Rainwater harvesting systems collect rain, typically from your roof, and store it in a large tank for future use. The water can be used for many of your household's water needs, like watering your lawn. If the tank is connected to your home's plumbing system, you can even use it to flush your toilets. Why bother getting one of these systems? Here are four reasons to install a rainwater harvesting system.
To help conserve water
Water is a renewable resource, so many people don't see the point of trying to conserve water. However, once water has been used and dirtied, it needs to be processed by water treatment plants. Processing the water requires a lot of energy, as does transporting the newly clean water to all of the people that need it.
By using harvested rainwater instead of municipal water for some of your household's water needs, you are helping to take the strain off of water treatment and water transport systems.
To lower your water bill
Using rainwater in the place of municipal water doesn't just help to conserve water, it can also lower your water bill. Generally, people with rainwater recovery systems can lower their water usage by between 35% and 40%, so your bill will drop as well. You'll save even more in rainy months: you can reduce your water usage by as much as 55% in periods of heavy rainfall.
The exact dollar value of your savings will vary based on how your municipality calculates your water bill, but by using significantly less water, you're guaranteed to receive a lower water bill. While some may argue that the cost of installing the system negates the savings associated with using less water, this isn't always true as many areas offer tax credits to help you pay for your system.
To be prepared for droughts
Many drought-prone states encourage their residents to collect rainwater to help take the strain off the water system. They do this because most of the water that falls as rain is lost. In cities, only 15% of rainwater is absorbed into the ground, while the rest is lost to either evaporation or runoff. When an area is hit hard by a drought, losing 85% of rainwater is a serious problem.
If you have a rainwater harvesting system, you can collect the water that would've been lost, and if a drought occurs, you'll be prepared. In an area that receives 24 inches of rain per year, like San Francisco, a family of four could collect more than four months of water from their rainwater harvesting system.
To avoid municipal water restrictions
Due to droughts, many municipalities are placing restrictions on water usage. In some areas, the restrictions are fairly mild and only restrict which days you can water your lawn, but in other areas, the restrictions are severe. For example, in some parts of California, residents must cut their water usage by more than one-third, a policy that can prevent you from flushing your toilet or running your dishwasher. If you rely on municipal water, you have no choice to comply, but if you rely on rainwater, no one can tell you how to use it.
If you have a tank full of rainwater, you'll be able to continue flushing your toilet and washing your laundry. If you have enough water stashed, you can even continue watering your lawn.
Rainwater harvesting systems can benefit you in many ways. Installing one of these systems helps you conserve water, lower your water bill, get ready for droughts, and avoid suffering from municipal water restrictions. If you want to install one of these systems, contact a plumber. Companies like A Absolute Plumbing & Heating may be able to meet your needs.