Rain Barrel Project

Rain Barrel Project

Installing a rain barrel next to your home is a simple, low-cost way to conserve water and save money.

What is a rain barrel?

A rain barrel is a system that collects and stores rainwater from a roof that would otherwise be lost to runoff and diverted to culverts and streams. A rain barrel is usually composed of a 40-55 gallon drum, a vinyl hose, PVC couplings, and a screen grate to keep debris and insects out. A rain barrel can be installed under any residential gutter down spout. Barrels are available at all local hardware stores and can be delivered. They come in a variety of colors, shapes, sizes and can include lids and attached hoses. They range in cost from $50 – $150.

Why install a rain barrel?

Nationwide, landscape irrigation is estimated to account for nearly one-third of all residential water use, totaling nearly 9 billion gallons per day. A rain barrel collects water and stores it for when it is needed to water plants, wash cars or any other non-potable water use. A rain barrel will save most homeowners about 1,300 gallons of water during the peak summer months. Saving water not only helps protect the environment by reducing storm water run-off, it saves homeowners money and decreases demands on the Town’s single water source.

How can rainwater be used?

Consider these ideas for your mineral-rich, chlorine-free rainwater:

  • Attach a hose to the bottom spigot and top overflow valve and water landscaped areas.
  • Fill a bucket of watering can to hand-water plants in your garden and indoor plants.
  • Use the rainwater to wash cars and bicycles. Want more information? Rain barrels can be purchased online or you can even DIY your own “water harvesting system.” Lowe’s Hardware’s website has a great “How to Buy, Install and Use A Rain Barrel” page to get you started.

View a printable version of this information here.