The Rainwater Pillow – Rain Barrel Meets Cistern

The Rainwater Pillow
The Rainwater Pillow (photo: Rainwater Collection Systems, Inc.)

Utilizing rainwater runoff is a double bonus for homeowners, both in environmental and financial terms.  It reduces the amount of water consumed from the municipal system, and it lessens the strain on wastewater treatment facilities that must process water after it flows down the drain.  A rain barrel is great for small-scale applications like a flower garden, and now there is an option for large-scale rainwater collection without the need for a traditional cistern:  the Rainwater Pillow.

The Rainwater Pillow system consists of an intake filter connected to a flexible water storage bladder, and an outflow hose powered by a small integrated pump.  The standard 1,000-gallon Rainwater Pillow measures 9’ x 11’ x 2.5’, and it can be positioned in any convenient spot (such as underneath a deck).  Custom designs are also available for larger applications (up to 40,000-gallon capacity) and also for potable water systems.  According to the manufacturer, a roof measuring 40’ x 40’ would provide enough runoff during one inch of rainfall to fill the 1,000-gallon Pillow.

rainwater pillow
Rainwater Pillow System (photo: Rainwater Collection Systems, Inc.)

In a typical setup, pipes connect downspouts to the filter connection, which screens out any leaves or debris.  Redundant overflow pipes prevent the Pillow from bursting when it reaches its capacity.  The manufacturer states that the Pillow can safely store water for up to five years, and the reinforced polymer alloy material is resistant to both UV rays and temperature extremes. The outflow pump provides adequate water pressure for uses like lawn irrigation, and the system even features a remote pump control in case the pillow is positioned in a hard-to-reach spot.

The Rainwater Pillow isn’t exactly cheap (prices start at $2,500 for the complete 1,000-gallon system) but a large-scale rainwater collection system like this could substantially reduce both your utility costs and your environmental footprint.  Learn more at the Rainwater Pillow website.

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