Rain chain without gutters

If you would like to replace your downspouts with a decorative rain chain, here are 17 fun DIY rain chain ideas to inspire you.

Incorporating items that are exclusively ornamental, such as paintings and statues, is an important part of decorating your home and garden. However, you can greatly expand your decorating options by adopting a simple philosophy: How can I accomplish a necessary function in an aesthetically pleasing way?

Rain chains, decorative alternatives to traditional metal or plastic downspouts, are a fantastic example of what this philosophy looks like in practice. They come in a wide variety of styles, but all have the same practical purpose: directing rainwater from rooftop gutters away from the house and to the ground (or to a storage vessel). Additionally, rain chains offer the benefit of being visually pleasing water features which enhance a home’s appearance.

Rain chains originated in Japan, where they have adorned houses and temples for hundreds of years. There they are called “kusari-doi”, or “chain gutter”. The first kusari-doi were created in the 1600s to adorn teahouses. These early examples used bamboo and palm ropes. In addition to being attractive, kusari-doi are valued for generating a pleasant white-noise effect as water drips or pours down them. Rain chains began gaining international popularity after Japan hosted the 1998 Winter Olympics and visiting style connoisseurs spotted them.

Some garden supply shops offer rain chains for purchase, but they are also easy to make and customize at home. Many different objects, from recycled household items to natural objects like stones, can be incorporated into a rain chain. You can use materials and color schemes that complement your home, or you can choose contrasting materials and colors to add an intriguing accent.

This article offers seventeen rain chain ideas of the many creative options that you can do yourself (DIY).

1. Ombre Rain Chain

Source: DIY Ombre Rain Chain – Design Sponge

This rain chain incorporates miniature terracotta pots in a gradient of different shades of blue. The pots are connected along the chain by running the chain through the drainage hole at the base of the pot. The possibilities for customizing color schemes and decorative designs on the miniature pots are endless.

2. Stone Rain Chain

Source: Dollar Store Crafts

This charming rain chain consists of polished stones wrapped into the links of a chain using thin wire. The links themselves are also connected with wire spirals. This rain chain could also hold polished shells or crystals.

3. Copper Tubing Rain Chain

Source: Instructables

Here we see a rain chain making clever use of recycled lengths of copper tubing. The tubing helps direct even heavy rainfall safely away from the house, and the oversized rings of copper create an appealing water feature.

4. Recycled Spoon

Source: Birds and Blooms

This rain chain made of recycled spoons has undeniable rustic charm. The spoon handles are used to create the chain itself, while the bowls are attached along it at angles to direct water.

5. Fork and Spoon

Source: I’m Going to Texas

This is another great example of a rain chain made from recycled materials, incorporating both spoons and forks. The tines of the forks are bent to create the chain, adding whimsical appeal. This is a great project to put together with old silverware of your own, or with a handful found at a thrift shop

6. Mini Flower Pots

Source: All Things Heart & Home

A cute take on the flower pot rain chain idea, this example features an antiquing effect achieved using paint. It also features a basin at the bottom, a useful addition which helps anchor the chain and collects rainwater for eco-friendly re-use.

7. Ring Rain Chain

Source: My Home My Style

Featuring a copper basin and a chain made out of vertical tubes, this rain chain is reminiscent of those featured in early Japanese teahouse. If you are going for a sophisticated, timeless look, this style of rain chain is for you.

8. Pine Cones

In this rain chain, elements from nature are used to direct water away from your home. This chain includes large pinecones connected by small metal links. If you try a similar project, it may be a good idea to apply a weather-resistant coating to the pinecones.

9. Stacked Mini Planter Pots

Source: Old House Crazy

Water will cascade attractively from flower pot to flower pot in this rain chain featuring stacked miniature planters. The attached hooks for hanging make it easy to assemble.

10. Stacked Planters

Source: Cut Out and Keep

Featuring large hanging planters, this rain chain is a good option for areas with heavy rainfall, as the stacked style is capable of redirecting a large amount of water. The design also makes use of a planter saucer to catch overflow.

11. Stacked Metal Buckets

Source: Timeless Treasures

The re-purposed materials used in this rain chain would be totally at home in front of a cozy farmhouse or cabin. The small metal buckets direct water into a tall, weathered metal rain barrel where it can be collected and used to keep the garden lush and healthy.

