Water barrels are large plastic barrels filled with water that act as weights to hold down a tent on flat surfaces. They’re typically rented along with a tent when staking the tent into grass isn’t an option.
While water barrels are nowhere to be found on our top 25 searched rental items on Goodshuffle, they are our number 6 most rented item. This is because people don’t realize they need water barrels when they’re initially thinking about renting a tent.
So who does need water barrels? The most obvious candidate is anyone who is hosting an event on a flat surface such as a patio or parking lot. However, there are often instances of events on grass requiring water barrels, too. There could be items in the ground which could effect installation such as sprinklers, lights, or invisible fencing. Weather, such as a drought or heavy rain, can also influence the ability to stake a tent. Finally, some venues have some very specific fine print surrounding tents. Always be sure to check your contract!
The good news is that water barrels are very inexpensive and their setup is almost always included in the cost of tent setup. The bad news is that they’re not always visually appealing being large, white, plastic drums. Some event planners or brides may choose to cover or decorate them, but you may find you run the risk of drawing more attention to them. If you’re worried about them being eyesores, ask yourself, “How come nobody ever realizes they need water barrels? Is it because nobody ever really notices them?”