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How do I drain my Garden Tech water butt? Do they have drain plugs? Is it possible to access the bottom bit of water?

Garden Tech supplies a diverse selection of water butts to suit a wide variety of outdoor spaces. All of our decorative water butts are designed to sit directly on the floor, with a tap located roughly 30cm high. The water below this line acts as a weight to ensure that your water butt won’t blow away on a windy day and is the ideal height for filling your watering can. 

It’s advisable to drain your water butt in the winter to prevent damage from freezing. To completely drain your water butt, there is an easy to remove plug located at the bottom of the tank. 

Emptying your water butt periodically allows you to scrub out the interior and remove any build-up of slime or dirt from the sides and bottom of the container. 

Your garden plants thrive on the freshest water. Rainwater that has been left standing too long may become stagnant, with an overgrowth of bacteria and parasites that could damage your plants.

Why isn’t the tap at the bottom of the water butt?

Garden Tech’s decorative water butts are designed to sit directly onto the ground. By placing the tap approximately 30cm higher, it allows the water below this line to act as a weight to keep the butt stable in adverse conditions as well as allowing you to easily fill your watering can. 

What happens if my water butt freezes? How do I prepare for winter – will it need emptying?

We tend not to think about our water butts too much during the winter, as our need for them declines in the wetter, colder months. However, maintaining your water butt over the winter months will ensure you can continue to enjoy it for many years to come.

We recommend emptying your water butt as the colder weather sets in to prevent the risk of water freezing, expanding, and then damaging your container. 

If draining your water butt isn’t possible, you can use insulation to prevent ice from forming. Bubble wrap works well, or you can purchase speciality gardening protection fleece.

Elevating your water butt can also protect it from freezing in low temperatures. Your water butt can be placed on a stand so that it isn’t in direct contact with the cold ground. Always make sure that you empty your water butt before attempting to move it.

How do I connect my water butt? Which type of down pipe connection do I need? What about additional parts?

All Garden Tech water butts will arrive with a complete installation kit and instructions. Connections may differ depending on the size and shape of the drain pipe that you’re connecting it to but they tend to follow a similar simple method.

Follow these simple steps to connect your water butt to the downpipe:

Cut a section of the downpipe or drill into it. 
Insert the water capturing system into the downpipe to direct the rainwater through a smaller pipe. 
Connect this smaller pipe to the hole that is drilled in the top of a water butt.

The system provided includes an integrated filtration and overflow system.

Does my water butt require additional filtration?

The rainwater collected in your water butt should only be reserved for gardening purposes only. It doesn’t require extensive filtration and the systems that we provide include a filtration device that is more than adequate.

Garden plants tend to prefer rainwater to what we get out of the tap, as it provides them with all of the nutrients they need minus the added dose of chlorine. Over filtration of the rainwater can remove some of these nutrients, making the water less beneficial to your plants.

Your plants may also be damaged by stagnant water, so it’s important to regularly clean and empty your water butt to keep it fresh.

Does my Garden Tech water butt attach to the wall?

Most of the water butts we supply are designed to be freestanding and won’t need to attach to a wall. The weight of the water butt when filled to its lowest level will be sufficient to keep it stable in adverse weathers.

A few of our water butts could be prone to falling down due to their shape. These are sold with suitable wall mounting brackets and include all of the instructions needed to affix them to a wall.

How does the water stay clean in water butts with planters on top?

The plants that sit on top of the decorative water butts are contained within a planter cup lined with a layer of geotextile fleece. This layer keeps the plants separate from the rest of the water butt.

The geotextile fleece filters the rainwater that passes through the planter cup, picking up additional nutrients from the plants and filtering the water to remove any nasties.

Is it possible to get a new plant tray for my water butt?

Your plant tray filters the water entering your water butt, so it’s important to make sure that it is in good condition. All of our plant trays come with a five-year warranty, and replacement trays are available to purchase from our website.

How do I stop my empty water butt falling over?

All of our water butts are stable when filled to the lowest water line, or supplied with wall mounting brackets for additional stability.
If you have emptied your water butt, for the winter or for cleaning, you may wish to partiallyrefill it with clean fresh water to act as a weight while you wait for the rain.

Do your water butts have a lockable lid?

All Garden Tech water butts come with a lid that is designed to fit securely, even on a windy day. The water butts that have lids at the top, instead of a planter cup, have a secure built-in locking system. If you live in a particularly windy area or are concerned about curious pets or children, we stock Water Butt Childproof Locks/Wind Protection.

These locks are drilled into the top of your receptacle and provide a more secure locking mechanism.
This additional item needs to be ordered separately.

How does the downpipe filter on my water butt work?

A downpipe filter filters the rainwater before it enters your water butt and prevents the tank from overflowing when full. You can see it in action HERE.

We supply rain collectors and downpipe filters based on your requirements.

– The Speedy rain collector can connect a water butt to your downpipe in just five minutes.
– The Pro downpipe filter is suitable for larger roof areas of up to 200 square metres.
– The internal filter of the Garden Tech downpipe filters and rain collectors promises excellent water quality and also includes an integral automatic overflow inhibit.

How do I get a replacement tap?

It’s not often that these need replacing, but if you do fancy a change, we can help! All of our taps are also available to purchase individually from our website.

All Garden Tech taps are covered by the manufacturers’ five-year warranty.

How do I prevent overflowing?

All Garden Tech downpipe filters are manufactured with a built-in overflow system. The filter connecting the downpipe to your water butt is fitted to the level you would like the water to fill to. When the water reaches this level, the collection system in the downpipe stops re-directing the water into the water butt.

Will the colour fade on my water butt?