12. Candle Holder

Source: Make

Another interesting way to use recycled objects in rain chains is by using candle holders, as this chain does. The variety of whimsical designs on the candle holders adds visual interest as the water is directed in ever-changing patterns.

13. Funnel and Basin Rain Chain

Source: Northline Express

Featuring delicate metal cups, thick chain links, and a gorgeous copper basin, this rain chain is a statement piece that complements any yard. The water striking the scooped surface of the basin gives a dramatic visual effect.

14. Lantern

This rain chain captures the spirit of kusari-doi by incorporating intricately decorated metal lanterns. The wooden box at the foot of the chain, filled with polished stones, is an attractive way to ensure proper drainage.

15. Rain Chain with Copper Planters

Source: Two Thirty Five Designs

With live plants growing in each copper planter, this rain chain is the ultimate combination of form and function. It brings an element of botanical beauty to your yard that is effortless to maintain.

16. Stacked Copper Buckets

Source: Randy and Meg’s Garden Paradise

The large decorative pot at the foot of this rain chain serves as an intriguing visual contrast to the sleek copper buckets that make up the chain. This interplay of metal and ornate ceramic provides timeless style.

17. Ceramic

Source: Prairie Break

This striking rain chain is made up entirely of polished ceramic discs in different colors. The water streaming over the edges is pleasing to the eye and ear, making this rain chain a great conversation piece as well as a practical tool.

Where to Buy

Monarch Pure Copper Lotus Rain Chain

One of the first rain chains that caught my eye was the Monarch copper lotus chain because it is a shade of copper that looks great against brick and other rustic colored homes. It is a full 8.5 feet in length, which means that it is made up of 20 lotus petal-shaped cups. Each petal is designed with a wide mouth that can capture a lot of rain, and the larger cups are great for heavy rain as well. If you want to see how much rainfall you are getting where you live, you can even put a copper bowl under the rain chain to catch the water as it falls. When it rains, the copper will oxidize, so the aesthetic of the lotus cups will change as time goes on.

Monarch Pure Copper Cascading Leaves Rain Chain

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If you do not like the idea of a cup filling with water, then there are options that offer more of a cascading water experience. I like this option a lot because it has copper leaf-shapes along the chain that provide a relaxing waterfall effect as it rains. This chain is also 8.5 feet long, so the rain will easily be able to reach the ground without much splashing. If it is not quite as long as you’d like, the company does have three-foot extensions that you can purchase. If you are looking for a stylish rain chain for a contemporary home, then this is an excellent option for you to consider. Since this rain chain is made from copper, it will oxidize as it is used, so eventually, the beautiful copper leaves will turn a rustic brown color that is simply breathtaking.

Marrgon Rain Chain Copper To Replace Gutter Downspouts With Decorative Chimes And Cups

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The next rain chain that we are going to look at is one that has decorative chimes that look like inverted bells. The chain is a full 8.5 feet long, and each cup is made from a beautiful copper material. Each chain contains 12 cups, and if you need your rain chain to be another size, you can easily adjust the length of the chain by adding or subtracting cups. I also love how this rain chain comes with a “v” hook that can easily connect to the hole where the downspout attaches. There is also a bit of chain below the last cup that allows you to secure the rain chain to the ground to protect it from the wind.

Decorative Iron Dragonfly Rain Chain

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One of the most unique looking rain chains that I came across when I was looking for one to add to my back porch is this decorative dragonfly rain chain. It is made from iron, which means that it is a very durable rain chain that will hold up to a lot of wind and heavy rain. It is an 8.5-foot chain that is already the shade of weathered copper, so you can have that look without waiting for it to age when you get it. The pots that are on the rain chain are designed to look like little cauldrons that have a large dragonfly on the side. The detail in the dragonfly wings is amazing, and as the water trickles over the sides of the pot, the ting on the wings of the dragonfly will almost sound like a flutter.

68” Decorative Iron Umbrella Rain Chain With Bonus Adapter Installer Piece

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The sounds of rain can be quite soothing, so I thought that this rain chain was quite an appropriate option for someone looking to harmonize their garden and their home. This rain chain has a design that resembles small, upside-down umbrellas. As each one fills with rain, the trickles of water will spill over the side. This rain chain is designed with a length that is slightly less than six feet, so if you have a high gutter, you may need to attach more than one chain together. This chain is also crafted out of an iron material that is designed to look like copper, which means that no matter how much it rains, the coloration of the unit will not change. This rain chain also comes with an installation piece so that you can attach it to your gutter with ease.

