7 Best Rain Barrels Reviews | Perfect for Rainwater

Rain barrels are 50-100 gallon covered plastic tanks with a hole in the top for downspout discharge. They have an overflow outlet and a spigot where you can also attach a hose at the bottom. Their sole purpose is rainwater harvesting.

Using rainwater is environmentally friendly, safe and cost-efficient way of using free renewable source of water for your garden. According to United States Environmental Protection Agency EPA, using best rain barrels is an ideal way to conserve water.

Most rain barrels these days are made of heavy-duty plastic. Modern plastics are made to resist UV light and other elements.

It is important for property owners to use the water in rain barrels on a regular basis, or else they fill up and no further roof runoff can be stored. You want your best rain barrel system to be running with fresh rainwater at all times.

ModelEditor RatingPrice 
1. RTS Home Accents 50-Gallon Rain Water Collection Barrel with Brass Spigot, Wood Grain
4.2$$$
2. Enviro World Corporation Rain Barrel , 55 Gallon
4.1$$
3. Oatey 14209 Mystic Rainwater Collection System
4.1$
4. Good Ideas RW50-OAK Rain Wizard Rain Barrel 50 Gallon, Oak
3.8$$
5. Good Ideas RWURN Rain Wizard Rain Barrel Urn 65-Gallon, Terra Cotta
3.9$$$
6. Good Ideas RB55-BLUE Big Blue Recycled Rain Barrel, 55-Gallon
4.0$$
7. Upcycle 55 Gallon Gray Rain Barrel
4.2$$

Buying Guide And Useful Info

Materials

While you could make your own out of a large planter or wooden barrel, these natural materials are prone to rot and decay. Quality UV resistant plastic rain barrels are your best and safest bet. They won’t corrode or harbor bacteria, algae or insects and they’re super easy to clean.

Safety concerns

Because the rainwater you plan on using is running off your roof, there are safety concerns to be addressed. Some roofing materials will contaminate rainwater and make it dangerous to use.

You should not use roof catchment areas that incorporate asbestos shingles, tar and gravel, or treated cedar shakes. You should also check your gutters to make sure that they don't use lead solder or lead based paints. Your roof or gutters will not be safe carriers for rainwater if they are made of copper.

Any system you select will require a tight-fitting lid to keep animals out and prevent the development of algae. It should also be made of quality material like food grade plastic which is UV protected.

A fine mesh screen is very important to reduce the amount of debris in the water and also keep mosquitoes from using the standing water as their breeding ground.

There are also special diverters available. They will block the initial water flow in a rainstorm from going into the rain barrel. After the first flow washes the dirt out of the air and off the roof, the diverter reroutes water back into the barrel.

Positioning

Rain barrels are used almost exclusively on residential properties. Because rain barrels rely on gravity flow, they should be placed near and slightly higher than, the point of use whether it is a garden, a flower bed, or a lawn.

If you’d like to use a water bucket, measure its height and place a stable support under the barrel. Also, the more you lift it, the better flow you will have. Do make your installation as stable and safe as possible.

To keep the foundation of your home safe from water damage, it's essential that your rain barrel has an automatic overflow outlet. It will divert water back into the downspout once the barrel has been filled. The overflow outlet should be routed to a dry well, bioretention area, or rain garden where excess water will be soaked up.

Check out the best rain barrels in our rain barrel reviews

7 Best Rain Barrels

Editor Rating:

4.2/5

RTS Home Accents 50-Gallon Rain Water Collection Barrel with Brass Spigot, Wood Grain

RTS Home Accents 50-Gallon Wood Grain Rain Barrel comes with a brass spigot, a protective mesh screen and the instruction manual. You can also checkout the RTS short but useful assembly video. You can connect this barrel to other barrels to increase water collection if the capacity of 50 gallons does not meet your needs.

This barrel has a flat back to allow for better access to the downspout and flush fit to the wall. The fine mesh screen with the plastic frame sits snug in the rectangular base and will keep out the insects. There are no large openings which might be a safety issue for your kids or pets so the barrel is safe as much as it is practical.

Finish-wise, this is the best rain barrel to make your garden even more beautiful. Although the barrel looks exactly like authentic oak, it is made from a durable plastic which won’t rot or be prone to insect infestations. The inside of the barrel should stay clean even after long-term use which is good as there are no large openings to thoroughly brush it.

