A Drainage Spout, downspout, waterspout,[1] downpipe, drain spout, roof drain pipe,[2] leader is a pipe for carrying rainwater from a rain gutter.

Rain gutter and downspout
A downspout in Strasbourg Place du Chateau.

Downspouts are usually vertical and usually extend down to ground level. There is generally a bend of 70 degrees at the bottom. The water is directed away from the building's foundation, to protect the foundations from water damage. The water is usually piped to a sewer, or let into the ground through seepage.

The first ever downspout to be installed was in 1240 on the Tower of London, as it was whitewashed and the newly painted walls had to be protected from the rain. Decorative heads are sometimes added, these being low-height gargoyles.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Merriam Webster Online, Thesaurus".
  2. ^ Francis Joseph Patry 1974. Roof Drain Arrangement. United States Patent 3909412