Rain barrels are great for a blossoming garden, but choosing the right one has its difficulties. The right product will serve your needs for many years, while a dud will be ineffective and frustrating. We want to make sure that your experience falls clearly into the former category.
To make that happen, we’ve spent a ton of time testing water barrels. We vetted dozens of different products, placing only the best of the best on this list.
No matter your budget, you’re sure to find something that suits your needs. That being the case, read on for some rain barrel reviews!
|Gardener's Supply Company||75 gallon||4.15/5|
The Enviro comes in as our best rain barrel for the money. This simple but effective unit comes in at roughly half the price of many comparable options. But, for your money, you get a slew of familiar features.
The Enviro World features a 50-gallon capacity, a flat back that keeps it flush with your house, and a durable plastic build that should serve to help you keep it in your garden for many seasons to come. It also benefits from an overflow spigot that will help reduce the risk of overflow.
Unfortunately, many users have reported problems with the spigot. The most frequent complaint is that it is poorly attached and may not last for very long.
The Algreen is an elegant barrel that is designed to resemble a clay pot. The actual material, a durable plastic, should do well to stand up to wear and tear for many years. It looks great and can even be used to grow vegetation on the top of the barrel, further increasing the aesthetic of your garden. It also comes with a solid brass spigot that is highly durable and immune to corrosion.
Finally, the unit features a 65-gallon capacity that is a good deal more sizable than that of the other options on the market.
Of course, being that this is a premium product, it comes with a price tag that follows. It’s an expensive barrel that is pricier than most of the other options on our list.
The RTS is a moderately priced, 50-gallon barrel made of authentic oak that should be durable for long term use. Thanks to pre-cut holes on the side of the unit, it can be effortlessly attached to other products from the same manufacturer to further increase your capacity.
It also features a durable aluminum mesh screen that will prevent bugs and other contaminants from infiltrating your barrel.
Lastly, the RTS benefits from a brass spigot that activates automatically in the event of an overflow. Unfortunately, many users are reporting that the hardware doesn’t hold up very well under pressure. The spigot comes loose very easily and may not last for as long as the barrel itself.
The Suncast is a 50-gallon barrel that features a durable resin construction. The unit features square dimensions, which makes it easy to place against an exterior wall of your home. It also benefits from a filter screen, and an overflow hose, both serving to keep the product in working in order.
Unfortunately, the draining functions don’t work very well. Many report that the unit takes a long time to drain, and that it can be hard to access all of the water at any given time.
It’s also a little pricey for a plastic barrel. The price isn’t ridiculous, but there are certainly better deals to be found.
The Gardener’s Supply Company is attractive, safe for children, and fairly easy to use. It’s designed to be tip-over proof, and the spigot is pre-threaded to work with most hoses, substantially enhancing the utility of the barrel. Meanwhile, it also has a solid filter on the top that will keep leaves and other contaminants out.
It features an enormous 75-gallon reservoir and an overflow mechanism that further enhances the utility of the barrel. Granted, it is one of the more expensive products featured today, but this is largely attributable to the large size.
Buyers will also want to note that it is reportedly quite difficult to purchase replacement parts.
The FCMP is a moderately priced product. It features a sizable opening to easily collect large quantities of water, and it also benefits from a mesh filter for preventing contamination. The FCMP has an overflow prevention feature and benefits from a flat back for easy installation and tip-over prevention.
A hose is also included as a handy accessory that makes the barrel easier to use. Unfortunately, the overflow features do not work very well. This may be particularly problematic for users that live in areas that experience a lot of rain.
The Goplus features a 55-gallon capacity. This product is unique for the fact that it features a cloth build, and PVC components to hold it up. The top of the unit is constructed from a mesh filter that keeps out contaminants, and the unit can be broken down effortlessly for easy storage during the offseason.
Unfortunately, the convenience of a fabric barrel is met in equal parts with issues. For one thing, it’s not at all durable. It also doesn’t have heavy-duty fixtures, overflow prevention, or any of the other qualities we look for in a high-quality barrel.
If you need something that will last longer than a season or so, this certainly is not it. Still, if your objective is just to get an affordable product that will get the job done in the short term, this may work.
We close out the list with the Upcycle Rain Barrel. The Upcycle is a simple plastic unit that features a 55-gallon capacity. The plastic is recycled, which is a great feature for those concerned with the environment.
However, the ultimate performance of this barrel is somewhat lacking. For one thing, overflow is a substantial concern. It’s not going to perform well in heavy rains, which will be problematic for buyers in certain areas of the country.
