In many ways, downpipes are something of an afterthought when it comes to building design. And, unfortunately, this often leads to poor downpipe design and a clogged downpipe!
One of the most common issues associated with downpipes is the accumulation of debris (such as tree leaves). It’s quite easy for mould to form on the downpipe given its purpose, though this will often depend on the material and finish. Internal downpipes play an essential role in roof drainage along with box gutters, eave gutters, and overflow design features. There is even a special class of plumbers known as roof plumbers with qualifications to address this specific area.
Thankfully, like drain and pipe specialists, we have the tools, the techniques, and the qualifications to tackle piping problems. No matter how high up or awkward the downpipe is placed, we can flush out the debris and repair your roof drainage system. This will allow your commercial or residential drainage system to flow properly once more.
If you are having any trouble with your pipes, call in the experts. We will clear and repair your downpipes asap so you can get on with your life.
Call us now on (03) 9331 6633.
What is a downpipe?
A downpipe is basically a pipe that carries water ‘down’ from roof gutters to an underwater drainage system. According to Australian regulations, each downpipe should serve no more than 12 meters of gutter. There are 4 types, 2 round and 2 rectangular, with varying diameters. There are also different materials that can be used.
How long should a downpipe last?
Downpipes are not designed to last as long as pipes. This stands to reason. There is no need for them to be as durable because the added weight would put stress on the building. And underground pipes are harder to access, meaning the need for them to last longer is greater. A downpipe will typically last about 20 years, but it depends on water volume, design, climate, materials, maintenance, and many more criteria.
What are the rules and regulations surrounding internal downpipes?
Many of the rules and regulations surrounding pipes are found in AS/NZS 3500.3 Stormwater Drainage 22.214.171.124. AS/NZS 3500.3 is referenced in the Plumbing Code of Australia (PCA) which is part 3 of the National Construction Code (NCC). But the primary regulation is part 2 of the NCC, which directly governs this type of service, eave gutters and box gutters. These rules are enforced by the Victoria Building Authority (VBA) and local councils.
How many pipes should a residential home have?
It doesn’t really matter the type of building. Just divide the total roof surface area by the maximum capacity per downpipe. As per AS/NZS 3500.3, the maximum catchment per downpipe is 47m2. The downpipes need to be evenly displaced and overflow methods also have to be taken into consideration. It is the responsibility of the home designed to ensure that all the appropriate downpipes are there. As mentioned above, downpipes cannot serve more than 12 meters of gutter.
What are the problems associated with broken pipes?
If you are careless with water on your property and it damages your neighbours in some way, you leave yourself open to a lawsuit. You have to ensure that no runoff touches other property. Of course, it will also damage your property in the meantime. It is not aesthetically pleasing to have pools of water in your front yard or a broken gutter where water leaks onto your walls and windows. Aside from this, however, you are relatively safe. Downpipes are good practice and aesthetically pleasing as opposed to being a core structural element of your home. But they still need to be look at from time to time by qualified professionals!
Do the downpipes need to be connected to the stormwater?
Downpipes do not need to be connected to the stormwater drainage, and there is no legal requirement to do so. However, they frequently are for the purpose of efficiency where possible. It is good practice and often incorporated into the initial building design.
The bottom line is that downpipes should be regularly cleaned, repaired, and maintained. You can schedule it in while getting other plumbing work done or approach it as a standalone process.
To ensure you have adequate roof drainage, call Mr Pipe for internal downpipes repairs now.