Are Rainhandlers Better than Gutters?

A rainhandler is a possible alternative to gutters. But are they better than gutters?

Gutters are more effective at handling heavy rainfall than rainhandlers. They will protect your home better from water damage.

Rainhandlers are installed along your eaves (or roofline) and break up the flow of water off of your roof into smaller droplets. They work differently than normal gutters, which channel the water into a downspout and away from your home.

Rainhandlers will lower the impact of the rainwater when it falls onto your landscaping, doing less damage to the area surrounding your home.

We’ll go into more details about what a rainhandler is and how they are different than gutters.

Unfortunately, Rainhandlers went out of business and they are no longer available for purchase. Instead, check out these other gutter alternatives.

What’s a Rainhandler?

A rainhandler is water handling system that is attached to your eaves (the eaves are the section of your roof that overhang your home).

Rainhandlers are made up of strips of metal that will disperse the water falling off your roof into a 3 foot area.

They can help prevent soil erosion and landscaping damage. Rainhandlers are commonly used on smaller structures, such as sheds or smaller homes.

However, they are not recommended for most homeowners. Over a long enough time, the water that falls from the rainhandlers can damage your foundation, siding, and more.

That’s why gutters are recommended instead. Gutters will channel water into downspouts instead of directly onto the ground. The water is then directed away from your home and foundation.

This makes gutters a better option for the longevity of your home.

Gutters will also give you more area around your home that will stay dry, so your can go outside during rainfall and not worry about water dripping if you are standing under your eaves.

Rainhandlers vs Gutters: The Big Differences

RainhandlersGutters
CheaperMore expensive
Disperse rainfallChannel water away from home
Less effective at protecting homeProtects home and foundation better
Easier to DIYHarder to DIY

When looking at the biggest differences between gutters and rainhandlers, it mainly comes down to how effective they are.

And gutters win on almost all accounts.

Gutters will protect your home better from water damage. They will escort and direct water away from your home. Rainhandlers will still allow water to fall near your foundation and pool up in the area.

So if you have an underground basement, your chances of it flooding will increase with rainhandlers instead of gutters.

At the end of the day, standard 5-inch K-style seamless gutters are the best option. They are affordable, reliable, and low-maintenance when compared to other options. It makes sense why they are the industry standard.

Are Rainhandlers Cheaper than Gutters?

At face value, rainhandlers are cheaper than gutters. Especially if you plan on DIYing. Part of the reason they are cheaper is that they don’t require downspouts.

Rainhandlers are attached to the fascia board on the eaves – and then you are done. No downspouts, splash guards, or gusher guards are needed.

For this reason, installation is much simpler and usually cheaper.

If you don’t plan on DIYing, and want to hire a contractor, you may find that installing rainhandlers is more expensive.

That’s because most contractors are used to installing normal gutters and won’t want to install rainhandlers. It messes with their work flow and their team will need to be trained.

Plus they already have the tools and supplies needed for normal gutters.

Because of this, you may find that rainhandlers are more expensive to install (unless you DIY them yourself).

Do Rainhandlers Really Work?

Rainhandlers do work, most of the time.

They break up the water falling off of your roof into droplets that get distributed over a 2-3 foot area.

However, sometimes they don’t work correctly.

If you experience heavy winds while it rains, the water running off of your roof may overshoot the rainhandlers. This can lead to soil erosion around your home.

Also, in the valleys of your roof, you may also experience overshooting. The valleys refer to the areas where two parts of your roof meet, creating a small valley that gets extra waterflow.

This extra waterflow may be too much for your rainhandlers to handle, leading to overshooting.

With gutters, this is not a problem in most cases, because you can install a gusher guard (or splash guard) to prevent overshooting.

Rainhandlers also make it harder to collect water from rainfall. The dispersed water is much harder to collect than water that falls down a downspout.

Other Gutter Alternatives

If you don’t like the look of gutters, there are other gutter and downspout alternatives.

Drip Path

A common alternative is a drip path or French drain.

Instead of gutters or rainhandlers installed on the eaves, the drip path is put into the ground where the water will fall.

The drip path consists of irrigation rocks to break up the water fall with an underground drainage pipe underneath to move the water away from your home.

On top of the irrigation path, many homeowners like to install pavers or decorative rock paths that they can walk on.

The drip path is great way to handle the water runoff from your roof and protect your landscaping and home from water damage.

Instead of muddy pockets of grass and water, now you have a clean drip path to walk on instead.

Rain Chains

Rain chains are a more decorative way to handle rainfall. While they are not a complete gutter alternative, they can replace your ugly downspouts.

Simply remove your downspout and put a rain chain there instead. As the water falls off of your gutter and into the rain drain, the water will stick to the chain and fall to the ground.

It is quite fascinating watching a rain chain work and they look much better than a downspout sticking into your yard.

There are so many different styles of rain chains to choose from.

Keep in mind, they don’t work quite as well as downspouts. You’ll notice some water will splash away from the chain, which can lead to issues in some cases.

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