Rain water harvesting can be done inexpensively:

I made this rain harvester for about 3 to 5 cents a gallon (not including the cost of the barrels which can be FREE).

I avoided the normal cost of a rainwater harvester which usually includes the supplies needed for each barrel: spigots ($4), outlet flanges ($5), overflow flanges ($5), pipe etc. etc. Now, I'm all for saving rain, but I'd like to save some money while I'm at it! :-)

So, I figured out how to connect my barrels together for 3 to 5 cents per gallon!
I currently have 2400 gallons of capacity, and have spent about $120.These pages (see links on right) will show you how.



Rain Barrel Best Deal

Here is the cheapest 55 gallon barrel currently available online:
"baytech containers $49+free shipping" Feb 25th.
Post a comment if you find one cheaper and I'll update the above.

24 comments:

Barry said...

rain barrel kits can be found at www.aquabarrel.com

Lisa said...

I like your setup!

I also wrote a post about rainbarrels.

http://kittytigerskitchen.blogspot.com/2007/12/saving-money-by-using-rain-barrels.html

I also like to save money, and water is expensive where I live.

Greg K. said...

Chris, you mentioned you had great water pressure with this system. I'm curious how you use the water. Are we limited to directing the water to our gardens and lawns by gravity or physically carrying it only? I'm trying to plan where my barrels will be located and was wondering if they should be uphill from my raised bed gardens? I'm planning on hooking up my sump pump discharge pipe to my rain barrels. Currently it pumps water from the basement and around the foundation of my house out into the yard.

Chris the rainharvester: said...

Greg, I use a drip line hose (1/2") that runs thru my garden bed. From that, I insert the "T" barbs. Usually, you put mini 1/4" tube onto the "T" barbs, but I don't! I let the water come directly out of the "T" barbs. With the stack of barrels, the water shoots out pretty far when full. When it is almost empty, I still get enough pressure because the hose is about 1 foot lower than the place where the barrels are (4 inches of that 1 foot are because the barrels stand on gravel which is boardered by limestones). Anyway the pressure is enough to "drip" water my garden in this way. And no need to buy the drip-irrigation minitube / drip emitters!

greg K. said...

Did you connect the barrels top to bottom in any other way than the water flow hoses? To secure them in any way I mean? Or are they designed so that they next well together?
Thanks for the other response. I should be in good shape as my raised beds are a good foot or two lower than my tentative location for the rain barrels.

Chris the rainharvester: said...

Greg,
The barrels just sit on each other. They are pretty stable by themselves because they sit on a very level surface. But you could put boards ontop of the first row to make a single table-top like base for the upper row of barrels to sit on. Send me a picture of your setup - I'll put it here if you would like! Chris

Anonymous said...

Chris - do you ever do talks on your system? I would like to book you for a NPSOT chapter talk up here in the Dallas area, if you do. Thanks- Shauna

Anonymous said...

you can contact me here, about the speaking engagement:
garland at npsot dot org

Thanks! Shauna

Pennies In My Pocket said...

very informative. thanks!

~melody~

ed said...

Wow! I pay a flat rate in my town in New Hampshire, but rain barrels are certainly an interesting invention. Especially in the dryer south regions.

I remember my grandfather and grandmother used to have a couple that they watered their garden with when they lived in south Florida.

I'm curious as to mold growth, though. Anything that is standing for about a week in my region immediately becomes infested with bug larva and sludge. Not the best things to be spraying on my tomatoes and cucumbers, I'm sure!

c said...

Ed,

I've never seen any mold or algae growing. My Barrels are black (I'm not sure if white ones would grow algae etc). But, could algae be beneficial to the garden (like compost Tea)?

Anonymous said...

Regarding bug larvae and mold. I have a "more manual" system than Chris and I don't have a problem with them in the same climate (about 15 miles away). Keep the system closed and the bugs stay out. I heard of the old Roman cistern trick of putting a few drops of olive oil in an open rain collection system, This floats on the top and snuffs out the bugs. It seemed to work for me.

Pine Cove Water District said...

Just wanted to let you know that I can get used 55 gallon drums for $15 each at my local feed store.

Anonymous said...

You need to add a link to the http://wateringwithrainwater.blogspot.com blog!

Rainwater tanks said...

There are many home owners who install water tanks to store water for their homes. I really want to hide water tank so I want to install water tank underground.

Tankstar Rainwater Storage Solutions said...

Nice set up of rainwater storage. Good to see that are very artistic in your own way.
round tank

Tabatha Tidd said...

That’s resourcefulness at its best. It’s not a hidden fact that the most expensive component of a rainwater harvesting system is the tank, and gallons are actually the next best thing. This would totally make do for a household. A water conservation system need not be professionally installed, just as long as it serves its purpose. A ‘good job’ is not enough, but still, good job! ;)

Tabatha Tidd

Sharon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sharon said...

It’s always a good idea to make full use of rain water. And yes, using storage devices such as rainwater harvester or barrels (like what you did) is the best way to store water for future use, but be sure that everything is properly installed – the pipes, filter, etc. Conserve water properly.

-Sharon Strock

Sharon said...

Those are huge water tanks! I’m sure they’re heavy, how did you managed to take it up there? It must have drained your energy! You should carefully map out a plan on how your water system would work. I’m sure, it’s already done by now, maybe you could also post its end result.

-Sharon Strock

rainwater harvesting said...

I enjoyed reading your blog. Thanks for sharing such a great post with us.

conservation of water said...

we can use many things as a suppliment to the gallen.which helps to reduce the cost for rainwater harvesting.

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