I started my water collection last year with collecting water off of our chicken coop to use for watering the chickens. You can read about that here. I put it in last May and never had to water the chickens again until we started having freezing temperatures. Unfortunately one night I forgot to empty the nipple water line in the winter and the pvc pipe froze and burst. But it worked out ok because I got to rethink my chicken waterer and try something new. The nipple waters worked fine but a lot of water was wasted by the chickens because they did not catch it all when getting a drink and therefore it kept the ground constantly wet under the water line. This time I decided to go with a pan type waterer that uses a float system to keep the bowl full. I was able to connect it to my existing 55 gallon barrel set up. So far it is working great and I like it much better than the nipple waterers.
For my garden water collection, I am collecting water off of my shop roof which borders the garden. It is a really big roof so it will collect a lot of water which will be great for watering my garden. I decided to go with IBC containers because they are relatively cheap and easy to find. I bought two 275 gallon containers so I would have 550 gallons total. I read lots of posts online about different set ups and watched lots of videos until I had an idea of how I wanted to set it up. Unfortunately the shop roof line comes down kind of low so I was not able to do it exactly like I wanted but I was still able to make it work. I had hoped to raise the containers up to increase the water pressure but was only able to raise them 18-20 inches. I had to build really sturdy supports because that much water weighs over 2 tons. I connected the two containers with PVC pipes and then have an outlet that I can hook up my water hose to. I decided to cover the containers in black plastic to prevent algae growth. And I have it so when the containers are full and I can switch the pipe to have the water empty out into the pasture instead of just overflowing right next to the building. I plan to eventually have this run in to a livestock water trough. Our first rain since I finished the set up was last night and we got 1.5 inches which was enough to fill them up. I was really happy that it worked out. I hooked up the water hose and there is enough pressure to push the water out of the nozzle on the setting we use for gentle watering. I hope to set up another system like this one sometime to use for watering our fruit trees.
|Here is what it looks like. It is not pretty but luckily it is behind the shop.|
|I connected the two containers with a pvc pipe that connects to their outlets. The gutter only empties into one container but both of them will fill together having them hooked up this way.|
|Here is my outlet hooked up to the water hose|