But they do need a little bit of attention if they’re going to perform at optimum levels. This is especially true when there are so many mosquitoes around. Handle your rain barrel incorrectly and it can become just another breeding ground.
Safety starts with your barrel’s filter screen, if you have one. You should check the screen at least once a month to make sure that it’s still securely fastened to your rain barrel. If the screen has holes then you need to replace it.
Industrial nylon gutter guards are a good addition to a rain barrel system. Gutter guards will help you reduce stress on your filter screen. You get cleaner water flowing throughout the rain water collection system.
Obviously it’s important to keep the gutter portion of that system as clean as possible. If your gutters are nasty then your rain water will be nasty too, and you’ll get less than you could have.
It’s also important to actually use your rainwater. Store it if you need to, but leave room for the next rain fall.
This means you should pay close attention to your rain barrel during periods of heavy rainfall!
Are you going on vacation? Then open the spigots on your barrel. At that point it will function like just another downspout. The last thing you want to do is return home to a rain barrel that is overflowing. That’s a recipe for standing water that pools right next to your foundation.
If you find you just don’t have the time to keep the rain barrel in regular use then it’s not the best solution for you. Consider a rain garden instead.
Finally, you should always inspect the interior of your rain barrel for signs of algae. Yes, it’s grey water, and yes, you never planned to drink it in the first place. But you don’t want to water your plants with algae-infested water either.
If you see algae, scrub the interior of your rain barrel down with a little bit of apple cider vinegar. If you haven’t bought your rain barrel yet you can also combat algae by choosing a black one, like this recycled plastic rain barrel from RainwaterSolutions.com.
Rain barrels don’t have to be super labor intensive, but it is good to stay on top of their unique needs.
We install seamless aluminum gutters in Wesley Chapel, Brandon, and the rest of the Tampa Bay Metro area. We also install the gutter guards that can help you maintain a clean rain water catchment system. Contact us for a free estimate!