Two Essential Components Of Rainwater Harvesting

Construction & Contractors Blog

One of the best things about rainwater harvesting is that, apart from the initial equipment purchase and installation costs, you won't have to spend any more money for the water. All you need is a collection point, a transportation system, and a storage system. The issue of the collection point is simple because your roof acts as an excellent trap for rainfall. Here is the information you need for the transportation and storage systems:


You need an efficient way to transport the water from the roof to the storage area. A system of gutters, downspouts and filters will suffice for this purpose. Here is what you need to know about each component:

  • Gutters – they should be at least 5 inches wide. The more storms you have in your area, the wider the gutters you need. Gutters with rounded bottoms are better at keeping things flowing and preventing debris buildup and blockage.
  • Downspouts – the rule of thumb is to have one square each of downspout per 100 square feet of the water collection area (roof).
  • Filters – you need a filter to trap different kinds of debris (such as leaves and bits of windblown paper) that usually contaminate rainwater. Choose your mesh size according to the type of debris you wish to trap. For example, a fine mesh is necessary to keep away dead insects.


When it comes to storage, you have the option of placing the tanks underground or above ground. Whichever location you choose, place it as near the downspouts as is convenient to minimize the materials needed for the transportation.

Above Ground Tanks

These are relatively cheap and easy to install and maintain. Note that round tanks are more expensive than rectangular tanks, but the latter are better at optimizing space usage. The tanks are available in different materials such as:

  • Steel –  is easily available, relatively inexpensive and comes in very large sizes, but is prone to rust
  • Concrete – is strong and durable, but isn't exactly cheap
  • Fiberglass – is rigid, easy to maintain and lightweight
  • Plastic – is probably the most common type available; probably because it is relatively cheap

Make sure you include an overflow valve to prevent tank damage when there is too much rainfall.

Underground Tanks

Also known as in-ground storage tanks, these are more expensive than above-ground tanks. A further disadvantage is that you have to pump out the water, unlike the above-ground tanks whose waters flow via gravity. However, they are rarely attacked by fungal and other microorganisms due to their inhospitable environments. Moreover, they are necessary where space constraints are a concern. The common materials for in-ground storage include fiberglass, steel, and concrete.

For more information, speak to experts like Kelly's Pipe & Supply Company.


27 March 2015

Pool House Parties: Building Your Backyard Escape

When I decided to turn my backyard into a pool and spa space, I wanted to have a pool house built. Adding a pool house would give me somewhere for everyone to shower and change without tracking pool water and dirt into the main house. I worked with a local contractor to construct a pool house with an outdoor kitchen, outdoor showers, and full indoor restroom facilities as well as a game room and changing rooms. I created this site to journal the process so that I could hopefully inspire others to do the same. I hope this site takes some of the mystery out of the construction process for you so you can build the backyard structure you've always wanted.