Monarch Pure Copper Cascading Butterflies on Rings Rain Chain

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If you like having butterflies in your outdoor space, then perhaps this next rain chain is the ideal option for you to consider. It is a rain chain that is 8.5 feet in length, and it is made out of copper, which means that over time the bright copper color will dull and create an artistic aged look that you will love. On the chain, two butterflies touch wings to form a cup where the water can accumulate before trickling down the chain to the ground. In total, there are 38 butterflies along this length of chain. Since these butterfly cups are on the smaller side, they are ideal for light to medium rains instead of torrential downpours. There is a hanger that is attached to the top of the chain, which makes attaching this rain chain to your gutters a breeze.

U-nitt 8-1/2 feet Rain Chain: Aluminum Square Cup Blue Embossed

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This next rain chain is the perfect option for someone who has a bright theme in their outside space. The entire unit has a bright blue coloration that will attract the eye of butterflies in your garden, and it will add some personality to your space as well. The chain has large links that carry the rain into aluminum cups that are square-shaped. This chain is 8.5 feet in length, and there are a total of 17 cups along the chain. Since this is made from aluminum, you can expect the rain to change the color of the metal, which will give it a look that is unique to your garden.

U-nitt 8-1/2 feet Pure Copper Rain Chain: XL Square Cup Sunflower Emboss

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I really love the rustic look of this rain chain. It is made from a copper material that is embossed with a beautiful sunflower on each side of the cup. When the chain is used in the rain, it will begin to tarnish, which will give the cups a unique look that will most likely change the coloration of the chain to green or a darker copper color. At 8.5 feet in length, there are 17 cups along the length of the chain. Each one is attached with a long link chain, which gives the rain a place to cascade down. For ease of installation, there is even a clip included that you can use to attach the chain to your gutter.

U-nitt 8-1/2 feet Pure Copper Rain Chain: Embossed Sunflower

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If you like sunflowers, but the design of the last rain chain that we looked at is not your style, then this rain chain from U-nitt may be a better fit for your outdoor space. It is an 8.5-foot long chain that connects 21 cups with long chain links. Each cup resembles a small flower pot, so it will look great in your garden, especially if you are attempting to create a water feature in your outdoor space. On the outside, you will see a beautiful sunflower design that wraps around the cup. If you need more or less length, the cups can easily be added to or removed from the chain. Since this rain chain is made from copper, you can expect natural oxidation to occur after it is used for a few months.

Good Directions Fish Pure Copper 8.5-Foot Rain Chain

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The next rain chain that we are going to look at is one that will beautifully accompany any outdoor water garden that you have near your home. It is made of copper, so over time, the shine will fade and create an oxidized greenish tint on the metal that will look great as the water flows over the chain. The cups have a unique fish design that can be hung with the mouth facing downward like it is jumping into the water below or with the mouth facing upward so that the fish can catch the raindrops as they fall. This is a smaller cup, so water will cascade the best when the rain is light. It is 8.5 feet in length, which makes it long enough for most homes, and it can also be purchased in a blue verde copper color if you prefer.

Decorative Butterfly Iron Rain Chain

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Another rain chain that creates a rustic feel in your outdoor space is this decorative chain that is made of iron. Each of the cups has a design that resembles a bucket, and there is a butterfly that is cut into the top of each cup. The cups on this chain are not as large as some of the cups on the other rain chains that we have looked at in this guide, but they work well with most rains. If you have a lot of flowers in your garden that attract pollinators such as butterflies, this is a great option to maintain the butterfly theme. I found this rain chain to be a bit on the short side; in fact, it is only about 4.4 feet long, but you can easily add to the length if you need.

Decorative Iron Bird Rain Chain

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The final rain chain that we are going to look at is one that features birds on the cups. The entire unit is made out of iron, so it will be able to last through gentle rains as well as storms that have more severe wind and rain with ease. I find that this is the perfect rain chain to consider if you have a water garden with a low birdbath near your home because you can easily incorporate this into your décor. This chain is only about four feet long, so if you have a gutter that is higher than that, you will need to attach two chains to extend the length.

