How well do rain chains work?

January 05, 2023

Rain Chains set up on homes

Rain chains do a great job of draining rainwater when set up properly!

The big factors that affect rain chain drainage are how well the chain is designed, how it's attached to the gutter, how the rain chain is anchored to the ground, and of course the climate the home is located in. Let’s take a look at the major factors that make rain chains function better or worse and how you can use them to pick out your rain chain!

Proper Rain Chain Attachment

Rain chains function their best when rainwater flows onto them properly. This is best done with the use of an installation kit. These rain chain accessories allow rain water to be channeled down on to the rain chain rather than flowing out of the hole in your gutter and missing the rain chain entirely. We recommend using an exterior caulk to secure the installation kit in the gutter. It's also important to note that the installation kit tube needs to be hanging straight out of the gutter. If it's angled the water could miss the rain chain.

Rain Chain Waterflow Index

Not all rain chains handle rainwater the same, this is very important to pay attention to, especially if you live in a climate that receives a lot of rainfall. The waterflow index was created to make it simple to determine how well a rain chain functions. Cup style rain chains generally have a higher waterflow index than link style rain chains. This is because the cups are capable of handling and containing more water. The majority of our cup style rain chains are designed with a cup to cup assembly (without a chain), improving waterflow and reducing splashing.

Rain Chain Drainage

One thing that's often overlooked is drainage away from the rain chain. The same drainage concepts that apply to a traditional downspout, also apply to a rain chain. Once rain water reaches the bottom of your rain chain it will need somewhere to go, otherwise it could run back to the foundation of your home and cause damage. This is prevented by properly grading your landscaping so water will run away from your home once it reaches the ground. Utilizing a basin, dish, or a stake with some river rocks to prevent erosion are all good ideas as well.