Build ItHow to Make Grey Water System for Washing Machine

How to Make Grey Water System for Washing Machine

How to Make Grey Water System for Washing Machine on the homestead with just a few inexpensive materials and a couple hours of time.


How to Make Grey Water System for Washing Machine
How to Make Grey Water System for Washing Machine


Grey water is water that is drained from a bathroom sink, shower, tub or washing machine but this never a toilet (that is black water). Grey water can contain traces of grease, food, dirt, hair and liquid from certain household cleaning or hygiene products. Even though grey water may looks “dirty” it is a beneficial and safe source of irrigation water in homesteading landscaping. Grey water that releases into rivers, lakes or estuaries naturally flows among plants and wildlife slowly filtering out impurities. It is obvious that saving grey water is beneficial (along with the money for your water bill), but also by reusing your grey water and keeping it from overwhelming sewers or septic systems. Grey water reused for irrigation reconnects urban residents and backyard gardens to the natural water cycle.

The easiest way to lead grey water into the yard is by making a way for the water with pvc pipes. Guiding it directly outside and use it to water ornamental plants or fruit trees. Grey water can be used to irrigate vegetable plants as long as you use Earth friendly cleaning and hygiene products that may find it’s way into the water in very small amounts. In a greywater system, it is essential to use plant friendly products, without salt, baron or chlorine bleach. Any of these can and will damage the plant once built up in the soil.

For residential grey water systems, simple designs are the best. With simple systems you are not able to send grey water into an existing drip irrigation system, but have to shape your landscape so you allow water to drain into the soil. Simple low-tech systems are recommended that use gravity whenever possible instead of pumps.

People promote grey water reuse as a way to increase productivity of sustainable backyard ecosystems that produce food, clean water and shelter wildlife. Systems as such, recover valuable waste products grey water, household compost and reconnect their human inhabitants to ecological cycles.

More complex systems are suited for multi-family, commercial and industrial scale systems. Such systems can treat and reuse large volumes of water. They play a role in water conversion in dense urban household developments, food processing and manufacturing facilities, universities and schools, and public buildings. Complex systems are often designed by an engineer due to the systems needing pumps and filtration, expensive to install and may require maintenance.


– Do not store grey water for more than forty eight hours, if you do, the nutrients in it will start to break down and create bad odors.

– Minimize contact with grey water therefore your systems should be designed for the water to soak into the ground and NOT be available for people or animals to drink.

– Infiltrate grey water into the ground, don’t allow it to pool up or run off, knowing how well water drains into your soil will help with proper design. Pooling grey water can provide mosquito breeding grounds as well as a place for human contact with grey water.

– Keep you system as simple possible, avoiding pumps, filters that require maintenance.
Simple systems last longer, require less maintenance, less energy to make and costs less money.

– Install a 3-way valve for easy switching between the grey water systems and the sewer.

– Match the amount of grey water your plants receive with their irrigation needs.

Click here to read about How to Make Grey Water System for Washing Machine

Here is a second step by step tutorial of using grey water from a washing machine – (Click here to read)

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Melissa Francis
Melissa Francis
Greetings! I'm Melissa Francis, the founder and primary contributor to The Homestead Survival. With over 20 years of experience in homesteading, sustainability, and emergency preparedness, I've dedicated my life to helping others achieve a simpler, more self-reliant lifestyle.

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