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Rain Harvesting Quick Facts

watering garden

As I write this blog post, I'm hunkered down at a coffee shop next to a window, watching the April Showers come down.  While the rain will help those tulips bloom, there is even a better way to make use of the rain.  Collect it and reuse it!

Here are some rain harvesting quick facts:

  • Rain harvesting has been done since as far back as 850 BC.  Historically, the people of Ancient Rome and Ancient Egypt collected rain in all sorts of ways, such as aqueducts.  
  •  In some parts of the world, harvesting rain is not legal -- including states such as Colorado, Utah, and Washington.  (Or at least it wasn't until recently)  Before installing a rain collection system, be sure to check with local laws to make sure it's legal where you live.
  • You will save money.  Rainwater is obviously free, so you will save money on your water bill. The only cost is purchasing the rain barrel.
  • If you want to save even more money, you can make your own rain barrel inexpensively. (Here's a video on constructing an inexpensive rain barrel)
  • Rain collection reduces flooding and erosion of stormwater drains.
  • Rainwater is great for watering plants, but there are other non-potable uses for rainwater.  You can wash your car, fill your pool, and wash your pooch.
  • You can use it in your washing machine!  Rainwater is good for laundry because it is soft water, which means you can use less detergent. 
  • If you're looking to get your home LEED certified, a rain collection system can help!  Read more about LEED points and rain collecting.
  • You can save even more water by using rainwater in a drip irrigation system.  
  • Lower your carbon footprint.  Lessening your reliance on tap water reduces the need for tanker trucks, water processing plants, and water treatment chemicals. Those systems are important for potable (drinking) water, but unnecessary for watering your garden and other non-potable uses.