I remember a time when you couldn't buy a rain barrel anywhere. If you wanted to collect rain water you had to buy a plain barrel with some pvc parts and make it yourself. Now you can buy them everywhere, in many shapes and colors. You can buy a plastic barrel that looks like an old fashioned wood barrel. You can buy one that looks like a ceramic pot. You can even get a rain barrel that resembles a giant rock!
Why use a rain barrel? There are two good reasons. For one, it takes a lot of water to quench even a small lawn and that can really jack up your water bill. The other reason is that plants grow better with rain water because tap water contains chlorine which inhibits growth.
Usually rain barrels are installed close to the house underneath a length of gutter. The downspout is cut short and diverted to the top of the barrel so that the water from the gutter can accumulate in the barrel.
If you are going to attach a hose to your barrel you need to have it elevated. The higher the barrel the stronger the water pressure will be. You will need as much pressure as you can get if you are going to use the water to keep a lawn green.
Watering plants and lawns take a lot of water, as a result some homes have multiple barrels, situated on every corner of the house. Some people will even stack one barrel onto another.
Just one container will help you to save water. Rain barrels are considered to be a great water conservation tool.