Do you have Rainwater Collection Questions? We have answers!
We have answered the most common questions below, but please contact us by phone or email if you need more information:
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Return on Investment
I’ve heard that rain water systems have a large return on investment. How?
Here are a few things that explain the ROI on a typical Rainwater Harvesting System:
First, there is no sales tax on rain water harvesting equipment so the price we quote you is the price you pay – no extra money to cover sales tax.
Next, your home instantly increases in value with a rain water harvesting system.
Finally, with the standard FDC (Fire Dept. Connection) valve we install on all galvanized tanks, you will see a significant reduction in your home owners insurance which, over several years, will pay for the rain water harvesting system. This connection will allow your tank to become dual purpose and will serve as an onsite fire suppression system to protect your home.
Why is rain water better than well water?
There are many benefits of rain water. Rain water tastes better. It is always lower in sediment which means no need for a softener (and all that salt) and no more crusty appliances scaled from the hard water of the well. Also, more and more frequently, ground water sources are seeing higher levels of contamination from point and non-point source pollution. Check out this KXAN report on the potential dangers of well water.
Finally, rain water harvesting equipment is easily accessed (not several hundred feet underground) which makes repairs and maintenance much easier to perform. Also, because the water is so free of sediment, the equipment is less likely to need repair or maintenance in the first place.
What about gutters?
Glad you asked! We are the only rain water harvesting company in our area that offers a complete package that includes custom color matched seamless gutters as a standard part of our installations. No need to deal with multiple companies, we are your one stop shop.
What size system do I need?
First, you need to look at your collection area (roof size). How much rain can you collect off your roof? Are all the appropriate eaves guttered? Are you maximizing the potential rain collection?
The first component in this formula is dependent on properly sized gutters.
For potable systems, you will need a metal, tile, or TPO roof. Rain runs quickly off a metal roof, so having 6″ gutters with screens will ensure you capture the most water and least debris during a rain event.
Next is the collection surface.
Each square foot of collection surface (your roof) will capture .65 gallons per 1” of rain that falls. So, for example, a 3,000 square foot roof will capture 1,950 gallons of water with 1” of rain.
1″ rainfall event:
3000 Roof area (sf) x .65 = 1950 gallons
Here in the eastern hill country we average about 35 inches of rain per year, so in an average year you would collect 68,250 gallons of water that year.
Finally, it’s about storage.
If you have a large rainfall event, you want to have the extra capacity to store that extra water for use when the rain isn’t falling, which will happen. We always optimize storage to fit with your collection area.
So, what size system do I need?
Our most popular size systems are 18,800 gallons, 24,555 gallons, and 31,078 gallons. However, what works for one family might not work for the next.
The above factors will determine how much water you can collect. The next thing to look at is your usage. We will need to know the number of people in your household as well as your typical usage habits.
We at RainKeepers are committed to make sure you have access to the best quality water possible. Contact us today for a consultation so we can design the perfect system for you and your family.
Call us today! +1 (512) 856-4626
or email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
What is a first flush system and do you need one?
A first flush system can be as simple as a PVC pipe that branches off of your main collecting downspout (from the gutter), or it can be an entire tank. Check out this page for a detailed explanation of the “diverter” version of this system which is more commonly found on smaller systems.
A second option is a small tank (approx 275 gallons) that collects the initial runoff during a rain event and allows debris and sediment to settle at the bottom while the remainder of the water can enter the main collection tank. This first flush tank should be emptied periodically, and this makes a great source of water for landscape irrigation purposes.
The images below show a first flush tank installed with a 16,000 gallon potable system.
Do you need a first flush system?
With all of our potable (safe to drink) systems, we require fine mesh leaf guards on top of the gutters. We also offer leaf eaters for the downspouts to add a second layer of filtration of debris. Next, there is a mesh basket that adds a third layer of protection. Then, once the water leaves the tank, it goes thru a 3 stage sediment and charcoal filter system followed by a UV light before entering the home.
The installation of a first flush system is strictly up to you. It can add to the expense of a system, but if you like having the added benefit of a separate 275 gallon tank for landscape irrigation, it may be right for you.
We are happy to help you with these and any other questions – please contact us today to learn more.
How Much Does a Rainwater Harvesting System Cost?
A Rainwater Harvesting System’s cost varies depending on a number of factors including but not limited to:
- Topography of land where tank will sit
- Soil/rock type for trenching
- Size and type of pad for tank (concrete vs gravel)
- Length of runs for pipe between tank and house
However, a small system with a polyethylene tank (up to 5000 gallons) may cost as little as $12,500 and a large system with a 30,000 gallon galvanized steel tank with a 10 degree roof may cost as much as $37,000.
If you are interested in a potable (safe to drink) system that will supply your entire home, you will likely need a minimum of 13,000 gallons, but a more common size is 24,555 gallons. These systems will require a pump and a filtration system as well as underground trunk lines and pressurized lines feeding back into the home.
If you are only interested in collecting rainwater for irrigation purposes, you can use a much smaller system. These systems do no require a pump or filtration, and can be situated directly underneath the gutter downspouts. This will eliminate potentially costly trenching.