Sexy Rainwater Downspouts Add Jewel-Like Detail To Home Exterior

, by Laura Ikeji

Collecting rainwater from your roof doesn't have to be dull, pedestrian work. That's the message you get from these unusual downspout systems. Instead hiding water inside cheap PVC gutters, these homeowners can watch the flow as it travels all the way down to the waiting rainwater barrel cistern.

The image shown is from a home in Wyoming, but it only scratches the surface of what's possible with creative water collection systems. Combine these cosmetic effects with good building science, such as:

* Rainwater Diverter (which dumps the first few gallons of water to get rid of leaves, soot and other buildup.

* Natural Sand Filtration. Run the rainfall through a few inches of sand, a great natural purifier, before it gets to your storage cistern. Sand typically lasts up to 10 years before it will need replacement.

* Complete Rainwater Filtration. Companies such as RMS (mid slideshow) offer relatively affordable (about $6000 installed for a whole-house system) rainwater storage and filtration systems.

Video about rainwater systems here.

Images Courtesy of Prairiebreak here.

Here are a few other neat downspout ideas: