Off-Grid » Video: DIY Rainwater Collection System

Video: DIY Rainwater Collection System

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Here’s a great video from MrNativeTexan that will show you how put together a simple-to-construct rainwater collection system for your garden! There are a couple of neat ideas going on here – connecting the barrels with a manifold not only makes them fill at the same rate, but there’s also only one tap needed. Four barrels leads to an increased pressure at the tap and the barrels drain from below so they can be fully emptied.



Water is synonymous with life, it’s a precious resource and we need to reduce our demand wherever possible to save trouble for future generations. If we don’t act with this in mind it’s easy to see that people could be fighting over clean water in years to come. A project like this is one easy step in the right direction!

Collecting your rainwater is one way to avoid having to use mains drinking water for watering your plants – in fact it’s better for them without the added chlorine, which is toxic. Chlorine and minerals in tap water could potentially contribute to nutrient lock-out. A collection system is cheap to build and needs very little maintenance. When rainfall is low you could have your own supply ready to go when you need it the most and the whole system will fill up again fast during heavy rain. Every millimetre of rain on each square metre of roof (as seen from directly above) will give you up to one litre of water.

If you have a greenhouse or garden shed, it can provide you with a free water supply a long way from the house, which is ideal for large gardens and allotments. This type of system would work on your house or garage (it’s good for washing the car as well) and a rainwater system can even be plumbed in to your home for use in applications where non-potable water is fine – such as the shower, washing machine or toilet. Most of us have a water meter and pay for the amount we use – your rainwater system would start paying for itself straight away! I know a lady who collects rainwater to wash her hair because it works better for her hair than the highly mineralized well water from her ranch.

If you want to go one step further, a filter system and ultra-violet sterilising unit will make the water safe to drink so you could go 100% off-grid! Typically the unit uses about 40w electrical power. Find out all you need to know here: http://www.lowimpact.org/factsheet_rainwater_harvesting.htm

Rainwater harvesting is being promoted by the charity WaterAid to relieve drought and water supply problems in Africa. It’s making a big difference there and the technology is so easy to put in place anywhere in the world. It still astonishes me that some locations have made rainwater collection illegal. I find that quite absurd. What happened to the “land of the free”? 😉

Video: DIY Rainwater Collection System






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What REALLY Happens When You Bury a Shipping Container? (Hint: It's A Bit Crazy...)

Shipping containers are all the rage - but if you are thinking about buying one, you MUST watch this video first:

shipping container video

There's a general belief that if you bury a shipping container you can create an awesome root cellar / storm shelter / survival bunker.

But is a shipping container strong enough to handle the pressure?

Watch the video to see what happens:

What Really Happens When You Bury a Shipping Container? (Click To Watch Video)


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11 Comments

  • By Rebecka, November 21, 2013 @ 5:14 pm

    I think this is a wonderful idea. I love to do a lot of gardening when I can and this is a great way to save on bills. I could not hear the total price on it though. What is it you spent on all of it together?

  • By Doreen, November 21, 2013 @ 7:35 pm

    Hi, love your movie, i use a old sox or stocking to stop the leaves going into my tank.

  • By Elizabeth, November 21, 2013 @ 7:39 pm

    Great idea! We in the dry Kalahari desert wrestle with water problems daily.

  • By Don, November 30, 2013 @ 4:31 pm

    Explain how you get the air inside of the 55 gallon barrels out?

  • By Penny, January 3, 2014 @ 9:02 am

    Are the barrels vented at the top? I am curious how you avoid air vacuum problems or if there is a problem venting.

  • By v.e., January 3, 2014 @ 10:00 am

    I was wondering about the air in barrels as well. I know that it would add some pressure pushing it out but not sure how the water gets in.

  • By v.e., January 3, 2014 @ 10:02 am

    But a great idea. I think this is the one I’ll try to copy. My fingers got ahead of my brain on the last post. Good system.

  • By Thamsanqa Gerald Msikinya, January 3, 2014 @ 11:25 am

    I would like to use this at my place in Transkie we have a problem of water shortage in winter .,

  • By Nancy, January 4, 2014 @ 11:35 pm

    Cool Ideas ! Thanks for the pointers

  • By sherry, February 4, 2014 @ 2:07 pm

    You can mix some cyanne and water in a spray bottle and spray where ever you want to keep the bugs away.

  • By Tammi, June 1, 2017 @ 11:17 am

    I am in fact thankful to the owner of this web site who has shared this fantastic article aat at
    this place.

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