As a long-time staple in rural and suburban homes, the humble water tank has seen many families through warm south east Queensland summers, especially as water now costs more here than it does in Sydney. For those seeking to protect not just the environment, but their hip pocket, a rainwater tank is an investment that quickly pays for itself in more ways than one. By reducing your reliance on mains water, you could be saving substantially on your bills, but also help to make your community water supplies last longer. Bathrooms and laundries use more water than any other room in the house, so even using rainwater for your washing machine and showers can help your home become more self-sustaining and keep costs down. Just 20mm of rain on a 100m2 roof area can net you more than 2000 Litres!
But what if you live in an urban area? It might not seem possible to enjoy the benefits of harvesting that precious rainwater if you live in a house with a smaller backyard, but clever placement or concealment could be all you need.
The ‘Blind Side’
A good spot that works for many people would usually be on a side of your property that is not regularly used or seen. Think around where your washing line is or around the corner from any outdoor entertaining areas, or a slim design tank installed along the side of the house. Just make sure to check with your local council first for any regulations to do with property boundaries or height restrictions before installation, so that you don’t end up in hot water!
Keep in mind that you can also partially or completely bury your tank. You will still need to be able to access it for maintenance and cleaning, but it’s a great option for reducing or eliminating their height above ground if you’re low on space. It could be placed underneath a driveway or a path so you can maximise your backyard space for playing with the kids and pets. Atlantis Matrix tanks are an excellent eco-friendly choice for an underground tank. They are made with 85% recycled materials and can be custom-sized to suit your property.
Under a Deck
Though it might require more pipework, you don’t always have to have your tank right beside your house. If you have space below your deck you aren’t making use of, you could install a water tank below and enjoy all the benefits of getting your water for free from the sky—as nature intended.
Screen and Conceal
Many new tanks come in sleek, modern Colorbond steel that can match your house’s colour scheme perfectly, but you can also paint your tank to help it not stand out so much. Consider where the tank is located, like whether you want it to match the fence it sits against, or a colour that will help it camouflage behind some greenery. You can also install decorative screens around your tank, even training creeper vines along them for a stunning natural feature.
If you’ve been on the fence about getting a water tank don’t get hung up on appearances when there are so many solutions. With thoughtful placement or simply hiding it in plain sight, having a rainwater tank in an urban setting is much more achievable than you might think. Kingspan Rainwater Tanks are a great place to get started, and you can order one, complete with installation, online through Eco Sustainable House.