To ensure rainwater collected in your tank remains clean and fresh, it is important to properly maintain your tank. Rainwater tank maintenance recommended by the Australian Health Department involves inspecting inside your tank and cleaning out any sediment and organic matters that has accumulated at the base of your tank.
What is Tank Sludge?
Even with strainers, plant material, waste and sediment will still find their way to the bottom of your tank. Over time this turns into a layer of sludge which some say can be a breeding ground for harmful bacteria and dangerous to your family’s health.
Many assume this layer to be detrimental to tank water quality, yet there is growing dissent as new research reveals the biofilms in rainwater tanks appear to be highly effective at removing lead and other contaminants from the water column.
It is said that te microbial communities found in biofilms are predominantly harmless soil or environmental bacteria that consume other bacteria, nutrients and chemicals. Since rainwater tanks are a low nutrient environment, the biofilm is hungry which actually means it is good for preserving water quality.
Nonetheless, the Australian Department of Health states is the published, Guidance on use of rainwater tanks:
“In addition to six-monthly inspections, tanks should be inspected every 2-3 years for the presence of accumulated sediments. If the bottom of the tank is covered with sediment the tank should be cleaned.” (Chapter 6. Monitoring and Maintenance)
How to Clean Your Tank
One way to clean out your tank is to either hire a professional to do so, or purchase a rainwater tank cleaning pump to vacuum it all out. Doing it yourself can be both time-consuming and costly, while hiring a professional has its own expense.
Thankfully, a system exists that can automatically clean out any sediment building up inside your tank. TankVac’s self-cleaning system is a unique tank cleaning system with no movable parts. Best of all, it operates automatically without you and requires no power.
It works by creating an automatic vacuum that siphons debris and waste water from the base of the tank once your tank is full and water overflows. The powerful flow extracts the sediment and bacterial colonies on your tank floor, drawing out any sludge in the water at a rate of up to 9 litres per second.
TankVac is very easy to install and can be fitted by any handyman. While best to install with a new water tank, it can be retro-fitted even in a tank full of water.
While inspections are still advisable, installing this automatic cleaning solution means you no longer need to worry about having to clean out sludge or any sediment in your tank.