DIY Rain Barrel
BLACK+DECKER B+D Contributor 122 Projects
Practically everything around your house that requires water loves the natural goodness that’s provided with soft rainwater. With a simple rain barrel, you can collect rainwater to irrigate your garden or lawn, wash your car, or top off swimming pools and hot tubs. Collecting rainwater runoff in rain barrels can save thousands of gallons of tap water each year. A typical 40 × 40-ft. roof is capable of collecting 1,000 gallons of water from only one inch of rain. A simple rain barrel system that limits collected water to outdoor (nonpotable) use, like the rain barrels described on the following pages, can have a big impact on the self-sufficiency of your home, helping you save on utility expenses and reduce the energy used to process and purify water for your lawn and garden. Some communities now offer subsidies for rain barrel use, offering free or reduced-price barrels and downspout connection kits. Check with your local water authority for more information. Get smart with your water usage, and take advantage of the abundant supply from above.