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.

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