Sunday, July 12, 2009

Newest frugal investment UPDATED!

In our never ending quest to become more enviromentally friendly, hubs and I have been discussing getting a rain barrel to collect water for the garden and lawn. We went ahead and made the leap (i.e. investment) today. This is a long term investment for sure. As it was $50 and we certainly will not save $50 in our water bill right away. But I calculate that it should pay for itself within a year.

A rain barrel collects rain water from the down spout of the roof gutter. It has a tight mesh screen at the opening to prevent most dirt and gravel from passing into the barrel. This mesh also prevents insects from invading the water. There is an overflow spout at the top (the blue thing coming out of the top of the barrel). And it has a spout at the bottom of the barrel so that a regular garden hose can attach to it. From there you water your garden or lawn as normal.

Rain barrels can be purchased at many hardware stores as well as through Metro Public Works at the Omahundro Recycling and Composting Convenience Center. They are $50 at Metro Public Works.

It took us about 20 minutes to put the rain barrel together and in place once we got it home.

I'll let you know how it goes!
UPDATE: Since this post, we've acquired 2 more rain barrels. We're working on making all 3 rain barrels work together right now. And just this week, hubs purchased a pump online to help with the water pressure. It's still a work in progress, but we're determined to make this work as a reliable water source. Our water rates have went up twice in one year!!

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Blogger Unknown said...

Tara, while you are exploring the venture of "saving our natural resources and your $$$ at the same time, (as good mommies should do, lol) you might be interested to know the various uses for that rainwater you are going to be collecting. I'm sure my list isn't complete but after 60+ years of experience in rainwater harvesting (before it was even called that!)I've learned even more uses. You can wash your hair, flush the toilet, use as drinking water for pets, bird baths, fountains, clean up yard tools, exterior furniture, deck floors, lanais, windows, wash the car, truck, bikes, rinse off flower pots, rinse garden veggies, water the Victory Garden, plants, flowers, lawn, sidewalk, wash boots that are nasty, etc.
Just a few ways to save money by not using potable water.
Keep your gutters squeaky clean. My granny always said (especially when it was time for me to clean her gutters) "...rainwater going into my barrels is only as clean as the rainwater coming out of my gutters." And, she was "right as rain."
Hate cleaning rain gutters? Me too, until I found the Gutter Clutter Buster attachment tool for my wet/dry vac. Now, I can stay safely on the ground while I vacuum out my gutters in half the time it normally takes. I stay clean, off the ladders, get the job done faster and easier.
Then I can save more money (interested yet?) by using the debris from my gutters, collected in my vac container, for my compost pile or as much around my plants to conserve even more water. And, you don't use water to clean those gutters. Wow.....what a savings... all the way around!!!
Happy Harvesting and Keep That Water Clean....While you save, save, save.

August 9, 2009 at 4:59 PM  

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