Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Traditional rainwater storage through Rain Barrels.

Rain barrels are large containers used to collect rain water. Rain water is being increasingly stored for use in gardens flushes and other non potable usage. Water resources are dwindling and one of the methods of preserving water is by conserving and collecting rain water for non drinking purposes. Rain barrels are available commercially made of steel stainless steel plastic fiberglass and concrete. Home made rain barrels out of earthen pots or wood to go with the overall effect of the landscape are preferred by some. Decorative water barrels with faux wood exteriors are also available to give a quaint effect to the exterior of a house. To get potable water a mesh placed around the mouth of the rainwater barrel will filter the water. Collecting rain water through rain barrels is an old fashioned technique of water conservation that never goes out of fashion. Wodden rain barrels

Rain barrels

Friday, December 26, 2008

Water Conservation in your own home

Rain barrel planter, Make a rain barrel

Water sustains life and water conservation is not only necessary for individual comfort but as a service for humanity as a whole. Water conservation begins at home. You should look around your own home for ways to conserve water. You should use low water usage fittings in the toilets and kitchen and install recycling units for water conservation in your own home.

Rain barrel + parts

Drip irrigation is the best form of irrigation for water conservation in the garden and watering should be done before 10 am in the morning and after 8 pm at night. For the lawn a variety of turf grass that requires less water than others should be chosen. For water conservation in your laundry you should use the low water setting and turn the machine on only when there is a full load of clothes. You should plug the sink when you wash dishes to rinse dishes rather than rinse them under the tap for better water conservation at home. You need to change your lifestyle to a very small extent and achieve optimum water conservation in your home. see more..

Rain barrel planter

Monday, December 22, 2008

Rain Barrels Help Save The Planet

More and more people are returning to the use of rain barrels. The most likely reasons for this are drought situations occurring in many parts of the country as well as an increasing awareness of the need for water conservation in general.

The drivers that make people choose to collect rainwater vary. Many see it as the answer to maintaining green lawns and healthy gardens despite watering restrictions in water poor cities and towns. Others turn to rain barrels to keep their water bills down. Water routed from rain barrels and cisterns can be used, not only for watering plants and grass, but for washing, bathing and mostly any water use other than consumption or cooking.

Many people concerned with conservation and maintaining green lifestyles use rain barrels with water conservation as their primary goal.

Rain barrels can be purchased commercially or made from recycled wooden or plastic storage barrels. Regardless of the source of your barrel, you will need the following basics:
Rain gutter and downspout
Barrel or other large container
Screen to block leaves and twigs, etc.
4. Tight fitting lid
5. Distribution device

Your existing rain gutters will take care of the first item needed. If not, installing them will be an important first step. A downspout will divert the rainwater into the waiting container. Materials commonly used for rain barrels are plastic or wood, and although they can be purchased new, recycled barrels are available. If a recycled barrel is used, make sure you know what the barrel has stored in the past to avoid tainting the water with harmful residues. Childproof your rain barrels with tight fitting lids. Rain barrels need a distribution outlet in the form of a spout with a valve or a piece of hose. A benefit of harvesting rainwater is that it has no chlorine or other chemicals which makes it healthy for plants. Recycling rainwater rather than using potable supplies for watering lawns and plants reduces the stress on water supplies to municipalities. Also, when rain fills the drains and gutters, it mixes with wastewater and runs off into rivers and streams. Natural drainage through the soil and rock bed purifies the water before it reenters the ecosystem.

On a personal level, using rain barrels to collect and store rainwater helps your wallet as well as your plants. It is also good for the environment by reducing consumption and improving the quality of our natural water supplies.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Reducing Your Water Consumption With Rain Barrels

It is estimated that the average rain shower that falls on the typical home results in more than 700 gallons of perfectly good rainwater running off and seeping into the ground. All of that wasted rainwater could have otherwise been used for a good number of baths or showers. Larger buildings with correspondingly larger span roofs of course result in even more rainwater being wasted, often as much as several thousand gallons of rainwater at a time.

Since water is an ever decreasing precious resource, it only makes sense to look into the many benefits that rain barrels can offer you as well as the environment. Besides being wasted, this rainwater also enters the storm drains through the ground where it can deposit various toxic materials and other pollutants, causing further harm to the environment.

Rain barrels effectively address these issues by allowing you to collect and store rainwater for future use. In its most basic form, rain barrels are simply large containers that collect water that comes from rooftops or other impermeable surfaces around the home. In a good rainstorm, rain barrels can collect more than 200 gallons of rain water, so you can imagine that they can be filled quite rapidly. This will then result in you having a considerable amount of water that can be used for various purposes around the home, ranging from watering plants and trees, to car and window washing chores. Not only will this lessen the amount of water that is wasted, it will also reduce the amount of pollutants that enter the local ground water supply and reduce your dependence on the local water provider in your area.