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Popular Garden Ideas

Popular Garden Ideas

Charming and functional, rain chains are an alternative to downspouts. Unlike downspouts, however, they are more like outdoor sculptures. Place them where guests can see your new work of art.

A well-placed rain chain directs water from the roof so the ground below doesn’t erode or collect water. Place a rain chain at every corner of your house. Here are three DIY rain chain ideas to get you started.

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Clay pot rain chain

Measure the distance from your roof or gutter to the ground for chain length.

Choose a chain that will fit through the hole of the clay pots.

Tie the end of the chain in a knot. Thread the other end through a pot. Measure 1’ up the chain and tie another knot. Repeat until you have 1’ of chain left.

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Drill a pilot hole in the roof near the end of your gutter or corner of roof and hand screw an eye hook into it. Hang the chain using an S-hook.

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Rock/pebble rain chain

Measure the distance from your roof or gutter to the ground for chain length.

Cut the chain into 6″ segments.

Wrap a rock or pebble with steel framing wire, leaving a little extra on each end to connect to the chain. Apply super glue to the wrapped wire so it doesn’t come undone. Let the glue dry completely.

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Attach excess wire on each side of the rock to two separate chain segments. Repeat using all chain segments.

Cut excess wire.

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Drill a pilot hole in the roof and hand screw an eye hook into it. Hang the chain using an S-hook.

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Cookie cutter rain chain

Measure the distance from your roof or gutter to the ground for chain length.

Cut chain into 6″ segments.

Choose cookie cutters to suit your garden. They can be metal, plastic, vintage or new, spell a word, your last name or feature assorted shapes.

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Wrap top and bottom of cookie cutter with two pieces of wire, leaving a little extra on each end to connect to the chain.

Attach excess wire on each end of the cookie cutter to two separate chain segments.

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Repeat using all chain segments. Cut excess wire.

Drill a pilot hole in the roof and hand screw an eye hook into it. Hang chain using an S-hook.

) ) )Introduction

Charming and functional, rain chains are an alternative to downspouts. Unlike downspouts, however, they are more like outdoor sculptures. Place them where guests can see your new work of art.

A well-placed rain chain directs water from the roof so the ground below doesn’t erode or collect water. Place a rain chain at every corner of your house. Here are three DIY rain chain ideas to get you started.

Step 1

Clay pot rain chain

Measure the distance from your roof or gutter to the ground for chain length.

Choose a chain that will fit through the hole of the clay pots.

Tie the end of the chain in a knot. Thread the other end through a pot. Measure 1’ up the chain and tie another knot. Repeat until you have 1’ of chain left.

Step 2

Drill a pilot hole in the roof near the end of your gutter or corner of roof and hand screw an eye hook into it. Hang the chain using an S-hook.

Step 3

Rock/pebble rain chain

Measure the distance from your roof or gutter to the ground for chain length.

Cut the chain into 6″ segments.

Wrap a rock or pebble with steel framing wire, leaving a little extra on each end to connect to the chain. Apply super glue to the wrapped wire so it doesn’t come undone. Let the glue dry completely.

Step 4

Attach excess wire on each side of the rock to two separate chain segments. Repeat using all chain segments.

Cut excess wire.

Step 5

Drill a pilot hole in the roof and hand screw an eye hook into it. Hang the chain using an S-hook.

Step 6

Cookie cutter rain chain

Measure the distance from your roof or gutter to the ground for chain length.

Cut chain into 6″ segments.

Choose cookie cutters to suit your garden. They can be metal, plastic, vintage or new, spell a word, your last name or feature assorted shapes.

Step 7

Wrap top and bottom of cookie cutter with two pieces of wire, leaving a little extra on each end to connect to the chain.

Attach excess wire on each end of the cookie cutter to two separate chain segments.

Step 8

Repeat using all chain segments. Cut excess wire.

Drill a pilot hole in the roof and hand screw an eye hook into it. Hang chain using an S-hook.

Red Bark Design’s pergola with rain chains was a finalist for Best Outbuilding in the 2014 Gardenista Considered Design Awards.

