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Borehole storage tank requirements?


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Hi, we are building our new house in Kintyre and have installed a borehole.  Our contractor says this water supply can be connected directly to our home (via the usual treatment systems of course).  The water has been tested and there are some treatments recommended before it gets to the house, such as manganese and hard water.  These are being done via a backwash at the borehole itself.  The water is to be pumped from the borehole along a pipe to our home.  We are happy with the contractor's recommendations as he has done this kind of work a million times but Environmental Health are insisting we install a 1000 - 1500l storage tank as a back up in case of power cuts (which would stop the water from being pumped), or the source drying up or something else.  We do not expect the water to ever dry up from a borehole in this area and if the electricity fails (which happens a lot around here) we will have a generator in place.  We do not feel the storage tank is necessary, apart from the fact that there is nowhere to put it!   It would be too heavy to put in the attic space.  Any water coming into the house would have to pass through the tank first as we are not permitted to store pre-treated water.  Does anyone else have experience of this and what solutions have they found?  Many thanks

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I would ask them where this requirement comes from.  Our supplier basically connected the pump to house via a 50l buffer and the treatment package.

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I think I will question it again, but I have already had a couple of conversations, and sent a couple of emails, to Environmental Health about this and they are simply insisting that a storage tank must be installed.  The silly thing is, if we were to instal this tank (where, God knows), it would provide about three days water, which means it would be three days before we knew there was a problem with the water at the borehole (like it had dried up, or the equipment had failed), which would actually be a bad thing!  Better to know straight away if there is a problem.

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There would be ways of identifying a problem with the borehole before the tank runs out but if it's as reliable as you think then I can understand your perspective. I have seem a number of boreholes dry up during dry summers recently so make sure you're assesment of reliability is robust.

 

The EHOs requirement sounds strange though. UV filters and backwashing filters need power so even if you store untreated water, how would it be treated in a power cut?

 

Secondly, a tank would only work in a power cut if there was enough head in it to gravity feed the house (as you wouldn't be able to pump) so in the region of 10m above the highest house outlet to get ~1 bar. Is that feasible?

 

We have a big tank, but our water comes from a burn so it's needed for balancing.

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I think I see their logic.

Without detailed analysis of the aquifer, the certainty of supply and quality might be in some doubt. Proving it would cost more than  a tank.

Plus, if there was any problem with supply, a tank allows for filling from a visiting bowser, giving you a few day's supply.

Having looked into this recently (tank needed for feeding from a spring), the tank isn't too expensive, but it all ads up.

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The obvious things are.

 

Having a stored capacity doesn't buy you time when a pump fails, as you may not know the pump has failed until you have used the contents of the storage.

 

No power, no transfer/booster pump, no UV sterilisation.  Either you can't transfer to house even if you could it's not safe to drink.

 

Why are environmental health involved, they only need to get involved when you register the borehole abstraction.  They shouldn't be involved in the supply of a single house system design.  If you are supplying s less than 50 people there is no risk assessment required.

 

Go into the requirements page of your local council, see what that says.

 

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This is all very interesting and useful.  Environmental Health are involved as part of the planning process, apparently.  They needed to sign off the proposed new water supply in order for us to get permission, and their conditions included the installation of a storage tank to be used in emergencies.  Of course, as you say, the water in the tank would not be treated so I don't see how it could be used to drink and it would still need to be pumped to the house somehow.  I will definitely go back to Planning/Environmental Health and ask for the regulation.  Thanks guys.

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Can you use a pressure vessel to store the water.

It may be called an accumulator. Usually used to flatten out pressure fluctuations when load is greater than inflow can cope with.

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