Explained: Rainwater Harvesting {Methods, Benefits}

Did you ever experience a day without water? It’s so tough that we can’t even imagine a day sans water in our daily life. One of the main reasons for the existence of life on this planet is undoubtedly water. As we rely on water to the maximum extent for our existence, it’s equally important to save such a precious source. One of the best sources of water is rainwater. It is truly rare to get fresh and clean water all the time. Despite one-third of our planet is covered with water, it is not possible to consume saltwater directly. The desalination process is required to turn saltwater into something that can be consumed. However, it’s an expensive method. Rainwater Harvesting is one of the best ways to evade the problem of water scarcity by conserving water. This guide gives you an in-depth insight into the Rainwater Harvesting system, methods of harvesting rainwater, pros, and cons. Have a glimpse!

What is Rainwater Harvesting?

Rainwater Harvesting is the most effective process of preserving rainwater by collecting and storing rain instead of letting it runoff. Rainwater can be accumulated while running off from rooftops during monsoon and storing it for further use in the dry season. The collected water can be re-used whenever drought situations occur. The rainwater harvesting system has been practiced across various metropolitan cities at a rapid pace due to water scarcity. Instead of letting the rainwater flow off into drains and get wasted, one can preserve it through rainwater harvesting. 

Water is highly essential in our day to day lives for drinking, cooking, bathing, cleaning, and more. There are few reports from popular agencies that several countries have been facing a huge water scarcity problem. If this continues, one must strive hard to get fresh water at least for drinking purposes in the future. Hence, it’s highly important to bring awareness among people of harvesting rainwater. To handle the crisis of water scarcity globally, one of the economical techniques is rainwater harvesting. This guide gives you a complete understanding of the unique techniques that are implemented to preserve rainwater without going waste. Check it out!

Significance of Rainwater Harvesting

By now, you might have understood what is rainwater harvesting. It’s also necessary to understand the importance of harvesting rainwater. What’s the need for harvesting rainwater? One of the main reasons behind harvesting the rainwater is to conserve water to prevent scarcity. As water scarcity has become the major concern in the current epoch, it can be resolved through this harvesting technique. By accumulating rainwater properly, it can become an effective way to prevent water crisis problems globally. During monsoon, it becomes easy to begin harvesting the rainwater. Not just humans but also animals face water scarcity problems during the summer season. 

By preserving the rainwater during monsoon, it may not become a problem in the remaining seasons. Moreover, rainwater is free of cost and it can be further gathered, stored, and used for various purposes. The significance of rainwater harvesting is that it isn’t constrained to a specific family but it can be utilized by the whole city. The importance of harvesting rainwater is that one can store the collected water for utilizing it in the future. Moreover, the rainwater when harvested from the rooftops and other places, it diminishes soil erosion.

Methods of Rainwater Harvesting

There are different methods of rainwater harvesting that are implemented across various regions. Despite having copious techniques, the most common methods will be discussed in this post. 

1. Surface Runoff Harvesting

Mostly, this method will be followed in urban locations. In such areas, rainwater flows across the surface runoff. By capturing the runoff, it can be utilized in recharging aquifers or the restoring groundwater level through various methods. Rather than letting the rainwater flow into the drains or become wasted, it can be utilized by storing through this method. In this method, water can be accumulated and stored in tanks, ponds, reservoirs, and more. The stored water in any of these places can be further utilized for irrigation, farming, and other domestic needs.

2. Rooftop Rainwater Harvesting

Rooftop Rainwater Harvesting, on the other hand, is usually implemented in schools, apartments, and individual residences. To execute this method, it is important to obstruct the rainwater and let it flow towards a specific direction. One can collect the rainwater through pipes and direct it towards a tank or a bucket. In urban locations, people use PVC pipes for directing rainwater into the storage tanks. 

Normally, people use a bucket or a large container beneath the rooftop to collect the rainwater during monsoon. The rainwater that’s flown initially comprises dust particles, insects, and other debris that usually settles on the roof. It is advisable to divert the initial flow of rainwater and collect it later. 

Ways to Use Rooftop Rainwater Harvesting

Besides the main common methods of rainwater harvesting, there are specific ways to access rooftop rainwater harvesting. We furnished some of the significant methods that are used to execute rooftop rainwater harvesting. Check it out!

Storage Tanks

The storage of rainwater collected from the rooftop of a building is highly important. That particular water can be stored in a tank. Make sure that the tank is designed depending on the amount of rainfall, catchment provision, and other requisites of water. The rainwater harvesting tank must be of a specific size for fulfilling the water conservation purposes. Usually, these tanks are available in different sizes and materials. After the accumulation of rainwater in specific storage tanks, you need to take the utmost care for maintenance. Ensure you keep the water clean using chlorine for a long time to evade water-borne diseases.