However, there is still a way to thoroughly clean RTS Home Accents 50-Gallon Wood Grain Rain Barrel: you can empty it out and spray it with a hose. Clean the interior with a solution of 1/8-cup chlorine bleach to 5 gallons of water. Alternatively, use ¼-cup castile soap and ¼-cup vinegar to 5 gallons of water. Rinse the barrel thoroughly after cleaning it with one of these solutions.

This barrel has a brass spigot shut off valve for hose hook-up and an overflow on the front side keeps water from flooding against your wall which the barrel is leaning against. The spigot fits snug once you screw it in but if there is still a little water leak around the spigot, you can get some plumbers tape and all-weather silicone caulk to seal it.

To mount the spigot, when you begin to screw the spigot in, make sure that it is going in straight. If it isn’t, don't keep going. Back it out, and start again until it goes in straight. If you try to force it in crooked, you'll reach a point where it gets stuck in the barrel and won't turn to tighten down far enough.

Things We Liked


  • ​Beautiful oak texture finish
  • ​Quality and durable plastics

  • ​Flat-back construction a practical feature
  • ​Easy to install and convenient for rainwater collection

Things We Didn't Like


  • The barrel might bow out in the back flat part which causes the rectangular screen not to fit properly

Price:

$$$

Editor Rating:

4.1/5

Enviro World Corporation Rain Barrel , 55 Gallon

Enviro World Corporation Rain Barrel has a 55-gallon capacity and features a sleek flat back square design which fits great any wall or corner spot around the home.

This barrel is injection molded and made from high density polyethylene. This makes it easy to keep the barrel clean and looking brand new for a long time. It comes in neutral beige color. The two sided overflow allows for multiple connecting containers from either side.

The barrel kit includes a powder coated steel screen, all brass standard size spigot, extension hose and child lock screws .The spigot is located high enough to allow for easy access with any watering can. This feature doesn’t require additional tall stand.

Another point: although the actual operating capacity of water between the spigot and the overflow is decreased to about 45 gallons, the reasoning behind the higher spigot positioning is that water left in the bottom keeps the barrel from tipping over in the wind, as it is never empty. In addition, the spigot is high enough for you to place a watering can under it.

The shape of the lid is perfect for directing water and this is the only rain barrel we’ve come across that has a slanted top and a perfect fine mesh screen in the center to filter out even the tiniest debris. This may well be your best rain barrel regarding the practical features.

This barrel feels solid and is clearly well-designed. It has all of the right features, including smart design for overflowing into another barrel (or as many as you want). It also has a removable lid that fits securely and comes with screws so you can be certain the lid won’t come off.

The best feature of Enviro World Corporation Rain Barrel is that it has a completely removable lid. The entire top is pressure fit and comes off so you can easily clean out the barrel. This makes it the best rain barrel as regards cleaning and maintenance. For those with concerns about animals or children falling in, let’s repeat once again, the lid can be screwed down using the screws provided for safety.

Things We Liked


  • ​Completely removable top lid
  • ​Slanted lid wall and super fine mesh
  • ​Quality and durable beige plastic design

  • ​Raised brass spigot for watering can use
  • Square construction a convenient feature

Things We Didn't Like


  • Occasional leaks reported in rain barrels reviews

Price:

$$

Editor Rating:

4.1/5

Oatey 14209 Mystic Rainwater Collection System

Oatey 14209 Mystic Rainwater Collection System directs rainwater from downspouts into collection barrels for re-use in your lawn or garden watering. It fits standard 2" x 3" residential downspouts and also comes with a stopper to plug up the diverter during the winter months.

The two-piece design is made of UV-Resistant PVC plastic and can be painted. It also comes with 4 ft. hi-flow hose. The hose is thick plastic and is folded. You will need to remove the creases from the hose or the water will not flow through. You can use a blow-dryer to heat up the creases while you bend it.


So how does it work? There is a diverter inside the unit. It diverts the water into the barrel. Most water goes into the barrel and only a small amount continues down the downspout. When the barrel is full the water backs up into the unit and goes down the downspout.

