Rain Barrels

Why Use Rain Barrels?
Every time it rains, stormwater rushes to storm drains and into our local waterways. Often times this stormwater runoff carries with it pollutants it has picked up along the way, depositing them along with the water into our local waterways.

Any rainwater in an urban or suburban area that does not evaporate or infiltrate into the ground is considered stormwater.

Infiltration is when water on the ground surface soaks into the soil. Impervious surfaces like roofs, asphalt, and concrete do not allow for the infiltration to occur.

Infiltration of water on pervious surfaces is important because it reduces the amount runoff on a property and the probability of erosion occurring and pollutants leaving the property due to stormwater runoff.

Build your own rain barrel

Rain water from your roof and driveway travels to the street and into storm drains eventually draining into our creeks, lakes, and rivers.

What Can Rain Barrels Do For You?

Rain water collected is “soft water,” or water that does not contain minerals and chemicals like chlorine, calcium or fluorine. These chemicals provide protection for consumers, but are unnecessary for lawns and gardens.

Rain barrels reduce the amount of water that settles around the foundation of a building. The water that pools at the bottom of a downspout outlet can be collected by a rain barrel and dispensed away from a building. 

Collecting rain water reduces your water bill. During the summer dry months, water collected can be used as a supplementary water source for indoor and outdoor plants, flower gardens, and landscaping care. 

What Do Rain Barrels Do For Our Watersheds?
The Cycle Every household can do its part for their watershed by reducing the amount of runoff coming from their property.

Every time it rains, unabsorbed water rushes to storm drains and directly to local waterways. By collecting the stormwater from downspouts, the cycle that allows precipitation from a roof to become stormwater runoff is broken.

Pollutants such as pet waste, automotive fluids, sediment and fertilizer are kept on site and can be removed in an environmentally friendly way. 

What do Rain Barrels Look Like?
The basic design of a rain barrel consists of a container with an opening in the top of the barrel to collect the rain water from the downspout. The downspout is either connected directly to the top of the container or is placed over the opening. A spigot located near the bottom of the barrel is added to allow for the removal of the water in the barrel. There is also an overflow located near the top of the barrel. There is usually a screen or filter placed at the opening on the top of the barrel that keeps out mosquitoes, leaves, and other debris.

Samples of Rain Barrels:

Rain Barrel Rain Barrel Rain Barrel

A good way to make your rain barrel more presentable is to paint it

Operation, maintenance and other tips