Harvesting rainwater and separating the first dirty rainwaters, washing the roofs, from the clean following ones. Here is a simple and efficient method based on a T-shaped pipe and a floating ball!
Rainwater is fresh water that we can almost drink (depending on regions and local pollution). It is interesting to harvest rainwater for various domestic uses : sanitation facilities (shower, toilets), watering gardens, ... When filtered, it can also be used for drinking.
An ingenious system of rainwater harvest has been implemented in Desde Oriente, at Punte de Lobos in Chile. In this place, there is a house where a bunch of inventions are tested in order to become self-sufficient and reduce one's environmental impact. There, all roofs are fitted with a gutter that allows to collect rainwater and direct it to a tank where it will be stored.The issue lies in the fact that the first liters of rainwater wash the roofs from its accumulated dust, dead leaves and dirt. The simple and efficient tip is to separate these first dirty liters from the next thanks to a T-shaped pipe and a floating ball. This methods prevents the leaves, dirt and particles to clog the smaller piping and filters for clean water.
PVC pipes of different diameters, bends, junctions, T-shaped pipe
a 50 liters container
A ping-pong ball
Drill, drill bits
Saw or angle grinder
Personal protective equipment
The pipe leading rain waters to the tank (1) comes horizontally and splits in a T :
The first 50 liters that washed the roof, collected in the container (2) can be used to water the garden.
Thanks to Jorge, Rodrigo and Sean for welcoming us at DesdeOriente!
Follow Jorge's project at DesdeOrient, in Punta de Lobos, Chile on Instagram "desdeorientepuntadelobos" or desdeoriente.cl.
The next step is to also create a self-sufficient place in water and energy in the center of Santiago in order to prove it is also possible in a town! Stay tuned!
Hydraulic system : http://lowtechlab.org/wiki/Système_hydraulique_global_d%27une_habitation
Electrical system :
We are two French students exploring low technologies in South America. Do not hesitate to follow our adventure here : https://www.facebook.com/LAtelierLowTech/