Site location: Berkeley, CA
The gutters were routed from the new roof. A “first flush” system was installed by adding a Tee with a run of pipe going to the ground. The dirtiest first rainwater falls into this pipe and prevents it from entering the storage tank.
The first flush water is released at the bottom of the tube, either by opening the faucet completely, or by leaving the faucet open to a drip to slowly release the water.
The 500 gallon cistern is located on a patio near the garden.
A screen inside the cistern keeps out leaves and other debris.
A garden hose is connected to the base of the cistern, rainwater is used for outside irrigation.
What I learned: 500 gallons fills up quickly but also empties quickly. When I have more time I want to double the capacity.