Dublin is rolling out rain barrel classes in an effort to improve water quality.

Dublin is rolling out rain barrel classes in an effort to improve water quality.

The city is working to promote rain barrels and is offering classes that include a free rain barrel to get them at more Dublin residences.

"We have an interest in making sure the water that goes into the water and streams around Dublin is as clean as it can be," said Kristin Yorko, Dublin civil engineer.

Code and requirements are in place to deal with erosion throughout Dublin and the state, but the city is trying to float another idea to residents.

"We want to try to take it to a higher degree and try to educate residents on the value of storm water and keeping it clean," Yorko said.

"A lot of folks don't realize curbs and gutters feed into storm sewers that go into creeks and streams. It doesn't go to a treatment plant," she said.

"One of the ways to keep water clean is to stop runoff on their property and use that water instead of paying for city water," Yorko said.

Dublin City Council members changed city code a few years ago to allow rain barrels in residential areas.

According to Yorko, utilizing a rain barrel can have benefits beyond saving money and improving water quality.

"Rain water is healthier for plants because it doesn't have chlorine in it," she said. "Plants don't need a lot of that other stuff."

Yorko said one of her friends waters indoor plants with rain water and swears it works wonders for orchids.

Classes offered on rain barrels from Dublin focus on the barrels and how they work.

Attendees can choose between taking a 50- or 65-gallon rain barrel home with them and Yorko said the class will also teach them how to install it at home.

"You get a rain barrel and know how to install it," she said.

The large, 65-gallon rain barrel is less decorative and comes in three colors: granite, charcoal and terra cotta. To install it, a hose is run from the downspout to the rain barrel.

"It basically looks like a pot with a lid on it," Yorko said.

The 50-gallon rain barrel looks like a decorative planter and has two ways to hook it to a home's gutter system.

"The drill bit is included in the kit to cut into the gutter," Yorko said.

The city has already held two classes and residents walked away pretty pleased, Yorko said.

"I learned something, so that's always a good thing," she said.

Rain barrel classes are $48 and include a choice of rain barrels. Classes are 6:30-8 p.m. Wednesday, May 15 and 10-11:30 a.m. Saturday, June 8 at the Art Stable in Coffman Park.

To sign up, look online at dublinohiousa.gov/living/rain-barrel-benefits/.