Above: Red Bark Design’s rain chains in Tucson funneled water into a gutter system that directs rainwater toward nearby garden plants.

Are rain chains right for my house?

A general rule of thumb is that a roof needs a three-foot eave to funnel water effectively to a rain chain. If you live in an area with high winds or heavy rainfall, a rain chain may not be be able to funnel all the water away from the foundation of your house; consider a perimeter French drain to add drainage.

What fittings and hardware do rain chains require?

Above: If you are planning a DIY rain chain installation project, you can use simple components such as (clockwise, from upper right) a Polished Copper Leader ($64.99 from Architectural Depot); cast aluminum Garden Stakes ($24.99 each from Rain Chains in a Nutshell); a Copper Basin Bowl to catch water ($38.95 from Amazon); Cast Copper Rain Chain Links ($32 per linear foot from Rain Chains in a Nutshell), and a Copper Rain Chain Installation Kit With Cross Bar Debris Blocker ($20.95 from Monarch Rain Chains).

How much do rain chains cost?

Above: A large diameter Toh L Rain Chain made of stainless steel is designed for oversize roofs, with a “draining capacity that exceeds conventional types by five times,” notes Japan-based manufacturer SEO. Prices range from $1,000 to $1,330, depending on length.

Compared to a traditional gutter-and-downspout system which can cost as much as $32 per linear foot for installation (for copper), rain chains can be easy on the budget. At the low end, a 10-foot metal Nine-Gauge Accessory Chain is $44.46 from Home Depot. An 8.5-foot length of decorative copper Kanji Cups Rain Chain with 13 cups is $269.99 from Rain Chains in a Nutshell.

Rain Chains Recap

Pros:

  • Less expensive than gutters.
  • Aesthetically pleasing with a wide range of architectural styles.
  • The sound of running water is a pleasant background noise in a garden.

Cons:

  • Less sturdy than traditional metal downspouts.
  • Handle less capacity than a downspout.
  • Less effective in areas with high winds.
  • Water can freeze on the chains in winter, creating a heavy weight on eaves.

Trying to direct the flow of water away from your house or into the garden? See our Hardscape 101 design guides, especially Exteriors & Facades 101: A Design Guide. And don’t miss our recent posts:

  • Hardscaping 101: Rain Gutters.
  • 10 Dramatic Drainage Ideas to Steal.
  • 10 Easy Pieces: Rain Barrels.

Good design is in the details, as they say, and great architectural design details are often site-specific, responding to local contexts and regional conditions. In places like the Pacific Northwest where rain is a defining factor of everyday life, designing for drainage is naturally essential but it also represents an opportunity to get creative. And one way to do that is with a kind of drain pipe alternative called a “rain chain.”

Rain chain in winter, image by contraption (CC BY 2.0)

Rain chains have a long history in Japan and have made their way around the world over time — essentially, they help guide water down off the sides of buildings without the use of pipes. In some places, chains are cheaper or more easily obtained than modern machined downspouts. More sophisticated versions can feature sets of cups linked vertically, turning drainage into a visual and auditory experience while also slowing water down (to help reduce erosion below).

Train chains have become increasingly popular as a reaction against downspouts, which 99pi fan Clifton Stone of Bend, Oregon says “are ugly and are therefore routed inward under eaves to run down an outer wall.” In contrast, “rain chains look great so they head straight down from the eaves, far out from the house.” In short: rather than hide the process (poorly) of draining rain, chains highlight it.

“Perhaps the most difficult part of rain chain ownership, if there is one, is settling on a design,” writes Matt Hickman of MNN. “At their most simple, rain chains consist of a strand of traditional chains or large loops but can also incorporate a touch of whimsy with cups/funnels in the shape of things like watering cans, flowers and umbrellas. And in addition to copper, you can find rain chains made from materials like stainless steel or bamboo.” It all depends on the desired look.

Typical angular house facade interrupted by bent and curved downspouts for drainage

In a way, it’s not really a question of showing or concealing drainage — conventional downspouts are visible as well, even if designed to blend in through material or color choices. Instead, it comes down to a question of what the process is going to look like. Functionally, downspout systems necessitate strange contortions, bending back in from roof-edge gutters to run down the sides of buildings, then jutting back out again to get water away from those same structures. In the end, they can wind up looking more prominent than hidden — for better or worse, they are the architectural equivalent of suit piping.

