Every drop counts: 5 ways you can conserve water at home this monsoon
Lush green trees, colourful umbrellas, floral beds, and misty surroundings - these are some common sights we get to bask on during the onset of the monsoon every year. Not only is it a time when we get relieved of the scorching summer heat, but we also bid goodbye to water woes.
However, water is not a resource that can be taken for granted. Year after year, India has been staring at a water crisis characterised by groundwater depletion, contamination of rivers, and mismanagement of drinking water.
A child trying to drink water from a tap in India.
This monsoon, instead of letting rainwater clogging potholes and drainage systems, let’s join hands and work towards channelising and collecting it for future purposes. Rainwater harvesting is a simple yet effective way of conserving water, which can later be used for drinking or gardening.
From creating a rain garden to setting up a barrel and recharging borewells, YourStory lists five ways in which you can harvest rainwater at home.
Creating a splash block
A splash blocks can tackle the eroding force of water by collecting and storing it.
Image credit: Eric Weiss
A splash block is a rectangular device made of plastic or concrete that can be placed right below the pipe that carries rainwater from the rooftop of your house to the ground. This helps to divert rainwater away from the foundation of the structure. Besides, it helps to tackle the eroding force of water by collecting and storing it. Splash blocks are easily available in the market, and can also be made at home by moulding cement and masonry sand.
Gardening to the rescue
Rain gardens allow water to seep into the earth and recharge the ground water.
Image credit: Shutterstock
A rain garden is a landscape that can be created in a shallow terrain in your courtyard or right outside your house. From perennial shrubs, flowers, and mulch, anything can be planted in the garden. However, plants which tend to develop deep roots can be more effective because they have a greater capacity to absorb water.
This will allow rainwater to seep into the earth and recharge groundwater as well. Since a rain garden prevents stagnation of water, the chances of mosquito breeding are also minimal.
Setting up a barrel
A rain barrel is a traditional yet effective method to conserve water.
Image credit: Shutterstock
Using a rain barrel is one of the most effective and widely used ways to save water. You can use an old drum or a large plastic trash can for this. The barrel needs to be positioned right below the pipe through which rainwater from the verandah or rooftop is likely to flow. In order to prevent mosquito breeding, a screen or a mesh can be placed over the barrel after collecting the water. Adding a few droplets of oil on the surface is also a good way to prevent the formation of larvae.
Using a rain saucer
Rain saucers can collect water free from impurities.
Image credit: Home Water Harvesting
Rain saucers can amass water without hassle straight from the sky. All you need is a small storage container, two funnels, and some PVC pipes. The funnels need to be connected through the pipes to the repository. This easy-to-deploy system looks like an upside-down umbrella. Since this set up is not exposed to contaminated sources, the water collected is likely to be clean and can also be used for drinking.
Surface runoff can be used to recharge borewells.
Image credit: Development Logics
While borewells are generally used to extract water from the ground, it can also be used to recharge groundwater. All you have to do for this is build a recharge pit. Most often than not, a recharge pit is one meter in diameter and at least six meters deep. It has to be drilled alongside a pipe with perforations covered with a net in order to filter out the impurities. This lets the surface water flowing as run off into the water table, and minimises the chances of experiencing water scarcity during summer.