Friday, November 21, 2008

Rainwater harvesting!

Today we had our new rainwater harvesting system installed.  You can see the before and after shots above.  First, we had the support wall built (second photo).  This wall was actually less for support than to raise the tank high enough to use gravity to water our raised planters.  The tank itself holds 250 gallons (and weighs one ton when full!).  It is a special tank from Australia that has a slim profile (look closely: it is not circular) which suits our tiny courtyard well - total footprint is 10 s.f.  The roof area that drains in to the tank is 468 s.f. and will fill the tank in a 1" rainfall.  In theory, we get enough rainfall each year to fill the tank about 11 times but this assumes that we completely empty the tank between each rain.  The black pipe in the corner is the overflow pipe that will drain any excess rainfall to the street (which is where ALL of our current rainwater ends up).  This system is essentially just a fancy bucket put under our downspouts - a brilliant concept in the desert!  Now we're just praying for rain...

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