Dresden Kunsthof Passage by Roland Hauck (CC BY 2.0)

Rain chains are not the only way to mix things up on facades — other clever drainage solutions include an “instrument” (above) on the face of a building in Dresden, which plays “music” when it rains. In rain-heavy places like Seattle, some systems use pipes as planters (below), watering plants with rainwater as it makes its way down buildings.

Drainage planters near Pike Place Market in Seattle, image by Taryn Mazza

Whatever the vertical system, there is also the question of what to do with rain once it reaches the ground. Some rain chains (or downspouts) hook into catchment systems for reclamation purposes. In other cases, water is led to rain gardens, which serve a variety of functions — these can improve water quality by filtering runoff, help with flood control, encourage biodiversity and tie buildings into their environments. A number of cities around the world have programs specifically designed to encourage rain garden development for these reasons.

One of several stylized downspouts on buildings in Anacortes, Washington byJoe Mabel(CC BY-SA 3.0)

Of course, none of these basic systems are new. The Harappan civilization used drains long before the Romans further innovated on plumbing. The Tower of London sported what may have been Britain’s first downspout as early as the 1200s, designed to help keep exterior walls clean. Early American settlers made gutters from sets of boarders connected to form a ‘V’ shape, replaced by cast iron in the 1800s then steel in the early 1900s (followed by plastic and aluminum).

Get you a handrail that can do both pic.twitter.com/5P30AuHscw

— David Huber (@davidhuber_) May 11, 2017

Globalization, meanwhile, has made options like the Japanese rain chain more available around the world. The internet has also made it possible to find unique one-off solutions, like this handrail downspout.

If there is a larger takeaway here perhaps it is about paths of least resistance, with regards to both the actual flow of water and design decisions. On the one hand, it is easy to blindly follow regional precedents and traditions with long histories (or grab whatever is handy at the hardware store). On the other hand, sometimes it makes sense to take a step back and decide consciously how to reveal (or conceal) a natural process. For those seeking more inspiration, here are some more neat drainage ideas. (Special thanks to Doug Mack)

Is A Rain Chain Right for Your Home?

Rains have finally come to Northern California, leading to widespread jubilation among residents who were starting to worry about drought, but along with rain comes a perennial winter issue: managing gutters and downspouts. For households who didn’t plan ahead, clogs, misaligned downspouts, and other problems are making themselves apparent, requiring hasty fixes to get ahead of the weather before water ends up where it shouldn’t.

Other homeowners are cozy inside by the toasty fire listening to the sound of the rain on their snug San Francisco roofs. Some are enjoying a little something extra: the unique sound of rain rushing down the rain chains they’ve used to replace their downspouts.

Types of Rain Chains

Used in Japan for centuries, rain chains have started to catch on in the United States as an attractive and fun downspout alternative. Some feature actual chains, while others may use different shapes like cups or bells which ring as the rain travels down them and into a graveled catchment, there to drain into an appropriate area of the yard. Rain chains add a lot of curb appeal to the house and sound lovely, but if you’re considering installing one, make sure you know what you’re doing.

Beware an Incorrectly Installed Rain Chain

As with any downspout, an improperly installed rain chain can lead to problems. Poor drainage can lead to pooling water around the foundation of the house, which contributes to high humidity, mold, and mildew. Too much water can even start to crack and damage the foundation directly, in addition to promoting the high moisture levels insects tend to like. Meanwhile, bad drainage in the yard can create soggy, muddy spots, and if water is misdirected, it may upset a neighbor by flooding her property.

Rain Chains vs Downspouts

Here are some disadvantages of rain chains: they’re less sturdy, and less high-capacity, than traditional downspouts. If you live somewhere with heavy weather and high winds, you’ll need to install backup downspouts to handle your rainfall because rain chains alone won’t be able to do the job. You also need an effective collection system, which might be a water feature like a temporary water garden, a barrel, or a French drain that routes the water to another location. It’s critical to divert water away from the house to prevent damage.

Advantages of Rain Chains

The obvious advantage, of course, is that rain chains are much more attractive than most downspouts. They come in a variety of styles and finishes, including copper, which can develop a patina over time to create a beautifully weathered look. Some also produce beautiful musical sounds, which can be a pleasant counterpoint to the rain.

