Active Rainwater Harvesting
An active rainwater system is one in which the water is delivered to a storage container (cistern) for future use. Some of the oldest known examples date back thousands of years. Typically, active systems include a catchment surface (roof), conveyance system (gutter and pipes), storage area (cistern), and a distribution system (hose bibb or irrigation). Systems may rely on gravity for passive distribution, or a pump can be added for extra versatility. The technologies, methods, and materials have changed, but harvesting rainwater is still the smart and right thing to do. As the effects of over-consumption of groundwater become more large scale and widespread, people are realizing the value of having an independent source of water for personal use. This nearly forgotten art is having a revival. Ethos is constantly exploring new methods, ideas, and innovations in rainwater harvesting. We implement those that work well, without excessive cost or maintenance for the client. Our expertise spans from both small-scale residential to large-scale commercial work.

Types of Cisterns:
                                Culvert                Polyethylene                    Fiberglass                     Concrete                        Modular
Ethos' Active Rainwater Harvesting BMPs
  • Placed away from potential erosion of the base
  • Set on stable, compacted soil or concrete pad
  • Cylindrical tanks should not break the 2:1 height-to-diameter ratio without proper engineering
  • All systems should be vented
  • Keep light out
  • Overflow to be at least equal in size to the inflow
  • Overflow should be planned
  • Exposed plastic should be protected from UV exposure
  • Piping should be properly fastened or supported
  • Full-port hose bibbs should be used
  • Debris filters should be near frequented paths and be visible; self-cleaning types are preferable
Components of an Active Water Harvesting system
  • Catchment Area
  • Roof
  • Other high solid canopies
  • Gutters - Downspouts
  • Conveyance system
  • Inflow  & Overflow piping
  • Filtration/Debris Screen
  • Ventilation
  • Storage
  • Access to the water - Hose Bibb

Wet vs. Dry Inflow
  • Wet systems allow the tank to be set away from the downspout
  • Wet systems have water in the conveyance system at the same height as the water in the tank. The system is configured in a U shape.