How to Plan a Rainwater Collection System

What You'll Need
Rain Barrel
Wire Mesh
Valve and Taps - These may be included with the rain barrel
Overflow valve (optional)
Extra Guttering and Down-piping

Collecting rainwater is a great way to get some water for free. Thanks to these rainwater collection systems you can water your plants without wasting tap-water. Everyone is looking for a way to protect the environment and to stop wasting energy. Wasting water is a huge waste of energy which is why we all need to be more responsible.

Constructing your own home rain water collection system is actually much easier than you might imagine. As long as you have the right tools and materials you should be able to easily make your own water collection system.

Step 1 - Calculate Amount of Water from Your Roof

The first thing that you need to do is work out how much rain your roof will catch every year. This is actually much easier than you might imagine. An inch of rain will create 600 gallons of water a year. Find out how much rain falls in your area and multiply this by 600. Then you just need to take this figure and multiply it by the size of roof you have. This will tell you how many gallons of water you could save. Of course there is no reason why you have to try and save all of this water.

Step 2 - Choose a Barrel

The next thing that you need to do is to spend time choosing the right barrel that you want to install. There are many different barrels which are suitable for different purposes. You firstly need to think about what you actually want to use the water for. You will then be able to choose the right types of barrel for your needs.

If your barrel doesn't already have a tap fitted to it then you will need to buy one and then fit it. This isn't difficult and most of the barrels already come with a tap fitted.

Most homes already have guttering with downpipes from the roof. This means that fitting a water butt is just the matter of cutting and inserting the water barrel.

Step 3 - Additional Options

You need to cover the barrel by using wire mesh or a lid which is included with the barrel. This covering will prevent animals or children from getting into the water. It will also prevent debris from falling inside of the water and will make the water more usable.

You might also need to consider using additional options including an overflow valve. If you don't plan on using the water very often then an overflow valve will redirect the water down the drains without flooding anywhere or causing damage.

Step 4 - Connection

All that you need to do is cut the down pipe and then connect it to your water barrel. Then connect up the overflow valve if required and then you're good to go. You just need to wait for it to rain and take a look at it. When it rains the barrel will be filled with water.

This water can then be used to water your plants and garden without causing any damage to the environment.