  • Brackets to secure the downspout to the building
  • Protective equipment (gloves, safety glasses, etc.)

Step one:

Measure 9″ (23cm) up from where the downspout enters the sewer connection with the sewer stand pipe. Make a mark on the downspout at the 9″ location.

Step two:

Cut the downspout at the mark with a fine blade hacksaw. Make sure to remove the cut piece and do not drop it down the drain. Use a metal file to remove the rough edge of the downspout.

Step three:

Be sure to cap the sewer standpipe — the open pipe remaining when the downspout is disconnected. This prevents water from going in. It also stops animals from falling into the opening, getting trapped, and having to be rescued. Place a balled-up newspaper in the standpipe. Fill the standpipe with 4″ of cement. Place a rubber or PVC cap on the top of the standpipe- (Optional).

Step four:

Insert the downspout into the elbow (if you put the elbow into the downspout, it will leak). You may need to crimp the end of the downspout with a pair of pliers to get a good fit.

Step five:

Attach a downspout pipe extension to carry water away from the house and foundation. You can use a hacksaw to cut the extension to the desired length. Be sure to insert the elbow into the extension to prevent leaks. Drill a hole on either side and secure the elbow and extension with sheet metal screws. To prevent erosion where the water drains, you can place a splash pad at the end of the downspout extension.

Please note: When redirecting the rain water from the disconnected downspout, water should flow onto the ground or run off safely. It is important to ensure that:

1. Water flows away from your foundation walls
2. Water does not negatively impact your neighbor’s property
3. Water does not flow directly onto a City sidewalk

Step six:

To schedule your follow-up appointment once you have removed the unauthorized connection(s), or if you need instruction or assistance with the removal of these unauthorized connections, please contact Ellen Derr at or (570) 323-6148 to make an appointment.



The WSA cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the information or its application to any particular property. Customers should where possible verify the information before acting on it. Where appropriate, professional advice and service should be sought from a knowledgeable and licensed plumber, contractor, or civil engineer.

While we endeavour to provide accurate information, it is provided strictly “as is” and the WSA makes no representations or warranties as to the accuracy, reliability, completeness, or suitability of the information provided. Customers relying on this information and this web site do so entirely at their own risk. In no event will the WSA be liable for any decision made or action taken in reliance on this information. The WSA does not accept and specifically disclaims any and all liability for any injury, loss or damage whatsoever incurred as a result of the use of, reliance on, the information provided by the WSA and in no event will the WSA be liable to you or to any third party for any direct, indirect, incidental, consequential, special or exemplary damages or lost profit, including any property damage or loss or personal injury, associated with, resulting from or arising out of any use or misuse of this information.

The WSA would like to acknowledge the City of Toronto for the compilation of the information listed above. The step by step instructions listed in this presentation were taken in part from the City of Toronto’s website as they applied to the WSA. In addition, the City of Toronto prepared a video to demonstrate the steps above, which has also been provided for you to view.  Click the “additional information” button on the “Downspouts Disconnection” page on this site, there you will find a link to the video.