How to Collect Water from Rain: Guide on Rainwater Harvesting and Collecting Rainwater

When the spring and summer months approach and the average household demand for water increases more than 40%, for outdoor gardens, lawns, and maybe preparedness,  A 1000 square foot roof can capture more than 20,000 gallons of free water. What is the best way to Collect Rainwater?

The Best Way To Collect Rainwater Is To:

  • Buy a 55-gallon FDA Food Grade Plastic Drum
  • Add a spigot to the Drum or use a Siphon.  
  • Construct a Platform for The Drums
  • Set in Place on a Platform Under Your Roof’s Gutters
  • Buy a Downspout Converter that will drain rainwater into the plastic drums

During the summer months, homeowners live mostly outside and spend a lot of time cleaning up from the winter and watering lawns and gardens  During summer Draughts, when water is restricted, harvesting that free resource seems like a perfect solution. As the global population increases, so does the demand for water.

This has led to people looking for innovative and sustainable water sources. One such solution is rainwater harvesting, which involves collecting, storing, and utilizing rainwater for various purposes. This reduces dependence on traditional water sources and promotes conservation. This article will provide you with a comprehensive guide on how to collect water from the rain, helping you contribute to a more sustainable future.


Introduction to Rainwater Harvesting: Why Collect Rainwater


Rainwater harvesting is an age-old practice that’s receiving renewed attention in today’s water-scarce world.  “Why collect rainwater at home?” The answer is simple – harvesting water from rain can lead to a substantial reduction in your water bill, and provide a crucial supplementary water source for your home. As move towards more sustainable living, adopting a rainwater harvesting system at home isn’t just a smart choice, it’s something that can be done with relative ease.

Now, you’re probably wondering about the best way to harvest rainwater. There are numerous methods available, in fact, plenty of ways to collect rainwater, each suited to your specific needs, home layout, and local weather conditions. The first point of contact in any rainwater harvesting system is the catchment area, and in most home systems, this is the roof. To effectively collect rainwater, your roof, and the attached gutter system play an important role.


Consider investing in a roof washer or a way to rinse off your roof before collecting H2O to remove debris and contaminants before the water is stored in barrels or other collecting devices. Subsequent filtering can be done for further purification if you plan to use the water for drinking.

Some county regulations may require specific systems or approval for rainwater harvesting, so make sure to check local rules on water harvesting before venturing into this efficient way to collect water. In a world that’s more conscious about water conservation each day, articles like these serve as an invaluable guide to harvesting rainwater. With ways discussed throughout, you’ll be on your way to becoming a responsible house owner who values sustainability.

Let’s conclude by noting that rainwater harvesting isn’t just for the solitary house. It’s an adaptable system that can fit businesses, larger infrastructure projects, and broader communities. Let’s make each day in December a step towards a greener and more sustainable future. Remember, the best ways to collect are often the simplest.


What is Rainwater Collection: The Science Behind Collecting Rainwater


Rainwater collection, commonly referred to as water harvesting, is a system that collects and stores rainwater for reuse before it reaches the ground. It’s a DIY technique that’s becoming quite popular among homeowners, and even some county authorities. The reasons for collecting water are numerous, they include: saving money, reducing water dependence, and promoting sustainable living. But what’s the science behind this system?


  • As rainwater falls on the surface (like your house roofing)
  • Rainwater channeled towards a specific point – usually, the gutter
  • Connecting to a pipeline that leads to a barrel or similar storage
  • Creating a practical rainwater collection system.
  • This collected rainwater can be used for various purposes around your house, like gardening. Simply put, you collect rainwater to utilize what would have otherwise been lost.


The efficiency of rainwater collection largely depends on the weather. More rain equals more water collected. So, how do you collect rainwater in a less rainy county? The answer is simple: Make your collection area larger. Larger roofing or extra barrels can increase your water-collecting capacity. Importantly, it aids in water conservation and may reduce dependence on regular water supplies. The collected water can also come in handy during a dry spell.

