How Does My Roof Measure Up for Rainwater Harvesting?

Your roof is traditionally the first step to your rainwater collection system.

For most folks, the roof provides the collection area of rainwater, which then flows down through the gutters or downspouts into your filter, and subsequently, your storage tank.

But does the quality or composition of your roof have an effect on your overall water quality, or your ability to collect plenty of water?

Here’s a look at some of the most popular roof materials and how they stack up for rainwater collection. Check off also what you’ll need to keep in mind for each distinctive roof type.


How Roofs and Rainwater Harvesting Work Together

  • Asphalt

Asphalt or composite shingled roofs are easily some of the most common styles of roofs in the country. Many homes have these in all corners of the United States.

These roofs are perfectly fine when it comes to collecting rainwater. However, homeowners should note that there are contamination risks from particles in the asphalt or composite materials, especially when the shingles are brand new.

But a good filter for your rainwater harvesting system will protect you from contaminants, and will provide plenty of safe water.


  • Metal

Metal roofs are great for collecting water, as long as they are properly coated and have no rust. Watch for metal roofs that are composed of a bare zinc surface, as this can be filtered into your water and can cause contamination.


  • Terracotta

Popular in the Southwest and other areas of the country that regularly experience warm weather, terracotta roofs are certainly suitable for rainwater collection.

However, they must remain nice and clean. Also, make sure your rainwater harvesting system does a solid job of deflecting contaminants.


  • Concrete and Clay

Home or business owners with clay or concrete roofs have a few things they need to be on the lookout for when it comes to rainwater harvesting.

For one thing, aged or deteriorating concrete roofs can lead to excess particles in the water. For another, these types of roofs are prone to growing algae.

A good way to prevent algae growth is to make sure these types of roofs are coated with a special and safe sealant or paint, to prevent algae growth for the long term.


  • Wood

Though rare in the United States, wood roofs are one of the most problematic when it comes to rainwater harvesting.

But they can certainly be used for the endeavor, especially for projects like irrigation.

One of the primary problems with wood roofs is algae growth. It’s essential to keep these surfaces continually clean to ensure safe collection for years to come.


Simply put, virtually any and all styles of roofs can be used for rainwater harvesting. The key is you must keep an eye on the health and cleanliness of your roof. Equally important is to have a great filtration and water harvesting storage system in use.

Start by using our thoroughly tested and reliable rainwater harvesting system. After, stay alert for any problems like algae growth before it reaches the tank. This way you can have a reliable source of water readily available in right your own backyard.

Do you have questions about your roof and rainwater harvesting? Call us or ask in the comments below!


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How Does My Roof Measure Up for Rainwater Harvesting?
How does your roof stack up when it comes to rainwater harvesting? Here’s a look at the most common types of roofs, and considerations homeowners should take to ensure safe collection.

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