How to Use a Rain Chain Without Having Gutters

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Divert rainwater without gutters or downspouts with a rain chain.

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.


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.

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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.

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