Water harvesting, or collecting rainwater, is more than a simple DIY system. It’s about making the most of nature’s gift, vital for our survival, and key for sustainable home gardening, especially in county areas with unpredictable weather patterns.


Rainwater Collection Setup: Building a Rainwater Collection System


In the world of gardening, there’s no better ally than rainwater. Why simply have it roll down your gutters when you can collect it with a rainwater collection system? The purpose of collecting rainwater isn’t solely to care for your green friends, though. Collected rainwater has extensive uses which extend past the garden gate. From watering plants to washing cars, the benefits of rainwater harvesting are vast.

Prior to setting up collection systems, it’s important to remember that rainwater collection is typically regulated by the County you live in, so do check local regulations. Collection systems for harvesting rainwater often involve devices like water barrels or even a larger water tank for those heavy rain days.

So how exactly do you build a rainwater collection system? The process involves directing water using rain barrels and then storing it in a water tank. Rain barrels are typically placed under downspouts to collect rainwater effectively. Remember though, the efficiency of your collection system heavily relies on the capacity of your water tank and water barrels.

Unsure about how much rain you can expect to collect? This depends largely on the average rain in your area. Of course, if you’re in the midst of county disputes or have had your rainwater harvesting system stolen, then this will be less clear. However, having a system in place will drastically help your garden grow, even during drought conditions.

As you can see, setting up a collection system for harvesting rainwater or collecting rainwater should be high on your to-do list. Not only will your water bill be reduced, but your plants and the environment will also thank you.


Rain Gutter Diverter

The Downspout Diverters are designed to close or open for manual operation. They are great for starting your Rain Harvesting operation from the best source of rainwater, your roof.



Choose the area where the main roof collects the most water and where you will have the best access to stacking and moving the rain barrels. You can link drums together to add more barrels by simply staggering the height of each drum and connecting them with a plastic hose in series. Gravity fills the first then the next one in sequence. Look at the picture at the top of the article. it’s very easy just to use separate platform heights for each drum.

Pick a 55 Gallon Container

If you are storing the water for an Emergency: You need to pick up an FDA-grade food-grade water storage BLUE container that will last up to 5 years. Each drum has 2 bung holes at the top that will accept a barrel pump.

These barrels are made of High-density Polyethylene UN-DOT-certified plastic cans that are made to store liquids. The drums are pressure tested and leakproof and come in 15-30- or 55-gallon capacities. Cost Approx. .$79.00-$99.00 or recondition used for about $49.00 or half the price of a new one.

Blue is coded for drinking water. In the event of an emergency, it won’t be confused with any other kind of liquid. Or more with the whole Kit.

In a survival situation or for disaster preparedness color codes are used in identifying chemicals and liquids that are in store in containers. It’s a good idea even if you are using it now for the garden.

16 Gallon Blue Plastic Drum, UN Rated, front view
Food Rated Blue Plastic Drum

Next is a platform for your water drums to sit on. A cinder block makes for a safe reliable flat surface but there could be some corrosive material that is added to the blocks when making them. This could harm the plastic drum if it’s sitting in one place too long.

A piece of thick pressure-treated plywood on top of the bock and underneath the barrel will separate the plastic from the concrete and should ensure that it lasts a long time. The barrel will be standing up which is the proper way to use or store them over periods of time.

You can run the barrels in series to take advantage of the free resource and fill more than one barrel at a time or a bigger holding tank. This is another easy project. Your platform would need to be bigger to accommodate more barrels.

So decide if you want to add another barrel in a series later just extend the platform and add and connect the barrels at the bottom, so when the first barrel fills it will move the incoming water to the second then the third then so on. Some people will fill one barrel add a Water Preserver Concentrate that will treat 55 gallons of water and store the drum for up to 5 years in a cool dark place like a garage.

