Are Rain Chains Bad For Foundation Walls?

There is no denying that rain chains are aesthetic, popular, and simple to maintain. However, hanging them on the gutter collar adds weight as the chains get heavier with rainwater. Now the question is: are rain chains bad for foundation walls?

Rain chains are bad for foundation walls only if there are issues, such as poor installation, poor drainage system, water leakage, etc. The weight of the rain chain can put stress on the gutter system and end up causing tears or cracks.

Just because rain chains often do damage does not mean it is always bad. Rain chain’s effective performance made it famous. If you install and take care of it properly, you can dodge such unexpected situations.

Are Rain Chains Bad For Foundation Walls?

Rain chains are not exactly a new invention. Japanese Buddhist temples started using them centuries ago. But as it is new to many people now, they worry if these hanging structures will cause any damage to their foundations.

Rain chains are not bad for foundation walls, per se, but they can create issues if you are not careful. When you install a rain chain, it remains very close to your house’s foundation. And as it is a source of an open water drainage system, rainwater will splash around the house.

If you install the rain chain incorrectly, it will keep clogging the drain and spreading mold as the weather changes. As a result, it will slowly start damaging the foundation walls.

But how do you avoid this situation? The solution is to keep a distance between the wall and the rain chain. You need to make sure the rain chain is draining water without any interruption. Without a proper drainage system, it will end up flooding your property.

Pros And Cons Of Rain Chains

Yes, rain chains are beautiful, stylish, and look better than downspouts. However, it also comes with a few issues. Let’s take a look at some pros and cons of


  • Rain chains look stunning
  • They come in various shapes and designs.
  • Easy to install and uninstall.
  • They are low-maintenance ornaments.
  • You can adjust the length.
  • Create a mesmerizing sound when it rains.
  • Do not get a clogging issue.
  • They are less expensive than downspouts.


  • Chains are less sturdy than metal downspouts.
  • They splash a lot during heavy rain.
  • Water freezes on the chain in the winter season.
  • Can lead to structural damage.

Lets’ check a video on rain chain

Quick Tips About Rain Chains

If you are a newbie when it comes to getting a rain chain and installing it, things will seem a bit challenging to you. But don’t worry about messing everything up. Here are some quick tips to make sure everything goes well.

  • Aluminum rain chains are available in white and black powder coating, and they oxidize after a few years. And you will notice powdery deposits on the chain.
  • Copper materials are shiny and eye-catching. They also start oxidizing over time. However, instead of damaging the appearance, the rain chain starts looking even better.
  • Is the 8.5 foot rain chain too long? You can use a set of pliers to remove the excess parts.
  • Always measure your gutter before purchasing a rain chain. If the gutter appears too large, you can buy a gutter adapter to reduce the size of its opening.
  • Rain chains have a loose and swaying structure. So it is natural for the chain to move a lot when a heavy wind blows.

It is better to anchor the bottom of the rain chain to prevent sway. I would say barrels look great for anchoring the chain’s base. You can even use the rainwater to water your plants.

  • Most importantly, always install the rain chains a few inches away from your house’s wall or structures. Otherwise, the splashing can make the surroundings dirty. It can also damage the rain chain.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Why Should I Have A Rain Chain?

You can purchase a rain chain if you want something more aesthetic to drain rainwater from the roof. Rain chains require less maintenance and cost less than traditional downspouts.

Q. How Much Do Rain Chains Cost?

Rain chains’ price depends on factors like design, style, material, and more. The price range is between $25-$350 or higher.

There are additional costs if you need to add a gutter or gutter clip, basin and hire people to do the job. It is better to be prepared to spend a little more than your budget.

Q. How To Maintain A Rain Chain?

You don’t need to spend a lot of time cleaning and maintaining the rain chains. Rain chains hardly go through clogging issues.

And even if they do, you can use a stick or screw head to poke the gutter to unclog it. Inspect the chain and gutter twice a year to ensure the roof or the beam isn’t suffering any damage.

Q. Can I Install A Rain Chain Without A Gutter?

Yes, you can install a rain chain even if you don’t have a gutter. In that case, you need to select a place that drains rainwater vertically. Add a bucket with a drilled hole in it to insert a hook.

Then hang the bucket on the roof using the hook. This bucket will act as a gutter for you to hang the rain chain.

Q. Does My Rain Chain Need Anchoring?

You can go on fine without anchoring the rain chain. But if you live in an area that has strong wind, I suggest anchoring the rain chain. It will prevent too much sway as the wind blows and damage anything.

Final Words

Rain chains are the type of ornaments anyone would love to have on their yard.  However, the concept of rain chains is still new to many homeowners. But once you “meet” this much-talked ornament, you will want to have more than one.

Then comes the most concerning question: are rain chains bad for foundation walls? But now you know that rain chains don’t always damage the foundation. Follow the installation and maintenance guidelines properly to ensure a better drainage system for your house on rainy days.