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Rainwater harvesting

  • #1
    Registered Users Posts: 5,544 ✭✭✭ tom1ie

    Hi all,
    I am getting a garden shed in the next couple of weeks and I want to get a rainwater harvesting system in place to water the raised bed hoop house I've put in for growing veg.
    Has anyone set something up like this before and have they got any advice?
    Was thinking of using black ibc totes and some filters etc on the downpipes.

    It's be nice to have a water source when we inevitably get water shortages later in the year.


  • What I would do if I had the space is use say a 220l barrel attached at the top to a IBC.

    Rainwater goes into the 200l barrel and keeps it nearly full and then goes into the IBC. Most of the sediment will stay in the barrel which can be tipped up and washed out occaisionally.

    As it is I have several 220l barrels connected with one inch fittings.

    Wake me up when it's all over.

  • At one house I had an ( enclosed) rainwater tank fed from the gutters, and pipes across to my polytunnel and main garden. It was excellent.

  • Graces7 wrote: »
    At one house I had an ( enclosed) rainwater tank fed from the gutters, and pipes across to my polytunnel and main garden. It was excellent.

    That sounds interesting.
    Was the tank inside in case of frost?
    What size tank we talking about graces? IBC tote or rain barrell?
    Did you have the pipes over to your poly tunnel underground?

  • When water charges came in I researched collecting rainwater. As suggested freezing is an issue, even insulation is no good unless you have a heat source to prevent freezing over multiple days. Ideally you have underground storage. If used for drinking you need really good cleaning system with possibly UV lights. I toyed of the idea of feeding untreated rainwater to the likes of toilets and showers with a backup of mains in case of no rain for many weeks.

    It seemed like a lot of work at with no water charges does not make financial sense.

    I suggest maybe adding a second water tank in the attic, in series with the first one. That will give you double the local tap water reserve in case of burst mains nearby etc. If you feed the fresh tap water into one tank, and take the water out if the other tank, it should allow enough movement in both tanks so the water does not stagnate. I think its impractical to collect rain water for drinking unless you are off grid and off the mains supply. If water was charged for then you could do some sort of justification.

    In the real world we use a massive amount of water daily and a few hundred litres of storage won't last long unless you ration it by not showering etc.