DIY Rain Barrels
Time Required: 2-4 hours
Did you know that up to 600 gallons of water can be collected from just 1” of rain falling off a 1,000 square foot house? Don’t let that water go to waste.
Start saving money and conserving rain water by building your own rain barrel to water your landscape.
There are other benefits to having your own rain barrel. It reduces stormwater runoff and can direct water away from house foundations, potentially preventing basement flooding.
Drill a hole in a 55-gallon plastic barrel with screw-top lid using a 1” drill bit 5” from the base. Drill just above the curve of the barrel. Apply sealant to the threading of a boiler drain and screw it into the hole. Some force is necessary.
Drill an overflow hole hidden in the back of the barrel 3” from the top using a 1” drill bit. Apply sealant to the threading on the hex nipple and screw it in to the hole. Cap the overflow hole to prevent bugs or debris from entering.
Cut two screen pieces to cover the filter holes on the underside of the barrel lid. Apply a liberal amount of sealant around the underside of the lid around the holes and place the screens over the holes. Repeat this on the top side of the lid.
Determine which gutter the barrel will collect rain from. Level out an area underneath or near the gutter. Place the barrel atop retaining wall blocks. Attach a flex-a-spout to your rain gutter using the manufacturer’s instructions. Hover the other end of the spout over the filter holes.
TIP: Use a food-grade barrel so the water isn’t contaminated by any toxic material.