Our decorative water butts are made from 100% recycled plastic and may fade over time when exposed to sunlight. They are manufactured with a protective layer to prevent them from being damaged by the elements, but over time, these layers can fade and become less smooth.

We commend choosing a shaded spot for your water butt to reside. This will also keep your water fresher, as heat helps create the ideal breeding ground for bacteria and algae.

Can I put a pump in my water butt?

Fitting a pump to your water butt allows you to use a hose to water your garden. This eliminates the need to refill and lug around heavy watering cans. You can fit a garden pump to any water butt with a lid on top, as the pump can be submerged into the tank.

Can I join multiple tanks together?

Multiple water butts can be connected in a chain to provide greater water storage capacity for your garden. Our water butts are designed to be easily joined together using our simple connection kit, containing a small hose, a drill bit, and the fittings needed to connect the water butts together.

Can I connect a hose to my water butt?

Most of our water butt taps can support a range of hose couplings for you to connect a hosepipe. It is also possible to remove the tap and connect a hose directly to the tank using the correct fitting. 

If you need extra water pressure, we recommend fitting a garden pump to your water butt.

What is included with my water butt?

We sell our downpipe connections separately to allow you can specify exactly what you need for your garden.  Most of our water butts do come equipped with a tap.

How do I keep pests out of my compost bin?

A soil fence placed at the bottom of your compost bin can prevent access to rodents and other pests while providing a flat, secure base for the compost bin. The tiny holes restrict rodents from getting in but still allow small insects through to support the composting process.

What can I put in my compost bin?

Composting is an excellent way to dispose of household and garden waste, but you need to be careful about what you include.

You can put in:

* Leaves
* Grass clippings
* Manure from herbivores
* Brush trimmings
* Non-animal food scraps, including fruits, vegetables, old herbs and spices, peelings, bread, cereal, coffee grounds, tea leaves and tea bags
* Old wine
*Pet bedding from herbivores i.e. rabbits, hamsters, etc.
* Dry cat or dog food
* Dust from sweeping and vacuuming
* Tumble dryer lint

Some items need additional preparation. The following items can be added to compost but may take a season or two to break down. This happens more quickly in one of our composters with Thermolen technology. 

* Shredded non-glossy paper, such as newspaper, receipts, and paper bags
* Clean tissues, paper towelling, and cotton balls
* Household cardboard, such as egg cartons and toilet rolls
* Used textiles made from natural fabrics such as cotton, linen, silk, wool, and bamboo
* Pine needles and cones
* Sawdust and wood chips
* Corn cobs
* Pits from mangos, avocados, peaches, plums, etc.
* Old, dry pasta
* Nutshells

* Raspberry and blackberry brambles
* Large twigs and branches
* Pet droppings from carnivores 
* Animal products not mentioned above, such as meat, bones, butter, milk, and fish skins

What’s Thermolen and how does it differ from a normal composter?

Thermolen is a high-quality plastic that retains the heat and moisture of the compost inside the bin. The extra heat acts as a catalyst to the composting process, enabling the bin to produce a greater volume of compost that contains fewer weed seeds and higher levels of substances that promote plant growth.

The plastic of our Thermolen composters is filled with thousands of minute air bubbles, vastly improving its insulation.

How do I get my compost out when it’s ready?

Your compost is ready when it no longer smells of ammonia and instead has a pleasant, earthy odour. The initial organic ingredients will be no longer identifiable, replaced by a dark crumbly matter. You can check the status of your compost by peeking through the door at the bottom of all Garden Tech composters. When it’s ready, you can remove it through the door by hand or using a scoop.

Do I really need a soil fence?

A soil fence is the best way to prevent rodents and small animals from climbing into your composter, while still allowing insects to play a part in the composting process. The soil fence is placed at the bottom of your compost bin and provides a flat, secure base for the compost bin and protection from unwanted invaders.

How do I choose the correct composter and soil fence?

The size of your compost bin is determined by the amount of material you intend to compost. For a family of four, we would recommend a 600L bin – in fact, three out of our four best-selling compost bins are this size. Once you’ve chosen a compost bin we can then recommend a suitable soil fence to go with it.

Do you sell replacement compost bin lids?

We do, but they’re not currently listed on our website as we order them directly from the manufacturer. Please contact our customer services department if you require one.

What size compost bins does Garden Tech sell?

We have a wide range of composters from 280 to 1,000 litres. Shop the range HERE

Are Garden Tech compost bins flat packed?

All of our composters that are smaller than 300L are delivered ready to go, but our bigger ones are flat-packed and shipped in a box. They come with a full set of simple instructions and piece together easily without using tools.

Do the tunnels and cloches come with pegs and end plates?

No, you must purchase the correct pegs and end plates for your arrangement separately. Pegs will secure your tunnels and cloches against the elements, and end caps protect the plants within.

Garantia forcing cloches and sunny growing tunnels act as mini portable greenhouses for your garden. They create warm environments for your plants and protect them from rodents and pests. They are used to cover individual plants in decorative gardens or to protect rows of short-growing plants such as cut flowers, strawberries, and vegetables. In late winter and early spring seedbeds and seedlings can be covered to ensure they start to grow and at the other end of the season cloches and sunny tunnels can be used to promote ripening ready for harvest. In the UK, cucumbers and dwarf French beans are known to grow very well under cloches!

However, something to consider is that dissimilar to well-built greenhouses, cloches can easily blow away or be lifted by animals, if not well attached to the earth. This is why we recommend also purchasing our pegs. Our pegs secure your cloche to the soil and come in packs of 10! You can buy them HERE 

As well as pegs, the tunnels are complemented by the end caps. These seal off the end of your tunnel to ensure it is fully enclosed and your plants are safe!