Collecting Rainwater for Beginners

Collecting rainwater is a rather simple yet, very efficient way to save some money. On of that, it is environmentally sound solution. All you need is couple of barrels and you can start the procedure.
Unfortunately, even with all the benefits of collecting rainwater, not enough people do it. This is a real waste because you can accomplish so much with so little. It is especially important for people who have big gardens that require irrigation. However, it can also be used as a way to supply your home with fresh drinkable water.
There are two main ways to collect it: with rainwater barrels or with a rainwater collection system.
Rainwater barrels 

Rainwater barrels are nothing new. For years and year people have been using them either for irrigation or cleaning.
Back in the day, metals were commonly used for their creation. Nowadays, plastic is a much more viable solution. Not only is it cleaner but it also last longer.
Use of rain barrels can vary:
For watering your plants and vegetables
For cleaning your car
For washing yourself
For drinking
If you are using the water for watering or cleaning, you should definitely position barrels below the gutter drain. During a rainy day, most of the water will accumulate on the roof and then flow down the gutters. It is a much better solution than keeping the barrel in the open. However, it is not the best option if you wish to drink it or wash yourself with it.
If you wish to use rainwater for drinking, you need to position the barrels in middle of your backyard/garden. Make sure rain falls directly into barrels without any contact with trees or house. Nevertheless, before you drink it, you will have to filter it. In certain areas with high air pollution, it might be unsafe to use rainwater for drinking even if you process it. 

Rainwater collection system

Rainwater collection systems are far more complex and they are tailor-made for people who wish to fully rely on rain instead of local water supply. They require professional installation and initial investment.
Collecting systems use bigger tanks for storing water. They can be placed either below or above the ground depending on your preferences. Like barrels, they need to be connected to house’s gutters for optimal supply. After that, water will go from tank to other appliances and sink. 
As you can presume, you will also need to buy a filtration system as well as a water pump. There are several things that can go wrong with the system so it will have to be properly maintained. You will also have to connect it to your boiler so that you can have hot water all the time.

Which one is better?

There is no clear answer to this question.
If you are primarily concerned with irrigation, then the barrels will do the trick. Rainwater collection system is great for households that wish to become independent from local water sources. 
Basically, you can get both of these if you wish. Collection system can be used within your home while the barrels can be used for watering the garden.
Anyway, I would recommend getting barrels for start. After seeing all the benefits of free water, a lot of people decide to get the entire collection system. In long term, having such a system is much cheaper than paying for steep water bills.

About the author: Nick Stoyanov is a copywriter and content strategist at – Australia’s largest online pump store. 4 Pumps is an Australian company that focuses on the national distribution of its comprehensive range of quality pumping products.

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