Frequently Asked Questions: Irrigation & Landscape: Rainwater Harvesting

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What do I need to do for site preparation?

Water is heavy, 8 lbs per gallon. Your barrel or tank should be on a solid and level surface. On ground, make sure the earth is firm and free of any sharp protrusions such as rocks, tree roots, etc.

Barrels - If you set the barrel up on something such as a base of concrete blocks, you can easily attach your hose to the faucet.

Tanks - Their larger footprint makes a smooth & level surface very important. A good method is to lay down a layer of pea gravel, tamp it, and then cover that with a layer of tamped sand.

Are aboveground and underground tanks interchangeable?

No. Above ground tanks are opaque to inhibit algae formation in the water and their sides are not designed to withstand underground pressures. Underground tanks are ribbed to withstand below grade hydrostatic pressure, but their translucent material is not designed for sunlight exposure.

Can I use an underground rainwater tank for septic or vice versa?

No. It is not allowed by building code, and the two have different design factors that make them non-interchangeable.

Can I water animals from my rain barrel or tank?

Yes, all our barrels and tanks are FDA approved for potable water storage. Just use the same cleanliness standards you normally would use for water for your animals.

What is the the air vent on above ground tanks for?

Sunlight will heat both the water and air in your tank and they expand as they heat up. The vent lets air escape so the tank doesn't puff up like a balloon.