Rainwater Harvesting may seem like a fairly novel concept, however, it’s important to bear in mind that households in rural areas have been collecting and using rainwater (or “soft” water) for household tasks such as washing clothes, boots and household equipment for centuries. The term “Rainwater Harvesting” simply refers to the collection of rainwater with a view to deriving the maximum benefit from it, for both the user and for the environment.
In the UK, commercial and domestic customers already pay water rates meaning that there is a clear benefit in using rainwater to reduce your mains water consumption. In Ireland, commercial entities and domestic customers already pay water rates in many counties. In the future, it is likely that domestic consumption will be metered across the country, meaning that there will be clear savings to be gained by conserving rainwater for use for some of the household purposes outlined above, as well as playing your part in reducing water consumption and protecting the environment.
Rainwater – Practical uses
In the modern day home, whether your home is situated in an urban, suburban or rural environment, rainwater can be used for everyday tasks such as watering flowers, the garden, washing the car or household equipment. Rainwater Harvesters can be situated overground or underground, and can be fully integrated into the plumbing system of your home or commercial property, to provide water for flushing toilets, washing clothes or outside taps. Typically there is a mains backup for integrated Rainwater storage systems, so that when the water level falls below a certain point, the mains water supply will take over.
Underground Rainwater Harvester systems come equipped with a large underground storage tank which can either pump rainwater directly to where it is needed in the building, or supply a smaller storage tank located in the attic area, which facilitates a gravity feed throughout the building.