Monday, May 7, 2012

DIY Rain Barrel

Last weekend we tackled a project we've been wanting to do for awhile- make a rain barrel to collect rain water from the gutter run-off. This is especially good for us since we don't have a hose outlet in the back yard (that's a project for another day!). There's tons of useful information on the internet about making rain barrels, so we went with a simple solution for now. We may add some more modifications to it as time goes on.

Barrel- we just used a $9 Rubbermaid trashcan
Hose washer
'Nut'- I mean something to screw in inside the barrel to hold the spigot in place, we used a female coupler
 Bricks (optional) - we wanted it off the ground, so it's raised by a few inches with some landscape bricks we had

The whole process was pretty simply; first, cut off down spout at desired height. Attach flexible gutter tubing to the downspout, secure to fence (or other object) for more stability. Cut holes in trashcan (or barrel), one for the gutter tubing, and another for the spigot. Slide hose washer onto spigot threading, then into the hole in the rain barrel, then screw the but on from the inside. Put lid on and slide the tubing down into the barrel. Finished!

Since we got some rain over the weekend, we got to test it out last night! It works really well. We are going to add some caulking to the spigot joint once it dries out to make sure it doesn't start leaking, but so far so good. It works more like a siphon if you attach a short hose to it, not much water pressure of course. But it's good enough to fill up my watering can, which beats walking back and forth from the garage to fill up a bucket with water! Plus this water is free!

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