If you decide to store rainwater for emergency situations and potable water supply then you’ll want to chlorinate the barrel like you would for a Drinking Water Well or new water line. You can do this by

*adding a half cup of bleach to the drum and then rinsing it out with the garden hose to purify the container.

*The gutter can be screened at the top where it enters the downspout and then at the point where it enters the drum

*Use a coffee filter to pick up smaller materials. No matter how clean the rain is, the roof will have some dirt on it.  So before the water gets to the drum you can filter the bigger debris that washes off.

*If your water is being used for the garden and lawn then you might not need to do this at all. It all depends on how you will use the water.


Water Barrels and Rain Barrels: Key Components of Your Collection System


As you look deeper into the world of rainwater harvesting, you’ll find that water barrels and rain barrels play a vital role. Just like the heart pumps blood through the body, rain barrels work tirelessly to help collect and distribute that vital life source – water. As a central component of your rainwater collection system, they are indispensable. Rain barrels come in various styles and sizes to cater to your exact needs. The beauty of barrels is their utility and versatility; they’re not just vessels, they’re also connectors, ensuring a seamless flow of water through your system.

The process of collecting rainwater is multifaceted. To make it simpler, consider the role of rain barrels, not once, but repeatedly, as they ensure every drop of water gets captured from your rain gutters. Once you’ve understood the importance of barrels, you’ll realize that using multiple rain barrels can drastically augment your rainwater collection process.

Barrel after barrel, the rainwater collected in this process can be beneficial to both you and your environment. By giving due importance to water barrels and rain barrels, you’re doing more than collecting rainwater; you’re taking an active step toward sustainability. The more barrels you add to your system, the more water you can collect. Remember, no drop of water should go to waste. Once you’ve incorporated these barrels, you’ll see that rainwater harvesting isn’t just a science, it’s an art, mastered one barrel at a time.


Types of Rainwater Collection Systems: Simple vs Complex


When it comes to collecting rainwater, there’s a myriad of collection systems that range from simple to complex. The choice of your system to collect rainwater ultimately depends on several factors, including your

  • budget
  • objectives
  • existing infrastructure.


A simple rainwater collection system might involve just a rain barrel placed under your home’s downspout. This is a favored DIY approach for many novices in rainwater collection.

Collecting rainwater using a barrel helps you understand the basics of rainwater harvesting. It’s an excellent starting point for those with a curiosity about how to efficiently use rain for their water needs. A barrel, placed beneath a catchment system, provides a straightforward way to collect rainwater. To put it simply, the rain falls, and you collect the water- a collection system doesn’t have to be complicated.

However, if you’re looking to collect rainwater on a larger scale, a more complex rainwater collection system might be in order. These systems usually feature multiple barrels or tanks, advanced catchment systems, and sometimes even filtration systems. It’s not as easy as a DIY project, it may demand professional expertise for setup. Notwithstanding, these systems offer more stability and a higher capacity for collecting rainwater.

Regardless of the system chosen, the aim remains the same – to collect and use the bountiful rainwater that nature provides us. Whether it’s a simple rain barrel or a complex collection system, your efforts in rainwater collection will certainly not go to waste.


What is Rainwater Harvesting and the Best Way to Utilize Rainwater?

Rainwater harvesting is collecting the run-off from a structure and storing it for later use, typically rain will collect from a roof in gutters & then into a storage tank.
Providing free H2O for:

Drinking H2O
lawn & garden
Washing cars
Washing pets
Re-filling pools
Indoor toilets & washers
Fire Protection ……………………………………………………………………………………………. Read more


Understanding Water Collection: The Role of Catchment Systems


It’s vital to understand water collection and the role of catchment systems when you’re exploring how to collect rainwater. The collection system you employ plays a pivotal part in how effectively the rainwater is harvested.

Specifically, catchment systems are designed to gather water when it rains and funnel it into storage tanks for future use. These systems function by utilizing your house’s gutters and rooftops as a catchment area that collects water. It’s worth noting that depending on your county regulations, your catchment system setup might vary.