Recharging Aquifers

By recharging the aquifers, one can store the rainwater in the ground instead of getting drained. For that, you can implement a few recharging techniques through dug wells, borewells, percolation tanks, trenches, and more.

Dug Wells Recharge

Another method of accessing rooftop rainwater harvesting is dug wells recharge. The rainwater that flows from the rooftop can be diverted into dug wells after getting through the filtration bed. It is essential to clean the dug well frequently to increase the recharge level. 

Borewell Recharging

Rainwater flown from the rooftop can be diverted through drainpipes to any filtration tank. Further, the water can be diverted to borewells. This eventually recharges deep aquifers. The structure of the borewell depends on the rainfall intensity, catchment location, and the recharge level.

Recharging Trenches

It is another method of storing the rainwater flown from the rooftop. A recharge trench can be used to store rainwater in the trench. Based on the water runoff, you can select the length of the trench. After making a recharge trench on the surface, it can be refilled using brickbats, boulders, pebbles, and other porous media. Mostly, people consider this method of rainwater harvesting in parks, drains on roads, small houses, and other small places.

These are some of the significant ways to access rooftop rainwater harvesting that evades water scarcity problems in the future. 

Benefits of Rainwater Harvesting

Is rainwater harvesting cost-effective? Most people may not be aware of the benefits of the unique rainwater harvesting system. There are plenty of advantages one can witness through this process of harvesting rainwater. In this post, we listed the key benefits of rainwater harvesting. Check it out!

1. For Drinking  & Cleaning

  • Rainwater can be used for various purposes such as irrigation, drinking after processing, and other indoor and outdoor uses. 
  • Apart from drinking water, rainwater can also be used for cleaning, washing, and refilling the swimming pool, etc. 
  • All these can be done by setting up a rainwater harvesting tank.
  • One can easily implement the rainwater harvesting system even in cities especially in residences, parks, workplaces, temples, and more.

2. Cost-Effective

  • Rainwater harvesting is one of the affordable ways to store rainwater in different tanks and others. 
  • As we get rain in monsoon for free, you don’t need to spend any money on collecting and storing it.

3. Environmental Gains

  • By harvesting rainwater, there are copious benefits to the environment. 
  • By eliminating the rainwater runoff, it lessens the risk of polluting surface water due to fertilizers, pesticides, etc. 
  • Harvesting rainwater turns out to become the best water source for plants and irrigation purposes. 
  • The rainwater doesn’t comprise any sort of chemicals like chlorine and fluoride like in the municipal water.

4. Diminishes Energy Consumption

  • Besides providing the advantage of water conservation, rainwater harvesting also aids in diminishing energy consumption within a community.
  • For treating and pumping municipal water, it needs more energy. 
  • After harvesting the rainwater, one can replace the municipal water with rainwater. This eventually reduces the energy charges that a family may get due to the usage of municipal water.

5. Reduces Water Bill

  • Another vital benefit of rainwater harvesting is that it lessens the water bill by using rainwater instead of municipal water.

6. Helps for Irrigation Uses

  • One can use rainwater for various irrigation purposes in the field of farming. 
  • If there is no water source available in some areas, rainwater is the major source.

7. Prevents Flooding

  • In urban areas, there is a risk of flooding because of excess rainwater flow. 
  • By collecting and storing the rainwater, it evades flooding.

8. Increases Groundwater level

  • Is rainwater harvesting worth it? If you think so, you may be mistaken. It serves copious purposes by enhancing the groundwater level. 
  • Through rainwater harvesting, it restores the level of groundwater across different areas. 

Limitations to Rainwater Harvesting

Are there any downsides to rainwater harvesting? You may be wondering whether there are any disadvantages to rainwater harvesting. Check it out!

  • If you don’t maintain the stored rainwater upon harvesting, it may lead to some issues. It’s not just enough to harvest the rainwater but also to strive hard to maintain it frequently.
  • We use various methods for harvesting rainwater. During the installation process, one must take the help of experts if you are a beginner. If you are planning to install the harvesting set up all by yourself, you need some technical proficiency.
  • Sometimes, people may confront storage issues while trying to execute the rainwater harvesting system.
  • Due to improper installation, it leads to dangerous waterborne diseases. It could happen because of the deposition of mosquitoes in the rainwater harvesting tank.

The Bottom Line

That’s all! This is everything you need to know about rainwater harvesting. In this current era, it’s highly important to save the rainwater to evade global warming and other drought conditions. By following proper rainwater harvesting methods, one can evade the critical conditions globally. We hope this guide has given adequate information about harvesting the rainwater through various methods. For more doubts, just ask us in the comments space. Stay tuned to this website for more methods to implement rainwater harvesting. 

Leave a Comment