Water-Saving Rain Barrels

Water: that precious resource, covering three-quarters of our planet.  It’s easy to take it for granted, but now and then we’re reminded of how much we all depend on it – whether by a well that is failing to supply our homes with an adequate supply or by being confronted with the heartbreaking ecological damage caused by a corporate disaster.

Spring and summer gardening often brings a spike to our water usage as we tend to the needs of our gardens and lawns. One easy solution for increasing water conservation while caring for our yards is the use of rain barrels.

By directing your gutters and downspouts into rain barrels, gallons upon gallons of water can be collected from the large amount of rain that pelts your roof, and stored to meet your gardening and non-drinking needs. Once your rain barrel is full, excess water is diverted away from your foundation if you installed overflow hose. Depending on the size of your rain barrel, you can collect less than 50 gallons or well over 100. Rain barrels can also be connected and used for outbuildings, in addition to your house, increasing the amount of water collected.

Do not collect rainwater for drinking without finding out if it’s legal to do so in your area. If you are zoned for drinking collected rainwater, you must be sure to cover and protect your system in order to remove contaminants

Varying designs are featured at a number of gardening supply stores, with a wider array available online. Models with a tap make it easy to access the water. Several online resources are listed below. If you’re a DIY’er, kits are available from sites such as kentuckybarrels.com.

Should you decide to ramp up your collection of rainwater, the American Rainwater Catchment Systems Association, arcsa.org, can provide information on creating a more elaborate catchment system.

Resources:
rainsaverusa.com
gardeners.com
composters.com
simplyrainbarrels.com
watersavers.com

113 comments

Jo Recovering
Jo S.about a year ago

Thank Terri.

Dawid P.
Dawid P.4 years ago

In my garden we used this kind of stuff from 8-10 years it's great:) especially when in summer droughts happen

Andre V.
Andre V.4 years ago

millions of gallons of water and energy are being saved daily by people using Oxygenics the most powerful low flow , high pressure , water and energy saving shower head on the market

Lydia S.
Lydia W.5 years ago

I love having a rain barrel ! We will be adding at least one more this summer.

Carole L.
Carole L.5 years ago

I hope to be able to set some up soon in my new home.

Delia F.
Past Member 5 years ago

Interesante, pero yo vivo en un apartamento y no puedo hacerlo

Elaine Silva
Elaine Silva5 years ago

Excelent article! I'll do it in my new house.

Marija Keselj
Past Member 5 years ago

This is great... :)))

Debra Van Way
Debra Van Way5 years ago

Got my rain barrel-one overnight rain and it is full (50 gallons). More than enough water for my flowerbeds. Looking at getting a second one now for my raised garden bed and raspberry plants.

Evan R.
Past Member 5 years ago

everyone should do this and they will see how big of a difference this will make especially in rainy areas like the northwest, whenever it rains i put buckets out where the water is puring down the hardest whenever i can