There aren’t many consolations to a rainy day– cosy sofa time, soothing sounds of drops on the roof, and possibly a rainbow or a puddle-splash afterwards. But you can add another by building a water tank to capture some of that downpour: it’ll shrink your environmental footprint by lowering your demand on mains water and the quantity of stormwater runoff into rivers and oceans, and can also cut your water bill in the longer term.
Rainwater tanks are no longer just huge, round and hideous; they are available in all shapes and sizes that can make efficient use of small or tricky urban spaces.
Water for outdoor or indoor use?
The absolute most important issue to consider before you acquire and install a rainwater tank is how you want to use the water.
Making use of the water outdoors– for watering the garden and washing the car, as an example– is the most convenient way to start, as you probably just need the supplier to set up the water tank, rather than a licensed plumber. And it will immediately cut your utilization of mains water.
Save even more by sending the rain water to your toilet, washing machine or water system, but you’ll require a licensed plumber to connect the water tank to your mains supply.
What size rain water tank do I require?
The volume you choose will hinge on the shapes and size of your household and garden. Round, squat tanks fit very well under a deck, while slimline tanks are good for narrow spaces. An underfloor tank or bladder storage system is a good out-of-sight space saver, but is more expensive.
Your roof area and the annual rainfall in your area will also have to be considered. To help determine the size and shape that’s right for you, sellers often provide calculators on their internet sites, or your water authority may be able to help.
What else do I need to recognize before investing in a rain water tank?
Rainwater tanks generally come in the following materials:
Metal tanks are created from corrugated or flat rolled metal, which may be galvanised or coated. They often come with a plastic inner lining (Aquaplate) that will boost the life of the tank and shield the water quality.
Polyethylene (plastic) tanks are well-known as they are relatively cheap and durable. Because rust isn’t a problem, they are a pretty good option for people living near the coast. Other synthetic materials, like PVC and geotextile, are applied for bladder storage. Bladders work for water storage below a deck or floor; while their material is tough, it’s not intended for outdoor installation.
Fibreglass tanks are rust and chemical-resistant and designed to withstand extreme temperature levels. They’re not the cheapest alternative, and better for above-ground installation, while all other types can also be set up below ground.
Concrete tanks, often used for agricultural and industrial purposes, won’t rust, burn, melt or blow away. They can be bought ready-made, or custom made onsite.
Ask your regional council and water supplier which rules and regulations apply in your location. You may need to forward a development or building application, and there may be policies around drinking rainwater or mosquito breeding prevention, together with restrictions on the tank’s placement, colour, height and labelling or noise regulations for a pump.
Are you refurbishing, building new or retrofitting?
If you are remodeling or building, in lieu of retrofitting, you may need to incorporate energy and water-efficient attributes in your plans to obey new legislative requirements.
When securing quotes, inquire if there are any supplementary costs for delivery and installation; extra components (such as pipes, fittings and taps); optional extras (such as a first-flush or pop over here backflow-prevention device); a pump (unless you can employ gravity for water pressure); and a stand (unless you intend to put it on the ground or below it, through which case you’ll need to factor in the cost of special ground prep or excavation).
If you intend to connect the tank to your mains supply of water, look into the cost of a licensed plumber, and prices for any extra work that needs to get done to your roof and/or guttering.
Can you acquire a water tank rebate?
Contact your local water or government authority to see if you’re entitled to a cash grant or bill reduction– the answer may depend upon the size of the rain water tank and whether it’s connected to a toilet and/or washing machine.
Rainwater tanks can fluctuate from around $700 to $2000, starting from a small, freestanding model without pump or extras, to large, custom-built models. Costs vary depending upon the size, material, finish and strength of the tank.