Montgomery Soil and Water Conservation District
Helping People and Communities Care for Land and Water
Information on our Previous Rain Barrel Systems:
Beginning in 2010, the Montgomery SWCD designed and sold a unique Rain Barrel kit because we weren't satisfied with much of what was on the market at that time. We have since discovered and begun selling our current kits, and have been very pleased with their performance! For those of you who want to make a barrel based on our old system, or need replacement parts, follow the links to our Parts & Potential Suppliers page, and our Previous Rain Barrel System Assembly page. *Please Note: company names listed are provided as a courtesy, and do not equal endorsements or guarantee availability.
Rain Barrel Benefits:
A rain barrel connected to your downspout—also known as a rain bank—is a great way to keep stormwater out of the system and to cut down your water bill! Because you are collecting right off the roof, it has few contaminants and is perfect for
Diverting Water from the Downspout
Text from composters.com
Diverting water from your downspout into rainwater catchment systems has several advantages:
Residential irrigation can account for 40% of domestic water consumption in a given municipality. Rain barrels not only store water, they help decrease demand during the sweltering summer months. Only 1/4 inch of rainfall runoff from the average roof will completely fill the typical barrel. Collection of water from rooftop runoff can provide an ample supply of this free "soft water" containing no chlorine, lime or calcium. Because it tends to have fewer sediments and dissolved salts than municipal water, rain water is ideal for a multitude of applications, including biodynamic and organic vegetable gardens, raised planter beds for botanicals, indoor tropical plants like ferns and orchids, automobile washing, and cleaning household windows.
Gardens and lawns need water to stay healthy. Like humans, if plants become dehydrated, their immunity decreases and they become susceptible to disease and infection. By keeping your soil watered, you can maintain the delicate balance of moisture and micronutrients essential for maintaining a beautiful, healthy lawn and garden.
Saving water in this manner will reduce you demand for treated tap water, and save money by lowering your monthly bill. Rain water diversion will also help decrease the burden on water treatment facilities and municipal drainage systems during storms. The storage of rain water is also recommended for general emergency preparedness, or for areas prone to disasters or drought. A good formula to remember: 1 inch of rain on a 1,000 sq ft roof yields 623 gallons of water. Calculate the yield of your roof by multiplying the square footage of your roof by 623 and divide by 1000.
Rainwater collection is an easy way to save money while helping the environment. Most rainwater collection systems rely on gravity and take no mechanical systems to operate. This means they take no energy to operate, either. You will save money through decreased use of city water; allow yourself the flexibility of watering based on your own needs and not those of the city, and all the while saving valuable aquifer and reservoir water. You’ll be keeping the ground and water healthy while providing essential growth for your garden and lawn.