So, if you are considering purchasing Oatey 14209 Mystic Rainwater Collection System to divert water from the gutter into a rain barrel without having to install an overflow valve since your barrel doesn’t have one, this is your best rain barrel diverter.

When it first rains after installation, it will fill your rain barrel to the top and then divert the water back thru the downspout after the barrel was topped off. It is made of a very heavy duty white plastic but you can paint it in a different color if you want to.

The water sticks to the inside wall of the gutter and thus diverts easily to the barrels. Very little comes down the downspout until the barrels are full if you install it properly.

Just follow the instructions so you do not cut too much out of your gutter.


This model offers the ability to manually shut off the diverter. You simply disconnect the hose leading to the barrel and then use the provided stopper to plug up the same nozzle leading from the diverter. The principle on which it works is that, with nowhere to go, the water just builds up inside the diverter and drains as it would normally down your spout.

Things We Liked


  • ​Simple but practical diverting solution
  • ​Easy to install and winterize without the need to remove it.
  • ​Quality white plastic can be painted
  • ​Fits all standard square 2" x 3" residential downspouts

Things We Didn't Like


  • You might need to replace the hose with a better one

Price:

$

Editor Rating:

3.8/5

Good Ideas RW50-OAK Rain Wizard Rain Barrel 50 Gallon, Oak

Good Ideas RW50-OAK Rain Barrel has a 50-gallon capacity and comes in oak finish. Many of you will like the classic whiskey barrel look which gives it a touch of old times. At the same time, using modern day technology, this barrel is rotationally molded to hold up against cracking and splitting, even in cold winters.

Rain barrels have been used for thousands of years to collect and save water. Today, millions of people around the world use rain barrels to bring natural water to their lawn and plants. Technology has helped to make these barrels more feature rich and efficient than ever before.

This barrel has flat-back design that saves space and is made from ultra-tough, BPA-free, FDA approved Polyethylene. It comes with anti-debris screen that keeps out bugs and gutter debris.

This anti-debris and bug screen on the top of the barrel will work with standard 2x3” and 3x4” downspouts. The fine mesh keeps out mosquitoes and debris and can be removed with a Phillips head screwdriver to clean it. The front overflow screen lets excess water drain away from the foundation to avoid flooding.

To reduce the barrel's footprint and make it more practical Good Ideas has flattened the back of the traditional oak barrel design so it leans fit with your exterior wall. The fine wood grain texture still brings out that authentic, traditional oak barrel appearance.

The barrel comes with a brass plated, turn-down spigot which is 3/4-inch and will work with standard hose hookups. You will also find plumber's tape for better seal included in order to prevent leaks.

If you want to increase the water pressure or make room for the water bucket you can place the barrel on a platform made of bricks or cinder blocks. You can also buy a stand specifically designed for rain barrels. Just make sure to check whether the stand can support 50 gallons of water safely.

Things We Liked


  • ​Traditional oak texture finish
  • ​BPA-free, FDA approved Polyethylene
  • ​Flat-back construction a convenient feature
  • ​Brass spigot and protective fine screen mesh included

Things We Didn't Like


  • 50 gallons as well as the overall quality is disputed in rain barrel reviews

Price:

$$

Editor Rating:

3.9/5

Good Ideas RWURN Rain Wizard Rain Barrel Urn 65-Gallon, Terra Cotta

Good Ideas RWURN Rain Barrel is urn-shaped and has a 65-gallon capacity. Made of plastic but in terracotta color, it will add a touch of style to your garden. The flat back design makes the “urn” sit tightly against your outside wall.

Good Ideas RWURN comes with a self draining, planter top and a molded diverter channel which sends overflow water to the front and away from foundations. The included brass spigot is a standard 3/4-inch size to hook up with hoses and is angled to reduce kinking. A plumber's tape is also included to provide a leak free fit.

The fine mesh screen keeps out mosquitoes and debris and fits all standard 3x4” and 2x3” downspouts. The little screen under the downspout is the only top opening, It can be taken off but it is still difficult to clean the urn through it. You’ll have to use a power washer or a liquid cleaning agent.

The runoff design for excess water once the barrel is full isn't very well designed as excess water just rolls off top of barrel down its front face. If you don’t like it, you might need to do some tinkering to improve the runoff.

