How to Use a Rain Chain Without Having Gutters

Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.

Things You'll Need

  • Drill

  • Large eyehook

  • Ladder

  • Copper bucket with removable handle

  • Metal rod no longer than the bucket base

  • S hook

  • Rain chain

  • Splash board

  • Stone jar


You can pre-test your gutterless rain chain to be sure it is positioned properly. Spray a garden hose up to your rooftop in the general area of the crease. Let the water run down into your rain chain for about 10 minutes. Adjust your bucket position if necessary.

Divert rainwater without gutters or downspouts with a rain chain.
See More Photos

Most sloping roofs can accommodate a rain chain even without a gutter. Since roof slopes will vary from home to home, so will the trajectory of the water that streams from a roof through a crevice or crease during a storm. Study your roof and how it expels rain water before you install your gutterless rain chain. During a rain event, test your design by moving the bucket around under the streaming water until you find the position you want the bucket to occupy.


Video of the Day

Step 1

Select a corner of your roof that sheds rainwater in a vertical stream. This is typically at a sloped corner or a crease where two parts of the house meet. Observe your home during a rain event to find the best location candidate.

Step 2

Drill a hole in the bottom of the bucket. Make the hole wide enough to enable you to dangle a two-inch S-hook through it.


Step 3

Screw the eyehook into the soffit under the roof crease where you'll hang your rain chain. Position the eyehook about an inch from the edge of the soffit. This will allow most of the bucket mouth to be open to the streaming rain.

Step 4

Remove the handle from the bucket. Slip the handle through the open eye of the eyehook. Attach the bucket to the handle.


Step 5

Lay the metal rod across the bottom of the bucket. Attach the S-hook to the metal rod. Position the rod and hook so that the S-hook dangles through the hole in the bucket.

Step 6

Attach the rain chain to the S-hook. Let the chain dangle down to the top of a stone jar. Place a splash board under the jar with the sloping side of the splash board facing away from your home or structure.