This page will be updated periodically with the latest news, facts, and tips on a variety of topics related to these important water storage and transportation vessels. From information on different types of barrels and tanks to recycling tips and best practices, we have everything you need to know.
Winterizing Your Rain Barrel
Now that its getting cold out and your garden is going dormant, it's time to winterize your rain barrel. You don't want the water in it to freeze and expand!
Start by draining your rain barrel. Be careful as a full rain barrel is heavy, a gallon of water weighs more than 8 lbs., so a full rain barrel can weigh over 400 lbs.
Disconnect it from your downspout, so that it can't fill and freeze. If your downspout convertor leaves a hole when disconnected, attach the winter cap to cover the hole.
Once empty, take the time to clean out the inside of your rain barrel. Add ¼ of a cup of distilled vinegar to a gallon of warm water with a teaspoon of a mild dishwashing detergent. Pour the solution into the rain barrel and swish it around with a mop or brush. Rinse it clean with water. This diluted solution is safe to empty onto your lawn.
Once clean and empty, you can store it for winter. Some people bring them into their garage or shed. Place your downspout convertor and hose in a place for safe-keeping. If your rain barrel is open, or open and screened on top, simply store it upside down so that it can't fill.
A gallon of water weighs about 8.34 pounds (3.78 kilograms). However, since gallons are a measure of volume rather than weight, the actual weight of a gallon of water will depend on temperature, surface gravity, height, and pressure.