Rain Dance?

Sooo…I needed to fix the downspout on my building and rolled out the fargle-snorker Saturday morning.

Felt kind of silly to work on a rain downspout. I mean, is it *ever* going to rain again?

Had a short window to get it done as I wasn’t quite up to getting up before the crack of dawn, and by 11am it would be too hot to work in the direct sun.

Below, you can see the facade on the red building is shifting outward. Note the crack at the back and then near my building (blue building) it is pushing the downspout pipe away from the building:

The facade has shifted on the red building, pushing my downspout off.

This is the other end of the red building’s facade, where it comes close to my building. Note the outward shift pushing the downspout away.

The view of the facade shift from the other end

A closeup showing the shift. The paint mark from when my building was painted (long ago…don’t know exactly when) shows that it has taken a while to get to this point.

A closer view

This is looking down at the red buildings roof flashing and facade right were it connects to my building, clearly showing how much it has shifted since this roof was installed.

Where their roof flashing and facade connect, showing the shift away from my building


I cut a piece of flashing long enough to wrap around the pipe one and a quarter times, coiled it up, and inserted it into the downspout. I then let it uncoil inside the downspout, and pulled it up onto the drain for a firm fit.

Fixing the downspout...

I then zapped a couple sheet-metal screws in…

Zap a screw or two in

Another screw or two, holds the flashing insert into the downspout…it is not connected to the roof drain, as when or if the facade shifts or falls off the building below, it will take the pipe out but not rip my drain off the side of the building.

Connecting the pipe to the flashing...

The new flashing "collar" in place.

I then shoved $20 worth of spray foam into this crack to seal between the buildings where the flashing cannot. Didn’t get a pic with the foam yet. Next week I’ll make sure it was enough foam, then I’ll add some flashing over the foam on the roof side to keep the sun from decaying it over time.

I filled this crack with spray foam...

We had to quit about then, as the intense sun and high temps were making everything metal way too hot to touch…the standpipe, the flashings, the truck, and tools. Just leaning on a flashing would burn me through my t-shirt. We went to 107 this day. Youch!

The reward for all that work…rain! This was the next morning. Apparently working on a downspout in the intense heat is something like a rain-dance…blessedly without me even having to get naked!

This, was the reward!

None of this is really going to help the little red building with its water problem…as its roof has a low spot right before the edge that collects water…this spot is probably 20 feet across. Pretty much any water the hits the section of roof is going inside the building through the screwholes, seams, and of course…the big nasty rust holes.

None of this helps the red building...as it has a holy roof.

I would love to see this little red building saved…it’ll make a great shop of some sort…even a barbers shop or a hole-in-the wall tamale place. Perhaps an art workshop even…but it needs a new roof and the facade reinforced…and soon…

Rust holes...

Lots more to do…but every bit that moves us forward helps. I really need to pull that roof drain and enlarge the hole through the wall to the roof, and probably add another drain or two. There is simply not enough drainage on that roof…

I have no leaks under light rain, but have several with very heavy rain, most likely because the rain is filling up on the roof…as it gets deeper any little imperfection becomes a leak.

Anyway…more later. Thanks to my friend Mike for the assistance and shooting some pics!

Daniel Meyer

About Daniel Meyer

Author. Adventurer. Electrician.
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