Saturday, February 9, 2013
Shane's amazingly simple greywater invention
We were lucky to move into a house where the previous owners had modified our laundry water to divert into a pipe into a bathtub outside. But our bathwater and shower water were wasted.
In Stillwater, everyone is on "tank water", which means that all our water is from the rain, caught and collected from the rooftops into storage tanks. We have a sink filter for our drinking water. So our home is essentially a "rainwater house". I think that's very cool and independent - except during the dry summer when there isn't enough water to water the garden. The rain doesn't fall to water the garden, and we aren't collecting more to just have alot to spray around. So if you reuse the water you've used to wash your laundry, and now - bathwater - you are using the same water twice. The plants definitely don't mind a little soap in the water - although we do use mild eco-brand soaps and laundry detergent. And I "hold the vinegar" (that definitely kills plants) in the laundry at this time. During the winter, it rains so much that the plants don't need watering.
Anyways, Shane rigged up a neat system which was just a lid which closed off the shower/bath pipe in which he'd drilled a hole, and glued an attachment for the hose into it. He also added silicon to aid in waterproofing. He cut some garden hose, attached it to the lid, which diverts the bathwater into a tub which I bucket to give life to my garden plants. But unless I want the water, the hose connects to a "holey" hose which has been placed along one of our gardens - so it waters the garden automatically after we pull out the plug from the bath. Of course, it is important that the outlet is lower than the bath to use gravity.