Carefree Gutter Guard
701 Industry Drive Hampton VA 23661 757-690-2641
Carefree Gutter Guard
4944 Millridge Parkway E Midlothian VA 23112 804-709-3760

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Types of Downspouts

Close Up of Gutter System Downspout | Carefree Gutter Guard

Downspouts are an important tool in protecting your home from water and foundation damage. Having a functional drainage system in place will keep your house from being susceptible to a wide variety of expensive and dangerous issues. As water accumulates on your home’s roof, from rainfall or snowfall, moisture or condensation, your gutter system collects water and keeps it from dripping along the exterior wall and puddling on the ground.

Downspouts are a crucial part of the gutter system. They are vertical, pipe-like devices connected to gutters. Downspouts work to redirect water and safely lead it away from your home and towards a designated drainage area.

When considering which types of downspouts you’d like to install on your house, it’s important to keep quality and quantity in mind. Ensuring you have an adequate amount of high-quality downspouts attached to your roof will maximize efficiency, risk mitigation and cost-effectiveness. After all, a few low-grade downspouts can create issues, and ultimately render the utility of your gutters and downspouts useless.

There are three main types of downspouts: K-Style, Round, and Rectangular. Each type has various advantages and disadvantages. Which types of downspouts are best for your home? Let’s explore more.


K-Style downspouts appear to be shaped like the letter K when viewed from the side. This particular type of downspout became popular in the 1960s, and the style remains a very popular choice among homeowners today.

Pros of K-Style downspouts:

  • K-Style downspouts fit well with any home design. Modern? Traditional? Craftsman? You name it. This type of downspout will look good with your home.
  • K-Style gutters are flat and can be nailed directly into the fascia board. This makes installation easy since it doesn’t require many brackets to hold it in place.
  • K-Style provides a seamless finish. A seamless finish ensures your gutters are less prone to leaks than other types of downspouts.
  • K-Style downspouts are durable. They can hold more water than any other types of downspouts.
  • K-Style gutters are made from many different materials. Aluminum, copper, galvanized steel, vinyl, the list goes on. Aluminum tends to be popular because it is rust-resistant, but copper downspouts prove to be extremely durable.

Cons of K-Style downspouts:

  • K-Style gutters are harder to clean. The shape of their corners make it slightly harder to fully clean. And keeping your gutters clear and clean is crucial!
  • K-Style downspouts may retain some water. Depending on the type of metal, this type of downspout can be more susceptible to corrosion.


Round  and half-round downspouts are becoming increasingly more popular for upscale homes to add architectural interest. They’re also commonly used to replicate original gutter and downspout systems for restoration projects.

Pros of round downspouts:

  • Round downspouts are available in both corrugated and smooth styles. Both corrugated and smooth downspouts can be steel and copper.
  • The round shape is very sturdy and tends to be much larger in diameter. These types of downspouts drain water most efficiently. Having a sturdy gutter system allows for peace of mind in storms or heavy precipitation.
  • Round downspouts are associated with period and retro-style architecture. There has recently been a resurgence of interest in traditional and upscale homes. They’re usually chosen for architectural appeal or historical authenticity as well.

Cons of round downspouts:

  • Round and half-round downspouts are difficult to adhere to the rest of your gutter syste,. Installation for these types of downspouts are time consuming which can favor hefty labor costs.
  • Round gutters are most expensive. When it comes to price, round and half-round gutters are the most expensive types of downspout. They require special threaded rods and hanger brackets to put them up and they also have reduced availability in the marketplace.


Rectangle downspouts are the second most common downspout style seen in homes. Another name for this type of downspout is a “box gutter” because it is essentially shaped like a rectangular box that runs down the side of a building or home.

Pros of rectangle downspouts:

  • Installation and expense are a breeze with rectangle downspouts. Rectangle downspouts are an inexpensive and time efficient solution for homeowners.
  • Rectangle downspouts are attached to the fascia board. This provides a functional flow of drainage water for effective performance.
  • Rectangle downspouts come in all shapes and sizes. Homeowners can find this type of downspout in a variety of different materials and sizes for the perfect fit to their home.

Cons of rectangle downspouts:

  • With sharp edges, rectangular downspouts can be difficult to clean. A buildup of debris can collect in the corners of this type of downspout.
  • Unlike round downspouts, rectangular downspouts can retain water. This type of downspout is not known to be the most efficient solution for water drainage.

Downspouts perform an important role of protecting your house from devastating damage. A well operating gutter system with properly functioning downspouts helps avoid water intrusion and foundation degradation.

The Carefree Gutter Guards team has been serving Virginia residents in Hampton Roads and Richmond for over 20 years. With more than 20,000 homes serviced and more than 1,000,000 feet of gutters installed, we’re proud to give our customers peace of mind during storms or heavy rainfall. 

Contact us today for more information about the types of downspouts available to you.