What is the difference between steel and plastic water tanks?

There are a number of important differences between steel and plastic (polyethylene) water tanks:

  • Steel water tanks are 100% UV-proof. This means they will not degrade in sunlight. Plastic water tanks (polyethylene) are affected by ultraviolet light and will break down over time.
  • Steel water tanks can be built to most dimensions, so your tank can fit perfectly in any available space, maximizing the amount of rainwater you can harvest.  Plastic water tanks are only made in a small range of sizes.
  • The strength of steel water tanks means they will not bulge or stretch when full of water. As a result, our Slimline tanks use considerably less space on your property than plastic tanks.
  • Steel is the most environmentally friendly material for water tanks. Not only are they fully recyclable, but also the environmental impact of steel water tank production is less than tanks made from any other material.
  • Steel water tanks offer an aesthetic alternative to plastic. The iconic steel water tank is often specified by architects to add a design element to new homes and renovations. They are also available in a range of Colorbond® colours.

 

What size water tanks should I install?

The general rule is to install as large a tank as possible. The bigger the tank, the less it costs per litre of water harvested. The optimum size of a water tank is governed by a number of factors:

  • Available space on your property.  This includes any restrictions to site access like fences, retaining walls, trees, air conditioning units, etc.
  • Intended use of the harvested rainwater. When used as a complementary water source (where the property is also serviced by mains water) it is important to consider the intended use of the harvested rainwater. A lot more water is required for watering lawns and gardens and topping up pools than for flushing toilets and filling washing machines (see “Cycle of Usage” notes below).
  • Size of the catchment area. This refers to the total roof space used to catch rainwater.  As roofs are generally comprised of sections, the catchment area is determined by the roof sections that service the downpipes directed to the water tank. The larger the catchment area, the smaller the water tank that is required, as it will fill more often.

Cycle of Usage
This refers to how often the harvested water in a rainwater tank is used and replenished by rain events. The most efficient use of rainwater, from a conservation perspective, is to use it as a complementary water source for flushing toilets and filling washing machines. This can account for a large portion of water usage inside your home.

By using rainwater in this way, your water tank is frequently being depleted, then topped up each time it rains. If rainwater is used infrequently, it will just overflow to the stormwater drain at each rain event.
 

How much water can I catch?

The size of the catchment area will determine the amount of rainwater harvested with each rain event.  One millimetre of rain will harvest 1 litre of rainwater for every 1 square meter of catchment area (roof space).

For example, if you have a catchment area of 50 square meters, you will catch 500 litres of rainwater whenever you receive 10mm of rain.  (Keep in mind we generally experience about 10-20% loss; so it might actually be about 400 litres per 10mm of rain).

You can use our Rainwater Catchment Calculator to estimate your rain catchment potential.

 

Where is the best location to put a water tank?

This is governed by a number of factors:

  • Slope of the site. The most suitable site will be on level ground, away from retaining walls. Extra installation expense may be incurred if your site needs to be excavated to make a level foundation.
  • Downpipe location. You should aim to connect as many downpipes to feed your tank as is practical. The closer the water tank is to your downpipes, the more efficient the water harvesting system will be. If downpipes need to be diverted and run horizontally over long distances then the installation expense will increase and the efficiency of the system may be compromised.
  • Aesthetics.  While a well-positioned water tank can add a design element to your home, most people are not likely to install a water tank where it is highly visible. This is an important consideration.
  • Proximity to laundry or toilets. Where a water tank is used to feed a toilet or washing machine, a licensed plumber must install it. Again, the shorter the run of pipe work from the tank site to the internal appliance, the less expense will be incurred in installation.


Can I drink the water from my water tank?

Kingspan Water tanks are made from a food-grade AS4020 certified material, so they can be used for storage of potable water. There are filtration devices available that can help to safeguard your tank water is safer for drinking. Please contact us if you have more specific questions about water filtration.
 

Do Kingspan Water Tanks comply with BAL (Bushfire Attack Level) rated properties?

Yes. Kingspan's water tanks comply with any of the BAL rated properties.  Capacities and connections will vary depending on the property size and reticulated mains water available in construction areas
 

Are Kingspan Water Tanks made in Australia?

Yes. All Kingspan Water Tanks are made in Australia. We use Bluescope Steel and fabricate our water tanks in our own factory spread across Australia. Our customers can rest assured knowing that we fully control the quality of the product from manufacturing to installation.
 

What kind of base does the water tank need?

 

StandConcrete Paver BaseConcrete BaseCrusher Dust Base
Stand BaseStand BaseStand BaseStand Base
Stand construction must be certified as strong enough to support the tank’s weight. Consult a structural engineer to ensure the construction and footing is sufficient for the tank. The top of the stand must be flat, smooth and level. Tank stands may be made with varying leg lengths to accommodate a sloping site. Kingspan Water tank stands are available to suit a range of tanks. To use a concrete paver base, the area must be cleared down to firm earth. A paver base installed on soft ground (i.e. a garden bed) will subside over time, and is not advisable. Once dug down to a firm surface, spread sand and cement mix 75mm thick over the entire base, level out then proceed to place concretepavers flat on top. Once laid, shower the pavers with water to set the sand and cement off. Paver base is to be large enough to support all edges of the tank. Tank may be placed on to paver base straight away. Do not fill tank above 2 corrugations for at least 48 hours. A concrete slab base is the most suitable base for your AQUAPLATE®rainwater tank. Construction of a concrete base needs a minimum of 100mm thick concrete and F62 mesh, on a flat level area. If the tank is to be positioned in an area that is on a slope then the thickness of the slab is to be increased and the mesh to be a higher grade. The slab must be flat, smooth and level. Finish with a metal trowel is advisable. Slabs must be large enough to support all edges of the tank, and should be at least 100mm longer and wider than the tank. Slabs must be allowed to cure for at least five days prior to placing tank on slab. Crusher dust bases are only suitable for larger diameter round tanks. The crusher dust must have no particles larger than 5mm diameter. The crusher dust is to be 100mm thick. It must be compacted, level and flat. A border must be placed around the crusher dust to ensure it does not erode over time or is undermined by heavy rain or burrowing animals. The base should be large enough to support all edges of the tank. Tank may be filled straight away. Coarse aggregate should be spread over any exposed crusher dust, after the tank is positioned, to prevent erosion.

Note: Care must be taken when positioning the tank on a crusher dust base to ensure it does not dig in and create an uneven surface.