DIY Rain Chains

DIY rain chain projects are another option, offering even more flexibility. For example, this project uses a chain paired with terracotta pots, and a large catchment of terracotta filled with small stones. In the dry season, the rain chain adds visual interest, and when it rains, it creates a beautiful cascading water feature.

Install a Rain Chain

Installing rain chains is quite easy, although if you’re not comfortable working on your roof, you may want to hire a handyman for help. As long as you’re up around the gutters, it’s a good time to inspect them, clear debris, and replace any broken or damaged sections. Consider anchoring the chain to keep it in place if you’re worried about high winds, and remember to inspect it regularly along with your gutters for signs of issues that might interfere with its efficiency.

Use Rain Chains Effectively

If you live in a high wind area, you may not be able to use rain chains. Your home also needs to have an overhang of at least three feet to allow rain chains to work most effectively, and remember that you will need a drainage system below the chain, whether it’s a buried drain, a French drain, a water feature, or a large barrel for rainwater reclamation. With these considerations in mind, you can investigate your rain chain options, and find the one that’s right for you.

Katie Marks writes for Networx.com.

Updated December 17, 2017.

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Make Your Own DIY Rain Chains

Do you know what a rain chain is? They are an attractive alternative to those boring downspouts connected to our home’s gutters. Downspouts are incredibly beneficial since they help direct the draining of water during a rain storm. But, let’s be frank, unless they are gorgeous copper round downspouts, they don’t look great. But, did you know there’s a more beautiful solution? Ladies and gentlemen, be prepared to be wowed.

What do you think about those pretty rain chains instead of a downspout? Love them? What if I told you it is possible to make your own rain chains using various materials that you may have lying around the house.

Here are 21 awesome DIY Rain Chains you can make!

Make a beautiful copper rain chain with leaf shaped pieces cut from thin sheet metal.

Create this tranquil and pretty outdoor water feature using a stock tank and rain chains.

Make this copper ring DIY Rain Chain using copper tubing.

Use mini terracotta pots to create this fun DIY Ombre Rain Chain.

Add some whimsy to your yard with this DIY Cookie Cutter Rain Chain.

Use copper tubing and stones to make this beautiful, natural rain chain.

Turn these cute galvanized buckets into a DIY Bucket Rain Chain.

If your budget is tight, consider making this DIY Plastic Cup Rain Chain.

Learn how to make this stunning DIY Glass and Copper Rain Chain.

Make this DIY Funnel Rain Chain using aluminum funnels and chain.

Repurpose old silverware by bending it and creating this funky DIY Silverware Rain Chain.

Do you love succulents? Add more to your life by making a DIY Copper Rain Chain Succulent Planter.

Wire vintage spoons together to make this DIY Bent Spoon Homemade Rain Chain.

Create a fun and bright rain chain for your garden using dollar store watering cans.

Have kids help you show your love for the environment by creating this DIY Reused Plastic Yogurt Cup Rain Chain.

Create a Key Rain Chain with a large collection of old keys.

Use old shower hooks to create this DIY Hook Rain Chain.

Have extra zip ties lying around the house? Create this amazing Neon Zip Tie Rain Chain.

Add whimsy to your yard by creating this DIY Tart Tin Rain Chain with colorful glass beads.

Drill through polished stone to create this amazing DIY Polished Stone Rain Chain.

Finally, here’s another Wire Wrapped Rock Rain Chain that would be gorgeous and easy to make.

I hope you loved this collection of ideas to make your own Rain Chain! Do you have other ideas for creating a beautiful rain chain for your home or garden? I’d love to hear it! Let me know your thoughts in the comments.

If you liked this roundup of ideas, please share this image on Pinterest to get the word out!

Hi, I’m Sheri from Hazel + Gold Designs. Here are a few fun stats about me: I like love chocolate and peanut butter (together of course.) If you like stats, I have been crocheting for about 16 years, crafting for 20, and woodworking for about 4 years. I found a passion in making and being creative and began documenting my projects online at Hazel + Gold Designs.

When not working on projects, I enjoy spending time with my husband, four children, perfect dog, and ornery cat. You can find me on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter.

Read all of Sheri’s tutorials.

~Find more of Sheri’s projects here ~

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