The fixtures are also low quality, which cuts against the life expectancy. It will certainly work, but there will be some disappointments to contend with.
Rain barrels may seem very simple, but perhaps they are deceptively so. If you find yourself unsure of which product you should choose, it may help to consider some handy buying considerations. Read on!
For as good as rain barrels are for your garden, they can be infinitely worse for small animals and children. Consequently, you will want to want to pay close attention to the safety features of the barrel you are considering. For example, some include tip-over prevention that will vastly reduce the chance of dangerous falls.
Others may be safely sealed to prevent access by small animals.
The overflow valve does pretty much exactly what the name suggests. When the barrel becomes too full, the valve kicks in, releasing excessive water and helping to keep everything copacetic. Overfilling can damage your barrel if it is not properly regulated, so this is an important feature to have at your disposal.
Unfortunately, it is fairly easy for debris and other contaminants to find their way into your rain barrel. If the situation becomes bad enough, the water you collect can be ruined, and the barrel can even become damaged.
A good filter will go a long way towards correcting this problem. A solid mesh screen that is tightly woven will collect water, while also keeping even the smallest contaminant out of your barrel.
Gardens have a way of growing from year to year. It is a great problem to have, all things considered, but it also means you need to be smart about how you select your equipment. In other words, you may favor a product that can be expanded.
Some rain barrels can connect to additional units, sharply expanding their utility. If you anticipate expanding your garden, it can be handy to invest in something that can link up to additional barrels. Of course, worst-case scenario, you can simply make use of multiple stand-alone units. However, it is always to your advantage to invest in something that can be used cooperatively with other products, should the need arise.
Naturally, the volume of the container is a pretty major consideration. The bigger the barrel, the more rain it will be able to store. The more rain you can store, the better the barrel may ultimately work for you.
Of course, some cons come with buying the biggest unit you can get your hands on. For one thing, they are harder to store. If you don’t have a ton of garden space to begin with, you’ll probably want to make every inch count. They also tend to cost more money.
Rain barrels spend the entirety of their life outside and up against the elements. Consequently, you want to make sure you get something that is durable and effective. Wood may seem like the obvious choice for several reasons. After all, we are talking barrels here. What else but wood could they even be made of?
A number of things actually. A plastic resin will ultimately be your best bet. This material is super durable and pretty much completely resistant to environmental factors.
Wood isn’t a complete wash. For example, it does benefit from recyclability. However, it may deteriorate and splinter over time, and even a high-quality product won’t last as long as a resin reservoir.
The purpose of a rain barrel is primarily functionality but this is a product that will go in your garden. Consequently, a nice design concept may very well be a top priority of yours. The good news is that you can pretty easily find a high functioning rain barrel that also looks good.
Even resin units are often made to look decorative. For example, you can find resin barrels that are made to look wood. Best of both worlds, right? You don’t have to go decorative but why not?
You also want to make sure that the product you are considering features a great warranty. Hopefully, this will account both for repair and replacement. Warranties tend to vary from unit to unit, but the longer the warranty, the better off you will be.
In addition to keeping you covered for longer, solid warranties are also often the watermark of a good product. It’s pretty simple: when a company feels they’ve made something that won’t break, they are much more likely to offer to fix it for free if something does go wrong.
Rain barrels usually aren’t outrageously expensive. Chances are pretty good you will be able to get something for under $100 (though this number can vary substantially depending on the type of size you need).
In any case, it is always a good idea to opt for something on the higher end. Remember that we are talking about something that will suffer constant exposure to the elements. The better made your barrel, the more likely it will be to weather the literal storms that will plague it for the duration of its existence.
The better the barrel, the longer it will last, the more money you ultimately save in the long run. Pretty simple, right?
No matter how much you learned from our rain barrel reviews it makes sense if you are still struggling with your decisions. After all, who good hope to effortlessly choose between ten really good products?
If you are still struggling with selecting from our list of high-end product sit may be in your favor to consider a couple of our top choices. Our number one pick is really great for people that want a solid, well-rounded piece of equipment. The Good Ideas RW50-OAK Rain Barrel is a great option for buyers that demand the very best of the best.
Budget buyers also have good options at their disposal. For you, the Enviro World EWC-10 Rain Barrel is a truly great option to consider.
Featured Image Credit: Enviro, Amazon
Hi there! My name is Adam and I write for HealthyHandyman. I have a great passion for writing about everything related to tools, home improvement, and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either fishing, playing the guitar, or spending quality time with my beloved wife. You'll also often find me in my workshop working on some new project!