Rain chains are often chosen as a viable alternative to the traditional downspout because, in addition to their functional purpose, they have the added advantage of being pleasing to the eye. Using rain chains as a decorative element adds value to your home by increasing curb appeal and giving your landscaping a unique focal point.
You can further increase the decorative value of a rain chain by creatively incorporating it into your landscape design. When you channel the runoff into an ornamental basin, pond or rain barrel, you enhance the whimsical element of the rain chain. Rain chains can also help you achieve a sustainable landscape design. When rain chains are paired with a rain barrel, the water collected and stored in the barrel can later be used to water the garden or areas of the lawn.
While downspouts are typically designed to blend with the overall appearance of a home, rain chains are specifically chosen to stand out and be noticed. The beauty of a rain chain is derived from the type of metal used in combination with its shape and style. Popular themed rain chains include flowers, butterflies and birds. Rain chains are commonly made of copper, brass, aluminum and steel.
If you are using a rain chain as part of a decorative pool or rock garden, select a cup or container-type of rain chain. Link chains guide the water downward, but do tend to splash more. Cup or container style rain chains collect the water first, before draining it into the cup below, funneling more water into a pool, basin or rock feature than a simple link chain.