Preventing & Clearing Frozen Downspout


Preventing & Clearing Frozen Downspout

Frozen downspout can happen during the dead of winter. If you’re experiencing this problem fear not because we have what is more than likely causing the problem and what you can do to prevent them from being frozen for too long.

First of all you might be wonder, ” How does this happen?”

Frozen downspouts occur during the winter during or after winter weather occurs. There are a few likely scenarios that can cause ice accumulation in downspouts. If there is a large amount of snow on the ground that is covering the bottom mouth of the downspout. It will cause your downspouts to freeze. Debris in your downspouts can also cause frozen downspouts, as well as elbows of downspouts because the act as a collection point for still water and when the temperatures are cold enough, ice will form. Finally ice dams along the roof can accelerate the freezing of downspouts, if they sit on your roof for too long.

Preventing & Clearing Frozen Downspout

“What Should I do?”

If it seems like the cold weather won’t be lasting for more than a couple days and you’ve removed all the snow accumulation by the bottom of the downspout, leave the downspout alone. The warmer weather will allow the downspouts to thaw and melt. If you live in an area where you might not see above freezing point for a while you have a couple of options…

How To Thaw A Frozen Downspout

Fight frozen water with warmer water. If the weather is permitting and you can safely climb a ladder, pour warm water into the top of the downspout. This should be good enough to thaw minor ice buildup and break up the blockage. Another way you can thaw is by running hot water down the OUTSIDE of the downspout near the blocked area. If neither of these ways help, please DO NOT use force by striking your downspout. This could cause more damage than good.

Just heating up the downspout will do the trick, at least for melting the ice, it will do nothing if there is a large blockage due to debris ( this is why cleaning your gutters at least twice a year is very important).  If none of these trick help, please call a professional. Having consistently frozen downspout require immediate attention especially if the weather is looking grim in the future. If left unattended this ice may back up all the way to the gutters. Creating an extra weight and leaving more opportunities for leaks and improper drainage to happen. This leads to expensive repairs and a possibility for your gutters to tear away from your home.

Preventing & Clearing Frozen Downspout

 “How Can I Prevent This From Happening?”

If it’s already too late to protect your gutter, try some of the example we’ve listed above or call a professional, such as Gutters & Guards, Inc. Minimize the chances by wrapping your downspouts with heat tape or using a heated gutter guard. This will also help prevent ice dams in your gutters as well as ice build up in downspouts. Make sure to clean your gutters out at least twice a year to prevent debris build up. When in doubt call the professionals. You can also invest in Gutter Guards. This will keep debris from building up in your gutters & downspouts and cut your gutter cleaning time spent in half.


For a free estimate on gutter installation, repairs or gutter leaf guards, call us today! Our experienced team will take the guess-work out of the process, and make sure that your home is protected.

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