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Rainbarrels- New or Reconditioned? Answered

Greetings! I want to install rain barrels beneath four downspouts. I would also like to be able to use the water for consumption if the need should arise, so I wonder if the "reconditioned" 55 gallon barrels can be cleaned enough for such use, or should I just purchase brand new ones? I can save a lot of money on the reconditioned ones, but if they are going to contaminate the water, I will gladly pay the price for new. Any advice is most appreciated!  -Bradley



Best Answer 6 years ago

I would buy new plastic "food safe" barrels only. Nothing that has contained chemicals can be cleaned enough for my thinking although other opinions may vary. And water from a steel barrel always tastes funny to me.


6 years ago

I would suggest that you think twice about using any water collected from a roof for drinking. It is going to have all kinds of stuff in it, everything from tannin from leaves to bird poop to dust from roads, which could contain rubber and other particulates. Rain water works great for plants but plants already live in soil so it doesn't matter to them. To collect water for drinking you need to use a clean collection system, such as a tarp that can be stored when not in use so it collects only water and not everything else that settles out of the air.

thanks for the advice everyone!

See if you can get used barrels that contained food products. Cheaper and safe.