Your options for rain barrels range from commercially available rain barrels to rain barrels made out of materials that can be found around the home or in a typical garden supply store. Many commercial rain barrels have fixtures built in such as hose or faucet connectors, which make them convenient for regular use or for hooking up with other rain barrels in order to collect even more rainwater. Constructing your own rain barrels will take some time, effort and planning, although this will be offset by the money that you will save from having to buy commercial rain barrels. Whichever option you choose to go for, you will want to make sure that your rain barrels are ideally situated to collect as much rainwater as possible.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Your Budget and the Environment Will Love Your Rain Barrels

We lived in a row house in the city for years and years and did not have a big enough yard to even worry about watering when the weather was hot and dry. We recently moved to a house with a bigger yard that requires more maintenance and attention. My husband is adamant about not watering the grass in our yard, even when we hit a hot and dry patch with the weather. Luckily, the majority of our neighbors have the same opinion. The plants and bushes are another story. We have had an inordinate amount of rain this year. In between those really wet weeks, though, there were really hot weeks. Every time I would turn on the hose outside, I felt guilty that I had not collected some rain from the downpours. I realized that rain barrels were the answer.

I read a shocking statistic once that an estimated 40 percent of household water in the summer months is used to water gardens and lawns. Capturing rain water with a system of rain barrels can decrease the demand on our municipal water supplies significantly. The Maryland Environmental Design Program believes rain barrels could allow a consumer to save about 1,300 gallons of water during peak water usage months. Clean water is one of our precious resources. It should be used wisely. City sewer infrastructures are more frequently overflowing during downpours, due to population increases. Rain barrels can decrease the demand on those systems. In a world where almost nothing is free anymore, rain water is one of the exceptions. Harnessing rain water via rain barrels is the cheapest way to water your plants and lawn. Having a stash of water in rain barrels also allows you to water at your leisure, if your city has any water restriction times. Rain water also does not contain chlorine, unlike public water sources.

Utilizing your existing downspouts and gutters, rain barrels offer a place to store the harnessed water for when you need it. You can find all sorts of rain barrels, depending on your budget and needs. There are basic plastic barrels, or a fancy pottery barrels that will dazzle your neighbors. I recommend child proofing your rain barrels, which means making sure all barrels have a secure top or are too narrow for a child to get inside. Many barrel intakes can be fitted with a filter to help keep mosquitoes at bay. Rain barrels with overflow hoses and a spout are also very handy.

Everyone should be utilizing rain barrels. Even if you do not own your home, get your landlord on board and offer to install a barrel yourself. Help your bottom line and the world by installing some rain barrels. I am embarrassed that my environmentally conscious household waited so long to do it.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Many Uses Of Rain Barrels

Rain barrels which are also called rainwater tanks or water butts in the United Kingdom are water tanks that are used for the collection and storage of rain water from rooftops. This water usually passes through rain gutters that are installed on roofs. Similar storage containers also known as rainwater tanks are mainly used to collect harvested rain. Rain barrels are sometimes installed to collect water running off from concrete patios and even driveways.

Rain barrels actually have many uses, not the least of which is the storage of rain water for later use. They can also be used to lessen mains water consumption, which can have significant beneficial effects on the economy as well as the environment. Of course being able to store rain water also results in a certain measure of self sufficiency, since doing so will allow you to be less dependent on mains water to some degree, depending on how much water you consume on a regular basis.

The stored water from the rain barrels may itself be used for garden irrigation and other agricultural purposes, for household uses such as flushing toilets, washing clothes and cars, and in some cases even for drinking. This can be a great benefit in areas where water is less available, cost prohibitive or unsafe to drink. This is one of the main reasons why rain barrels can often be seen in areas with arid climates, wherein water is collected during the rainy season and used later when water is scarce. In any case, water that is collected from rain barrels must still be protected against contamination and filtered if possible.

Some rain barrels can be a bit expensive, but their many uses means that they will pay for themselves in the long run. Some homeowners have even been known to use small rain barrels that have a correspondingly smaller capacity. Rain barrels can even be fashioned from food containers that have been recycled, transport barrels, and even barrels used in the production of wine and whiskey. These types of rain barrels have the benefit of being quite inexpensive. Keep in mind that with these types of rain barrels, it is important to make sure that they are sufficiently sealed in order to prevent the entry of mosquitoes. Even seemingly protected from mosquito entry, these rain barrels can still contain dangerous mosquito larvae, especially if you do not use a filter.