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I am doing some work around my gutter downspouts and found that underneath the ones at the front of my house, someone had buried 2-gallon plastic potting containers (upside down). There was a piece of fabric barrier above them too. There is nothing underneath the plastic bucket. Just curious if anyone has seen this before and if there is a purpose for them being there.

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I have a similar setup, but in my case it's about 6' from the house in a raised bed, directly in front of the one downspout on that side of the house. I've always wondered what it was for and was just thinking today about asking here. :) –  Niall C. Mar 21 '11 at 3:49

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up vote 10 down vote accepted

It's a strange method (to me, anyway) but my guess is someone put it there to prevent erosion. If you have water running from the downspout, without anything there it will basically pound a hole into the ground, as well as drain into your foundation, which can cause various problems including flooding of your basement, and cracked foundations.

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I guess it's the cheap equivalent of one of these:

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It's best though to have an extension and get it far away from your house, so that water is running downhill/away from your foundation.

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