Have you ever thought about using rainwater for your own household purposes? Rains that fall over you house can not simply be withdrawn from the roof, soaking the ground; they can be collected to help you save both your money and the environment.
What do you need to collect rainwater?
- You need a slanting roof that is covered with a non-toxic material. Slanting roofs provide more water that runs down their sides, and this water is clean and fresh. Flat roofs provide stagnation of water and much more dirt that cannot be washed away. Non-toxic roofing involves natural materials: ceramic tiles, slates. Metal or asphalt shingles, materials that contain asbestos or copper are totally unsuitable even if you are going to use the water for gardening only.
- Then, you need a system of pipes and filters that bring the water to a special tank. Water tanks come in diverse sizes, so it is up to you to calculate the amount you require and choose the most suitable size. Remember that it makes no sense to collect too much: even after being filtered, stagnating water can be affected by microorganisms. With some practice, you will know how much you need and when to stop collecting.
- Now, you will need a proper system of pipes that will provide the rainwater to the toilet and washing machine, to garden hoses and sprinkling systems, to your garage where you wash your car and anywhere else where you need it. However, you need to make sure that rainwater never reaches the tap, which provides water that is used for cooking. Without special filters you will never make the rainwater clean enough for drinking or cooking. At the same time, you need to make sure that in case there is not enough rainwater in the tank, it is possible to switch over to tap water supply and provide the life needs with enough water. All this is quite complicated, so you will need help from professionals.
- Finally, you need to make sure whether you want your rainwater tank to be installed beside the house or hidden in the basement or under the ground. Both these options have their benefits. If you install the water tank beside the house, you can collect rainwater with the help of its opened lid. If you choose underground installation, your water tank will stay always cool, preventing development of algae and bacteria.