Each water collection system you find usually has one key purpose: to collect water. Your system’s success and efficiency highly hinge on how well the water is collected. This extends to how it’s conveyed from the catchment area to the storage tanks and eventually used. After collection, the gathered water is usually stored in appropriate tanks. The number of tanks you require depends on the rainfall pattern in your county and your water usage habits.

Indeed, rainwater harvesting and its associated water collection system is more than just a handy way to save on your utility bill. It contributes significantly to sustainability and self-reliance, especially in drought-prone areas. Understanding all of these angles gives a better appreciation of the value when you collect water from rain, and of the intricate process in which water, water, water is collected, stored, and used.


Rainfall to Rain Barrels: How to Efficiently Collect Rainwater


The art of rainwater collection is as essential today as it was centuries ago. Primitive societies relied heavily on rainfall as a primary water source. Today, it’s not just a method of securing water but also a significant way to help our environment.

When we collect rainwater, we reduce the demand on our water supply system while effectively reusing a precious resource. By allowing rainfall to fill tanks and rain barrels, our tedious task of water collection becomes a more straightforward and efficient process, especially during rainy days.

The essence of rainwater collection lies in its system. A well-constructed system is a key to efficiently collect rainwater. Many people fail to understand that collecting rainwater doesn’t merely involve placing a bucket outside; instead, it requires strategically installed rain barrels to catch and store rainwater.

Tanks and barrels can vary in size and sophistication, from simple rain barrels to more complex tanks which play crucial roles in your collection system. In other words, you can go as big as you want to as long as you have the equipment and space.

The wonderful fact about rainwater is that it’s an abundant, renewable natural resource that is there for the taking, provided you have an effective method to collect it. Hence, the requirement for rain barrels. By catching rainwater in a rain barrel, you can ensure you have a supply of water for the non-rainy day.


Benefits of Collecting Rainwater: How Your Collected Water Can Be Use


Collecting, or rather, harvesting rainwater, has several rewards. When you collect water from rainfall, it’s stored for future use. The harvested water in your system, especially on a rainy day, can be a lifesaver. It’s not only about collecting the water, but it’s also about how your collected water can make a real difference.

Collected water is handy for a variety of purposes around your home. You could use it for gardening and cleaning for example. Garden plants thrive on natural rainwater, giving your garden a boost that regular tap water simply can’t match. And speaking of taps, the water you’ve collected can reduce reliance on your mains water supply. On a hot summer day, you’ll be thrilled as the water stored from rainfall helps quench your garden’s thirst.

If you’re into sustainability, you’ll love how the rainwater collection aligns perfectly with an eco-friendly lifestyle. The water that collects in your system doesn’t need energy-intense treatment like municipal water does. Simply collect, and voila – you’ve got water ready for use. And if you’re into DIY projects, setting up a system to harvest rainwater can make for an engaging endeavor.

By now, it’s clear that the benefits of collecting rainwater are significant. Not only does it help conserve water, but it also lends itself to various practical uses, supporting your domestic needs efficiently. So why not start collecting today? With the right system and tools, you’ll soon be savoring the numerous advantages of your harvested water.


How Long Can You Store Rainwater for Drinking?

  • Rainwater can be stored for up to 5 years if you prep the drum
  • Add 2 Cups of 6% Unscented Bleach to a Food Grade High-density Polyethylene Drum
  • Rinse out
  • Use a pre-filter to fill
  • Add an H2O Preserver
  • Seal & date Drum
  • Store off-ground in the shade
  • Before Drinking Run H2O through a Gravity Filter using RO & Carbon .…………………………………………………………………………………. Read more


Looking After Your Rainwater Collection System: Cost and Care


When it comes to handling a rainwater collection system, certain elements have to be accounted for, with care and cost being pivotal. Managing your collection system notably revolves around your water barrels or tanks. A house with a well-maintained system can save considerable amounts of water which translates to lower utility costs. The barrels or tanks for water collection can be either bought or made at home DIY-style; either way, they form a critical part of the collection system.

