Now, we have been mulling the whole idea of water for quite some time now – long before we started the garden process. How do you capture gray water without having to do major remodeling to retrofit the plumbing? Still haven’t figured that one out…
BUT – we did come up with a way to capture the cool water coming out of the shower head as we wait for the warm water to arrive. Our showers and hot water tank couldn’t be farther away from each other in this house, and it can take a long time for the heated water to arrive at the shower. SO, we installed diverters at the shower heads, the kind that diverts the water to a hand-held shower nozzle. But, instead of the hand-held nozzle, we connected a garden hose to the diverter that then goes out the window, along the eaves of the house to a 55-gallon blue barrel to collect all that delicious potable water!
Shower head 1
Shower head 2
I know, it’s not real aesthetically pleasing… But, if it works, then we can figure out how to make it look beautiful (which may still mean major remodeling…).
With the hose running out the window, we needed to stop any of our air conditioned air from going out, and definitely needed to keep the hot outside air from coming in! Noodles are the answer! You know the kind that are for swimming pools – bright colored, floating, foam noodles. We even had two lying around the house to use to retrieve the dogs’ tennis balls out from under the couch, purple and lime green.
Noodle in the window
Hose hole in noodle
We cut a piece of the purple noodle the height of the window, cut a little hole at the bottom for the hose to fit through, and then squeezed the window closed as tight as possible, holding it shut with a dowel. We figure it probably has a better R-value than the window.
On the outside, this is what it looks like…
Outside Bathroom 1
Outside bathroom 2
We ran the hose along the eaves to reach the 55-gallon barrel near the planters.
Along the eaves
We used electric conduit clips to hold the hose in place.
Electric conduit clips
At the end of the eaves
Next, we tackle the hose to water barrel to drip irrigation!