Sunday, September 14th, 2014

America’s Hot New Collectible: Rain Water!

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s 19th century adage “The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain.” has taken on a new edge for the 21st century: “The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain, catch it, and use the water later to reduce your water bill.”

In the Greater Cincinnati area, we are blessed with four seasons and a generally reliable chance of rain. When the water bill arrived (again), we started thinking about ways to reduce our usage. We’ve discussed several money-saving options: water-saver shower heads, leak repair, installing new water-heater tanks, low-flow toilets, and water usage calculators. In the end, it’s hard to move the needle on the dreaded water bill.

As we turned on the sprinkler system, it dawned on us: Rain frequently falls on the Ohio Valley; let’s collect it!

What’s Involved in Rainwater Collection?
A quick search of Amazon.com illustrates the range of collection options: everything from simple rain barrels to sophisticated underground rainwater diverter kits. For many, an attractive 50-gallon barrel with a brass spigot is an easy and affordable option. Place one at each end of the house and collect up to 100 gallons with little effort.

For homeowners with bigger needs and some building skills, our always-entertaining friends over at Mother Earth News have an excellent article on building a 275-gallon collection system: http://www.motherearthnews.com/diy/build-a-rainwater-collection-system-zb0z1307zsal.aspx#axzz3D8S7wN00

If “easy” is your approach, there are several online sources for landscape-friendly rain barrels that can be ordered and delivered to your door in just a few days. For those intrigued by the Mother Earth News approach, the list of materials is surprisingly simple:
• Wood to build a simple pallet or platform
• Spigot and hardware
• Screen material (to keep debris out of the water)
• Gutters, downspouts and elbows
• Silicon or other appropriate sealant
For complete instructions, see: http://www.motherearthnews.com/diy/build-a-rainwater-collection-system-zb0z1307zsal.aspx#ixzz3D8Ty2G2m

Rainwater Uses
According to RainHarvester.com, ” There is no higher quality source of water available to us than rainwater…it represents a sustainable source of water ideal for use inside and outside the home. By using rainwater for toilet flushing, and garden use alone, one can reduce mains water requirements of a typical household by [a significant amount].”

Realistically, will we use rainwater in the bathroom, laundry, or kitchen? No. In the garden and washing the car? Yes, absolutely! And when the water bill goes down by another $10-20 next quarter, we will very proud of our conservation skills.

Water You Waiting For? The skilled, professionally-trained plumbers at Allied Reddi-Rooter have innovative ideas and top-quality plumbing materials for those seeking ways to conserve water. Call today and ask Ray to guide you through free estimate process: (513) 396-5300.