Question What size rain water tank?

Discussion in 'Energy' started by Steve, May 3, 2015.

  1. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    Clever move... Town water is very handy if you're lucky enough to have it on acreage. We have town water also, but our water bill is very low because we use our tank and bore first for watering etc but town water has saved our plants/trees several times over the past decade.
    I wish I had a pool :blah: especially on days like today! :heat:
    How's your treatment plant going? Working well?
     
  2. Steve

    Steve Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Yeah mate, it seems to be working very well.
    They say you can tell if it's working if you can't smell it.
    Ours is a massive concrete cylindrical tank buried in the ground with only the top poking out. When I stand on top of it I can't smell a thing. Amazing really considering what's going on just under my feet.

    The only thing that annoys me about it is it needs to have a air pump constantly on. So from a power usage point of view it's not the best but I think it is extremely efficient by the looks of my last power bill. We have solar so at least during the day it's running for free.

    Last week I noticed a smell when working in the back yard so the first thing I did was go have a sniff of my tank but there was no smell. It ended up being the neighbours system giving off the smell. I think their's is sick, that is, the bacteria has probably been killed by something that went down the drain like something anti-bacterial. That will do it. All you need to do if that happens is throw some yoghurt down the drain and the bacteria starts up again. Amazing.
     
  3. OskarDoLittle

    OskarDoLittle Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Very cool...sorry if you've already listed this elsewhere, but can you explain a bit more about your treatment system? I've had some interesting conversations (though possibly not completely appropriate for the setting) with friends over dinner about various sewerage systems for going off grid. So I'm always interested in what other people finds works well.
     
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  4. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    Yeah the new ones are power efficient but the old ones were awful power guzzlers!

    Ours is a two tank system with everything going into the first tank where it separates the solids from the liquid then pumps the liquid into the second tank where it's treated with chlorine tablets before being pumped into the garden.

    The solids get eaten by bacteria and the sludge gets removed/pumped out about every 8-10 years. A sewage truck comes around and sucks it out in about 30 mins costs about $400.

    I really do love our mini treatment plant but over the past decade we've had a few pumps fail and one air pump also...

    We pay $300 per annum for the system to be serviced every 3 months - this is a council requirement. To help offset this cost our rates are slightly cheaper than a similar property that's connected to town sewage.
     
  5. Ash

    Ash Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    There's a difference between using water for the back yard/vege patch and using it for the main residence. 2,000L is a standard small backyard tank, which just caters for that purpose, but if your main house has water pumped into it for cooking, showering and washing hands, the water requirements skyrocket. Between drought periods, 20,000L will not take a family of 4 or 5 very far, so water rationing may need to be implemented. If there is a bore with decent water, that can alleviate this problem.
     
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  6. ClissAT

    ClissAT Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Yes Ash, when you think of 100lt per head per day it soon adds up.
    That amount is the standard for normal daily use set by municipal councils but in drought, it must drop first to 70lt per day per head.
    Then in sustained drought it must drop again to 50 or even 40lt per head per day.
    Very hard to achieve. I certainly have not had to do that for many a long year.
    These days I try to stick to 100lt/day & I ask my tenant(s) to do the same.
    In drought or very dry ends of the year such as now (here anyway) I ask the tenant to reduce down to 70lt/day as I do. I have a special dip stick marked off for 100lt/day down one side & 70lt/day down the other side.
    I have been burned with the false assumption that tanks that are full in Sep/Oct will be enough to get through to the next wet season.
    But as happened in 2014 the wet season never arrived & very soon I was almost out of water. I have 2x 25,000lt (5000gal) tanks to supply both my house & the cabin.
     
  7. David - coona

    David - coona Active Member Premium Member

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    We have a 5000gal tank for washing, shower, cooking, drinking for 4 people lasts us 6 months. Aquaponics system uses 5000gal a year. 1/4acre veg and fruit garden uses at least 25000gal per year
     
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