Monday, September 21, 2009

How To Make A Rain Barrel

Way back when I started this blog I promised to write a post on how to make a rain barrel. Today is finally the day!

It is really pretty easy- I know you can do it. First buy a food grade rain barrel. We got ours from Dave the Barrel Man. You can also get complete rain barrels made there. We just bought three plain barrels and made our own. Then you need a faucet, some plumbing repair rubber, a washer and a screw for the faucet. We got everything at Home Depot. We picked out the faucet first and then explained the plan to the plumbing salesman. He went around and helped us find the other parts we needed. You will also need-a helper, cement blocks and a drill. Maybe tin snips to cut your gutter.

Step One- Drill a hole the same size as your faucet a few inches above the bottom of the barrel.

Step Two-Trace end of faucet onto the rubber sheet. Cut out the circle.

Step Three- Hand screw the faucet into the rain barrel hole.

Step Four- Stack the remaining materials in this order- rubber sheet with hole, washer, screw. Turn barrel on to its side and climb in. Put the rubber against the barrel, put on the washer and screw it in. You will need a helper to hold the faucet on the outside of the barrel so you an screw it all together. So now it should look like faucet on the outside, barrel, rubber sheet, washer and screw.

Ta da!!

Now you will need to prepare the spot you want the barrel to go. Remember its going to be incredible heavy when its filled. Rake and flatting the area under your gutter. You want it to be a level, flat ground surface. Then place four cement blocks down. This will raise the barrel to get gravity working on your side when you need the water to run out of the hose. Then place your barrel on the cement. Cut the gutter to be above the barrel.

You are going to want to have something as a lid to keep out mosquitoes and leaves. We have two options working over here. One is the lid the barrels came with with a hole cut into the top:

The other is just a window screen lid. We bought it at the Habitat for Humanity Restore for about 50 cents.

You are also going to want to buy Mosquito Dunks- You can get them at Home Depot or any big home improvement store. Some nurseries are starting to sell them too. These kill your mosquitoes that would otherwise breed in your barrels.

Hook up your hose and wait for the rain!

***Here is a more recent post on upgrading your rain barrel. 

1 comment:

  1. Daffodil PlanterSeptember 26, 2009 at 5:51 AM

    That is so clear that even my husband and I could manage it! And we usually turn away sadly when we read the ominous words "easy for the average homeowner".

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