XXIII. Rainbarrels

  1. Introduction
    Rain barrels are recommended as a useful tool in capturing and recycling rooftop rainwater runoff.
  2. General Requirements
    1. Approval Process. An approved GHI rain barrel request form  is required for installation. Members must also sign a statement of maintenance responsibility prior to installation approval. Staff will inspect and approve the final installation of all rain barrels. If a rain barrel does not pass final inspection, the member must correct any deficiencies or remove the barrel.
    2. Rain Barrel Minimum Performance Criteria
      1. Barrel overflow. Rain barrels systems must be designed and installed with bypass, so excess water volume is directed away from the buildings. The overflow discharge pipe on the barrel must be at least 1 1/2" diameter.
      2. Mosquito prevention. Barrels must be designed to prevent mosquitoes from entering and prevent drowning risks for children and pets.
      3. Other design features. Barrels must have an outflow valve for extracting water from the barrel. The valve must be sized to fit a normal garden hose and have a threaded or molded point of valve attachment to prevent leakage.
      4. Barrel foundation. Rain barrels systems must be installed on a solid, level surface, such as concrete or paver block footing, to prevent leaning or tipping.
      5. Downspout connection. Existing downspout must be modified to route entire flow into the rain barrel or overflow back to the downspout,  Flexible plastic downspout connectors are not permitted.
      6. Color. If desired, rain barrels may be painted to match exterior color of the unit.  paint must be appropriate to the material of the rain barrel(s).  Maintenance of paint is member's responsibility.
  3. Location and Installation
    1. Barrel location. GHI Staff approval is required for all rain barrel system location,
    2. Shared downspouts.  Consent from the adjoining neighbor is required for rain barrel installation on a shared downspout.
    3. Screening. Check with GHI Technical Services before installing any type of screening.
    4. Installation. GHI can provide a Fee-for Service rate for installation.  If a member elects to install a rain barrel system without GHI assistance final installation must meet minimum criteria described above and must be inspected and approved by GHI Staff.
    5. End-of-use or change of owner considerations.
      1. Barrel Removal. Since downspouts are a GHI responsibility, the member will bear cost of barrel removal and replacement of downspouts if they wish to remove a rain barrel system. GHI can provide a Fee-For-Service rate to remove rain barrel systems and restore downspouts.
      2. Resale. At the time of resale of a unit with an installed barrel system, the prospective new member will be educated about the rain barrel system and given the opportunity to accept the barrel and agree to its proper use, and sign a statement of rainbarrel responsibility. If the prospective member does not desire the barrel, then the rainbarrel must be removed at the expense of the departing member.
  4. Maintenance
    1. Members are responsible for the maintenance of rain barrel systems.
    2. Member must sign a Rain Barrel Maintenance Agreement prior to installation, or when accepting responsibility for a previously installed rain barrel.
    3. Routine member responsibilities for rain barrel maintenance include:
      1. Cleaning leaf filters on a monthly basis or as needed.
      2. Emptying the barrel and opening all valves to winterize.
      3. Annual inspection of valves, hoses, and barrel for proper operation.
    4. Maintenance deficiencies. If a member does not keep the rain barrel system in compliance, GHI may service the barrel and charge the member a Fee-For-Service maintenance fee.  If a  member exhibits chronic maintenance problems with their barrel, GHI reserves the right to remove the barrel and charge the member a Fee-For-Service barrel removal charge, including the restoration of the downspout.