1. Inlet leaf strainer.
This is a fine stainless steel mesh about the same size as your typical fly screen. The water passes through this strainer as it enters you tank and is located on the top of your tank. This strainer should be cleaned regularly to ensure it does not become blocked.
2. Tank Lid.
It is a good idea to keep leaf build-up and sticks etc off the lid of your tank. These can build up over time and add weight to the lid of your tank and also stain its appearance. Pot plants or other items should not be placed on the top of your tank.
3. External surfaces of tank.
While not necessary to clean the outside of your tank, the occasional hose off (with rainwater of course) is recommended to keep your tank looking at its best. This removes dust and dirt build up. Ensure to keep debris buildup away from the base/wall of your tank. Don’t allow dirt to buildup around the bottom lip.
4. Base area.
All tanks must be fully supported by a flat and level base. Keep the base area free from overgrowing weeds etc and inspect the base every 6 months to check for any movement or damage to the slab or pavers.
5. Sediment build up inside.
Over time your tank will build up a sediment layer on the bottom of the tank which is normal. This layer build up is dust that settles out of the water which has run off your roof and gutters. This is harmless and natural. It should not be disturbed or removed until the build-up reaches the tank outlet or approx 20 mm thick. This will take many years depending on the location and environment. Contact PJT Green Plumbing to arrange for us to come and clean this sediment layer out for you. Another option is to wait for your tank to be empty and then open the bottom valve (disconnect your pump if you have a pump installed) and with a hose through the removed inlet strainer you can stir up the sediment and allow it to run out. This will not do a 100% job but will remove most of the build-up.
6. Pump Systems.
Please refer to the operating instructions relevant to your pump. Make sure the area around the pump is free of weeds and doesn’t have water pooling around it.
7. Smelly water.
Some customers who have a lot of leaves in their gutters can sometimes have a smell from their tank. This is best dealt with by first ensuring the gutter and leaf strainer are clean and then by placing a small amount of chlorine in the tank to kill off the bacteria causing the smell. Best to use the tablets from a pool supplier but ensure you check with them the recommended dosage depending on your tank capacity. The chlorine will disinfect the water and then after a week or so most will be evaporated out of the water.
Most mozzies or wrigglers make their way into your tank from first breading in your sagging and leaf clogged gutters. They wash down the downpipe and are small enough to pass through the inlet strainer and into your tank. To treat your tank for this problem use the same method as described in Smelly water above.
9. Sediment Filters.
Sediment filters are required when tanks are connected to toilets. To open the filter housing you first need to isolate the water from the tank and the mains (if connected). Release pressure from the filter by turning on a tap or flushing the connected toilet. Unscrew the filter housing using the filter spanner, remove the filter and replace it with a new one. Re-fit the housing, slowly open up the water source/s and then turn off any taps which were turned on. This filter will need to be replaced every 6-12 months depending on usage.
10. Carbon Block Filters.
Carbon block filters are usually fitted when your tank is connected to the washing machine to remove any tannins or water discolouration. The replacement method is the same as a sediment filter above and it should also be replaced every 6-12 months. The carbon block filter will normally show its need for replacement by causing the water flow to slow down.
11. Leaf Eater Rainheads.
The rainheads (if installed) are usually located at the top of your downpipes. These have a wire mesh screen on a 45 degree slope and a secondary filter located internally of the rainhead. Both of these filters need to be checked regularly to ensure they are free of debris. To access the internal filter, remove the wire clips on each side and then remove the mesh and pull out the internal filter, rinse with water and re-fit.
12. First Flush Diverters.
If you have first flush diverters installed, occasionally unscrew the cap at the base of the diverter and remove the filter. Wash the filter with clean water. There is also a flow restrictor inside the cap which should be removed and washed. Re-fit the flow restrictor and filter and screw the cap back on.
Remember that regular maintenance will improve the water quality and extend the life of your system.
Click the link to download this maintenance guide as a pdf Maintenance of tanks