A Rain Barrel is a ‘rain collecting system,’ made up of a barrel that hooks into your existing downspouts and stores some of the rain water for you to use later, when you need it. The soft rain water is better for plants, and can also be used to wash cars and windows without fear of spotting! At the same time, you help the environment by keeping back some of the ‘extra’ water that overfills urban streams after a rain. Many people aren’t aware that residential irrigation can account for 30-40% of domestic water consumption. Each rain barrel can be filled with only 1/4 inch of rainfall runoff from the average roof.
Using water from your Rain Barrel can also lower your water bill and decrease demand for the filtered, treated water (and cost to the city for treatment and transport) if you are part of a city water system.
Storing rain from a storm also reduces ‘runoff’, the water from a rainstorm along with anything it carries with it that flows across the ground and into storm sewers, ditches, streams, rivers and lakes. Because of all the hard surfaces in urban areas, like parking lots and roofs, rain water reaches streams quicker and flowing faster than it used to. Storing some of that water helps protect our streams.
The kit the Montgomery SWCD sells included instructions and all the materials you need to install your barrel. You can order just the kit, or the kit and one or two barrels. See the order form for details! You can order a Rain Barrel from our office any time. Once your order is recieved, we will call you to let you know your barrel is ready to pick up!