Another slight drawback is that the water flow of the faucet provided is reduced and if you want to fill a large container it may take a few minutes. Still, for those of you who would like to avoid getting an industrial barrel shape, Good Ideas RWURN is a decent option.

Things We Liked


  • ​65-gallon capacity
  • ​Pretty urn design
  • ​Top planter for flowers a nice touch
  • ​Brass spigot and screen included
  • Flat back construction a convenient feature

Things We Didn't Like


  • Not the best runoff solution

Price:

$$$

Editor Rating:

4.0/5

Good Ideas RB55-BLUE Big Blue Recycled Rain Barrel, 55-Gallon

Good Ideas RB55-BLUE Big Blue Recycled Rain Barrel has a capacity of 55-gallon and, as the name says, it’s indeed recycled. They are not made from various plastics through traditional recycling processes, however.

What Good Ideas actually did is collect these barrels from facilities which used them to store or transport processed food stuffs, typically juice. Normally, these companies would simply send the barrels to the landfills but Good Ideas rescues them and converts them into rain barrels.

In this environmentally friendly way, these barrels are converted for a useful purpose. There may be cosmetic blemishes or a slight juice odor but the blemishes should not affect barrel function and the juice odor should dissipate after the first few cycles of rain.

Each Big Blue has two spigot locations for hose hookups. You can use the upper location for filling buckets or handling overflow and the lower one for running hoses.

The barrels come with a spigot which is brass plated and will work well with standard hose hookups. The no kink design keeps water flowing normally and there’s also plumber's tape provided to seal the spigot connection with the barrel.

The anti-debris and bug screen on the barrel's top will work with standard 2x3” and 3x4” downspouts. The fine mesh keeps out mosquitoes and debris. The mesh can be removed with a Phillips head screwdriver so you can clean the barrel periodically.

Things We Liked


  • ​Reused barrels are food-grade and eco-friendly products
  • ​Resistant to rust, mold, mildew, and rotting
  • ​Two optional locations for spigot placement
  • ​Brass spigot for hose hook-up or dual overflow
  • Fine screen mesh included

Things We Didn't Like


  • Thorough pre-sale cleaning by manufacturer would be appreciated

Price:

$$

Editor Rating:

4.2/5

Upcycle 55 Gallon Gray Rain Barrel

Upcycle 55 Gallon Gray Rain Barrel is another barrel made from food-quality recycled barrels which never rust or rot. You can even leave them out during the winter as they are weatherproof.

A protective screen on top will keep out mosquitoes and roof debris. They come in a neutral gray color which blends with any background. If you don’t like the color, it's paintable. The manufacturer recommends using Krylon Fusion paint for plastic.

Upcycle rain barrels are linkable, so a single downspout can fill as many barrels as you want depending on your needs. An overflow fitting lets you divert extra water away from your house and a convenient spigot on the bottom fits any standard garden hose for easy watering.

Upcycle sets the right example, using collected rainwater and biodegradable soap to wash and rinse these barrels, so no harsh chemicals bother your beautiful plants. Upcycle uses recycled materials in the manufacturing process. This means that they may use different batches of recycled materials when molding any single barrel so body styles may vary.

If you buy more barrels, Upcycle will do all they can to match products but cannot guarantee that they will be identical. Some can have a smooth surface while others may be ribbed. Manufacturer promises that they can be reached for special instructions, so feel free to call their customer service for specialized requests.

Upcycle is the largest manufacturer of Upcycled Rain Barrels in the United States. Originally used to ship food overseas, these recycled barrels are ideal for storing rainwater. Apart from saving landfill space, Upcycle's company philosophy is that nothing is thrown out. So although their barrels are grey, the company philosophy is indeed green.

Things We Liked


  • ​Reused food-grade barrels are environmentally friendly products
  • ​Resistant to rust and rotting
  • ​Brass spigot for standard hose hook-ups
  • ​Fine screen mesh included on a screw-off lid

Things We Didn't Like


  • The overflow drain does not work that well as it is pointing upwards

Price:

$$

Laurie S.

As a multi home owner for 15 years I’ve tried out a ton of pool products and methods and have found out the best ones that work for me.

I love helping out other people with real, honest advice and spending time with my family. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact me in the about or through a comment.

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