T: 01793 422 040

T: 01793 422 040

E: sales@draindepot.co.uk

Traditional Cast Iron Guttering Re-engineered to Modern Standards

When it comes to deciding on what rainwater system to choose, it can be easy to think of cast iron guttering, hopper heads and downpipes as being a bit outdated. Nice to look at in terms of heritage and tradition, but too costly to buy and requiring too much maintenance to suit modern living. Nothing could be further from the truth. Using traditional sand casting techniques combined with modern manufacturing standards, specialist manufacturer Alumasc produces a range of heritage cast iron guttering and downpipes that makes it possible to enjoy the best of both worlds – cast iron guttering that looks fantastic, has a modern application, and will last for many years to come.

Image of Drain Depot's Cast Iron Drains

Modern then, contemporary now

When cast iron guttering first became popular in the late 18th century – yes, it has been around for a while! – this new type of metal rainwater system was very much the PVCu of its day and was widely welcomed in Victorian times as a much cheaper alternative to lead. The Industrial Revolution saw coke first used for the commercial production of cast iron and by the middle of the 19th century, cast iron guttering was used on all types of structures and buildings up and down the country. In fact, until the 1960s, when plastic and PVCu started to become popular, cast iron was still the most common type of guttering material to be found anywhere in the UK.

Cast iron guttering was prized as a practical and efficient rainwater system, and decorative features, such as hopper heads, were added to make the guttering more attractive. It was common at the time to stamp these with a date, emblem or coat of arms - architectural features that can still be seen on many of our older buildings today. Made from a strong material that was relatively simple to fit, required little maintenance and was highly durable, it’s easy to see why cast iron quickly became so popular – and remains so well loved by property owners, architects, and contractors today.

Where can cast iron guttering be used?

As the first mass-produced type of metal guttering, cast iron systems can be seen on all kinds of period and listed buildings in every town in Britain. Council buildings, libraries, hospices, schools, and churches from the Victorian period onwards were invariably fitted with cast iron guttering and downpipes, as were humble cottages, terraced houses and farm buildings. Today, cast-iron guttering is still widely used on old or refurbished properties, including barn conversions, farm houses, and Victorian and Edwardian style houses. Cast-iron guttering and downpipes provide a highly effective rainwater gathering system, and also add character and style to a building.

So, what’s new?

If you own an older property or plan on refurbishing a former church, terraced cottage, or listed building, our range of modern cast iron guttering and downpipes offers the perfect solution. The cast iron guttering manufactured by Alumasc and supplied by us, comes as standard in a grey transit primer which will require painting on site, or we can supply your requirement factory painted in black (RAL9005) which is ready to be installed – saving you valuable time & money.

Upon request we can also supply cast iron guttering in many heritage colours including white, chestnut brown, anthracite grey, moss green, flower blue & traffic red. Suitable for both projecting and flush eaves applications, we have everything you need for the complete cast iron system, including a 1.83 m length of half round gutter with traditional spigot and socket jointing, cast iron unions, fascia brackets, running outlets, stop ends, and rafter brackets. In terms of performance, cast iron has always been prized for its longevity and our modern selection comes with a life expectancy of 40 years. Cast iron is also 100% recyclable.

Image of Drain Depot length of gutter

 Length of Gutter

Image of Drain Depot BracketRise & Fall Bracket Image of Drain Depot Running OutletRunning Outlet

The benefits of cast iron guttering

There are a number of reasons cast iron guttering is suitable for all new build, restoration, replacement and conservation projects:

• Longevity – cast iron is a strong, durable material. Properly installed and regularly maintained, these gutters will last for many decades.
• Weather resistant – primed and painted, cast iron will withstand all kinds of weather without showing any damage.
• Aesthetic appeal – cast iron looks great and adds real style and elegance to a property.
• Affordability – the initial cost of installing cast iron guttering may be higher than PVCu, but its longevity and low maintenance means you won’t be faced with replacement costs any time soon.


Here are a few tips to keep your cast iron guttering in tip top shape for years to come:

• Clean out all guttering of leaves, any build-up of sludge and other deposits at least twice a year.
• Check guttering for leaks, especially at the joints, and replace the wet seals as necessary, as well as any old bolts.
• Check for rust and if present, rub down thoroughly, prime and repaint the affected area.

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