Rain barrels are containers that are connected to existing downspouts and collect rainwater from rooftops storing it for later use. The barrels can be made of plastic or wood and can come in various colors or designs. Rain barrels can vary in size but must be at least 55 gallons, and more than one barrel can be used to increase capacity.
Rain Barrel Training
Gaithersburg residents are eligible to attend informational workshops offered by Montgomery County and the City of Rockville, space permitting. The workshops provide information on how to install and maintain rain barrels, and more information about upcoming workshops can be found at Montgomery County RainScapes or City of Rockville RainScapes Rewards.
Rain Barrel Rebates
The City of Gaithersburg is offering rebates to single family residential property owners who install rain barrels on their property. Rebates will be in the amount of $50 per barrel with a maximum of four barrels per household but applications must be pre-approved before installation.
Rain barrel projects completed prior to March 1, 2009 are not eligible. Complete eligibility requirements and design criteria are included in the rebate application.
NOTE: These forms are provided in PDF format and can be viewed with the Adobe Acrobat Reader. This format will enable you to view the document as it appears in print. If you do not already have the Adobe Acrobat Reader installed follow the link above to Adobe's free download area.
Rain Barrel Benefits
By installing a rain barrel at your home you will:
- Reduce flooding in your yard or basement. Rain barrels collect water that could otherwise contribute to the flooding of your property. The water collected can be used to water plants or can be released slowly allowing it to sink into the ground.
- Provide your plants with better water. Unlike treated water, which is "softened" with dissolved minerals, rainwater is naturally soft. The water stored in a rain barrel is better than municipal water for washing cars and watering indoor or outdoor plants.
- Save money and water. Instead of water from the tap or faucet, you can use the water you have saved to keep your home landscaping healthy and growing through the summer. You will also reduce your municipal water bill.
- Protect the Chesapeake Bay. Water stored in your rain barrel is water that will not empty into local streams. By decreasing the volume of storm runoff, rain barrels also help moderate stream erosion and the resulting pollution that is impairing the Chesapeake Bay
Rain Barrel Information and Resources
If you were unable to attend the free workshops held in the spring or are unable to attend the free workshops this summer, you can download the presentation and handouts below: