Thursday, April 14, 2011

the other shoe falls

Ok, so remember back 24 hours ago when we came home to a pile of boxes we weren't expecting, and were glad that nothing bigger arrived...?

Well, something bigger arrived. Fortunately, it wasn't the 3,000 gallon cistern, which is slightly larger than our car. Today's arrival is a pre-assembled purification skid. It's got a pump and three filters - a string filter, an ultraviolet light and a charcoal filter. The rainwater will enter through the pump (lower right) and exit after passing through the carbon filter (to the left).

It's worth noting that water conservation is also a form of energy conservation. One of our region's biggest users of electricity is our water utility, which needs copious amounts of energy to purify and pump water that's clean enough to drink, but mostly gets used to irrigate lawns, flush toilets and wash cars. By cutting our use of municipal water by two thirds (half through rainwater harvesting, half through graywater use), we'll further reduce our energy footprint.

Lydia, official daughter of tin box, appears happy, but only because she doesn't yet know that we're keeping the skid in her room until the new house is ready...


  1. Is this water to drink Dave?

  2. Yes, Lucy, these filters are for drinking water. We think that we'll be able to reduce our use of municipal water by two thirds if we filter rainwater to drink, and filter graywater (from tubs and showers) to use as toilet flush water.

    Water is still cheap in South Florida, so we're not expecting this to pay for itself (unlike our solar panels). But it's not that expensive to do, and it seems like a technique we ought to understand better.