The worth of each barrel and tank depends on the rainwater harvesting setup of the house. Some systems consist of multiple barrels or tanks, and the complexity of the rainwater collection system decides the cost and care required.

Remember, each collection system has its strengths, whether simple or complex, and your home’s requirements should govern the choice of setup. The wide variety of rainwater collection systems play different roles, increasing the efficiency of rainwater harvesting from rainfall events through to the final collection process.

In summary, understanding the cost and care required for your rainwater collection system is crucial, whether it’s for a home or a larger setup. It might seem quite a task, but the benefits gained from collecting rainwater truly outweigh the effort, turning each raindrop into a valuable asset.


Rainwater Harvesting: Your Top Questions About Collecting Rainwater Answered


So, you’ve read about the art of collecting rainwater and you’re interested. However, you’re still left with pressing questions about rainwater harvesting. Don’t worry; this section answers some of the most frequently asked questions about collecting rainwater at home. Whether it’s to supplement your water use daily, grow a thriving garden, or make an environmental impact, collecting rainwater is not only a sustainable practice but also an important way to conserve water.

Different rainwater collection systems, from simple DIY setups to complex networks, can be installed at your home.

  • Which system you choose depends largely on your specific gardening or landscaping needs and the available space at your home.
  • Is Rain Harvesting Legal in Your State and County?

County regulations may also play a part in determining what kind of system you can have so do your homework before starting your project.

Remember, one of the most important aspects of rainwater harvesting is to have a collection system that effectively funnels rain from your house to your water storage tanks. These tanks, often referred to as water barrels or rain barrels, play a key role in your system. They store collected rain, making it available as wet weather becomes scarce.



In conclusion, rainwater harvesting and collecting rainwater are sustainable practices that help save our precious resources. This guide provides a simple yet effective way of capturing, storing, and using rainwater right in your backyard. Not only does it reduce your water bills, but it also lowers your environmental footprint. Start your rainwater collection project with these steps and reap the benefits from every drop of rain!


How Do You Filter Rainwater From a Roof?

Best filtration treating potable rainwater:

  • Leaf Guard Filters-catch most leaves & twigs
  • Downspout filters catch large particulate
  • Sediment Filter size measured in microns 25-micron-5-micron filters
  • Activated carbon kills bacteria 1-5 microns
  • UV Sterilization kills bacteria still present in H2O
  • RO
  • Chlorine ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. Read more


JimGalloway Author/Editor



Survival EDC-Rainwater Harvesting – Rules, Regulations, and Restrictions by State.


Q: What is rainwater harvesting and why should I collect rainwater at home?
A: Rainwater harvesting involves collecting, storing, and utilizing rainwater for various purposes. It reduces dependence on traditional water sources and promotes conservation. Collecting rainwater at home can lead to a substantial reduction in your water bill, and provide a crucial supplementary water source for your home promoting more sustainable living.
Q: How do I collect rainwater at home?
A: The roof and gutter system of your home serves as the first point of contact in any rainwater harvesting system. Utilize a roof washer to remove debris and contaminants before the water is stored in barrels or other collecting devices. Further purification can be done if you plan to use the water for drinking.
Q: Are there regulations about collecting rainwater?
A: Some county regulations may require specific systems or approval for rainwater harvesting. Therefore, it’s essential to check local rules on water harvesting before venturing on this efficient way to collect water.
Q: How effective is my rainwater collection effort tied to weather conditions?
A: The efficiency of rainwater collection largely depends on the weather. More rain equals more water collected. In a less rainy county, you can increase your collection area or install more barrels to increase your water collecting capacity.
Q: What are the benefits of collecting rainwater?
A: Collected rainwater can be used for a variety of purposes around your home such as gardening, washing cars, and more. It also reduces reliance on your mains water supply and promotes an eco-friendly lifestyle. It helps to conserve water and supports your domestic needs efficiently.



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