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Although rainwater cannot normally be used for drinking water, it can be collected and used for watering the yard or, at a more sophisticated level, to supply household fittings and appliances such as toilets and washing machines.
The simplest way to harvest rainwater is to install a water barrel. Rain from the gutters runs through a downspout where a diverter channels water into the barrel.
Position the water barrel adjacent to a gutter downspout. Our barrel has a specially designed base that needs to be leveled when in position.
Place the barrel on the base and determine where to cut into the downspout. Most rain barrel manufacturers will supply a marking template.
Use a fine-toothed saw to cut through the downspout, following the guidelines as closely as possible.
Remove the cut section of the pipe and insert the main body of the diverter, using any adaptors that are required.
Use a hole-cutter bit on a standard drill to make a hole in the water barrel. Again, use a template to measure the correct position.
Excerpted from Do It Yourself Home Improvement
© Dorling Kindersley Limited 2009