Project: Install rain barrels
Capture water for your garden and keep our streams clean.
In our temperate climate, we rarely experience drought. To the contrary, our rainfall is generous, and in our dense urban/suburban environment, it can carry harmful pollutants into our waterways. Harvesting rain water with rain barrels under one or more of your downspouts provides an abundant source of water for your landscape, can help reduce your water bill, and protects our streams, rivers, and bay. Let your rain barrel drain into a conservation landscape or rain garden throughout a rain event for additional storm water and pollutant reduction.
Get a $200 rebate through the Montgomery County RainScapes program when you buy and install rain barrels that store at least 200 gallons of water.
If you live in Rockville, get a $1 per gallon rebate for installing a rain barrel over 55 gallons through the RainScapes Rewards Rebate Program.
Is rain barrel water safe to drink?
No. The water captured in a rain barrel carries dirt and impurities from your roof and downspouts. It should only be used for gardening purposes.
Won’t the water in a rain barrel be a breeding ground for mosquitoes?
No. If constructed properly with sealed gaskets and screening, mosquitoes are unlikely to be a problem. You can also add ‘mosquito dunks’ from your home and garden center to the rain barrel to control mosquito larvae in an environmentally friendly way.
How much rain will my barrel(s) collect?
One inch of rainfall is average for a typical rain event. This amount running off of 1,000 square feet of roof space equals 600 gallons of water. To estimate your roof space consider the bird’s eye view of your home. What is the length and width of your roof? Multiple the length by the width and divide by .6 for the number of gallons for a 1″ rainfall. Look at how your rainspouts are configured, though, to estimate what will flow into each barrel; the roof peak and any gables will divide the rainfall reaching any one barrel by half or less.