The Easiest DIY Rain Barrels and How to Paint Them

ECOS 06/17/2016

One of the easiest ways to go green is to start collecting rainwater for use in your yard and garden. Plenty of manufactured rain barrels are available for a price, such as this fancy wood-grain barrel from RTS for a whopping $110. But the truth is, building a rain barrel is one of the easiest -- and cheapest -- eco-friendly DIY projects you can do! Check out this collection of the best tutorials on how to build the easiest DIY rain barrels out there. As an added bonus, we've added our own tutorial outlining the best way to paint the barrels to your liking. Get ready to learn the best ways to build and decorate your new DIY rain barrel!

#1 "DIY Cheapest Rain Barrel System Ever," Green Power Farms

One of the easiest DIY rain barrel tutorials we found was this video from Green Power Farms. An excellent selling point of this DIY rain barrel is the runoff hose. When the barrel fills up with water, the excess water will run off the top and through the hose to whatever location you choose. This is an excellent way to re-direct rainwater into an area that needs particularly heavy watering.

Fair warning about this barrel, however: There's no screen or filter. If your gutters are prone to filling up with leaves, you may find your barrel full of them or the hoses clogged. Leaf-guards for the gutters would provide a quick fix!

#2 "How to Build a Rain Barrel," ForthaysState

ForthaysState's tutorial is simple, clear and complete. The materials he uses are truly the bare-bone materials needed for a quality barrel with a spout attachment -- and it's very helpful to watch him complete every step on-screen!

#3 "Building a Rain Barrel - Easy as 1, 2, 3," Okanagan WaterWise

Though not the easiest of the bunch, the end product of this tutorial is of such high quality, we just had to include it. And besides, even a somewhat-extensive materials list like this one is easy to chew on with such a friendly guy walking us through every step!

Painting Your Rain Barrel

You may be thinking, "Sure, I'd love to make myself a DIY rain barrel -- but they're such an eyesore!" You're not alone. Tons of other DIY-ers found the bland, plastic-y appearance just as offensive. The best way to solve the problem? Paint your barrel! From an all-over solid coat to a fancy mural-like design, painting your barrel is a great way to wrap up your DIY project and make your new rain barrel fit in perfectly with the landscape of your yard.

Make sure you follow these five steps to paint your barrel:

  1. Wash the barrel and scrub it with a brush. This makes sure there's no dirt and debris trapped in the small lines of the barrel before you continue.
  2. Use sandpaper to dull the barrel's exterior. Use a fine-grit sandpaper for best results. An electric sander gets the job done faster, but you can sand by hand as well.
  3. Wash and scrub the barrel again to remove any dust from sanding. Make sure to let the barrel air-dry completely before you begin to paint!
  4. Coat the surface of the barrel with a primer. Yes, it's shameless self-promotion, but durable, premium ECOS Universal Exterior Primer is sure to do the trick.
  5. Now you're ready to paint your barrel! Exterior Paints and Furniture and Trim Paints from ECOS are perfectly suited for the job. Plus, if you've used ECOS paints on the exterior of your home, you can paint the barrel to perfectly match! Whatever you decide to paint on your barrel, let it dry completely.

We hope you've found our tutorials for building and painting a DIY rain barrel helpful. Share your thoughts, questions, or which tutorial you plan on trying out in the comment section below!

CATEGORIES DIY projects|painting rain barrel|rainwater collection