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Using a Rain Barrel to Collect Condensate From Your Air Conditioner!

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The a/c causes lots of condensation that just runs out onto the ground. From what I've read, condensate water from the a/c is 99% pure clear water, no chemicals, just a bit of dust! Why not catch it and use it? We did just that! Here's how we did it.
It took right at a full week to gather a barrel full of water. That's approximately 55 gallons of water that would have otherwise jut gone onto the ground. Now we use it to water all the little plants and the garden!
Time: 45 Minutes Cost: $30.00 Difficulty: Easy
  • rain barrel air conditioner condensation solution, diy, hvac, repurposing upcycling
This is our final product and it works perfectly! Why didn't we think of this a long time ago? We don't know, but I'm glad my honey decided he wanted to try and catch the dripping water.
  • rain barrel air conditioner condensation solution, diy, hvac, repurposing upcycling
These barrels are actually all one piece, no lid to take off so you can get to the inside. Using a reciprocating saw, cut the "lid" off. As you can see, this barrel was nasty! After it was open, it got a good scrubbing with soap and water.
  • rain barrel air conditioner condensation solution, diy, hvac, repurposing upcycling
You can get the the whole story and a list of supplies on our blog and then just follow the step by step directions for installing the spigot. Remember to add the Teflon tape to the spigot for a better seal.
  • rain barrel air conditioner condensation solution, diy, hvac, repurposing upcycling
We used a piece of screening to filter out any unwanted yuck into our water barrel.
  • rain barrel air conditioner condensation solution, diy, hvac, repurposing upcycling
Next, my honey used the hole saw again and made some drain holes in the lid just in case it rained, the barrel would catch the water. Double duty!
  • rain barrel air conditioner condensation solution, diy, hvac, repurposing upcycling
The lid is actually turned upside down. It makes a perfectly snug fit to hold the screen in place.
  • rain barrel air conditioner condensation solution, diy, hvac, repurposing upcycling
To raise the barrel off the ground, my honey built a stand using left over 2x4s, 4x4s and some more of our fence pickets. That's another post though! The stand was necessary so we could get a water can under the spigot to use the water we'd gathered.

To see more: http://ourcloverhouse.blogspot.com/2014/07/using-rain-barrel-to-collect-condensate.html

Got a question about this project?

  • Nancy Merrell
    Nancy Merrell Hixson, TN

    We have been using it to water our plants for several years never killed any plants,so I agree with R.Adam Q get a test kit.

  • Jay Taylor
    Jay Taylor Santa Ana, CA

    Very innovative,all should follow this. One thing I would like to add, that we canadd a filter to the bowl, where the water is collected so that we also maintainthe quality of the water at some extent so that all our animals and birds must not harm.

  • Stephanie Adams
    Stephanie Adams Australia

    clever Honey you are lucky to have him. I thought of doing this but then I had the idea that the run off was poisonous so never went ahead with the idea

  • Michelle
    Michelle Roanoke, VA

    a rain barrel doesn't fit under the pipe a/c run off. So I placed a bucket there for now and once full usually once a week I use it to water plants. I think a narrow tub of some sort would work

  • Michael
    Michael Monticello, GA

    Summer, in the south, or other high humidity areas, you can expect 30 - 50 gallons a day.

Inspired? Will you try this project? Let the author know!