For many Australians, leaving behind a busy and stressful life in the city for a quieter and more relaxed one in a rural area is an appealing option. The wide open spaces, the lack of close neighbours and a simpler and more natural life are all part of the appeal. For many people, living in the country means embracing a more 'off-grid' lifestyle which isn't reliant on outside providers for living needs.
One of the key elements to creating a self-sustained home is ensuring that you have an adequate water supply. Unless you have a clean and constantly flowing river through your rural property, this will generally involve installing water tanks of some kind. Rainwater provides a great, natural and fresh supply of water for your home, but you'll need to ensure that you set up your tank properly from the start to get maximum benefit from it.
Here are two tips to creating a successful and plentiful rainwater tank setup.
1. Choose the right sized tank
If you're relying solely on your rainwater tank water to provide your rural home with water, then you'll need to ensure that you choose a tank that has sufficient storage capacity. The exact volume of the tank you'll need will depend on the number of occupants living in your home, which water using appliances you have and whether you also need to provide water for livestock.
It's better to err on the side of caution and choose a larger tank than you think you need. Having too much water isn't usually considered a problem but running out certainly is. A tank with a larger capacity will also keep you well supplied with water through the drier months when rainfall is scarce or even non-existent.
2. Install a water monitoring system
Nothing is quite as disheartening on a rural property than turning on a tap only to discover that you've run out of water. It's easy to assume that checking the water levels of your tank regularly will keep you informed about how much water you have left, but it's a task that's easily forgotten or overlooked.
An excellent solution is to automate your tank's water level monitoring. This involves installing a wireless water monitoring system when your water tank is installed. The sensor that is located inside the tank communicates with a small LCD display module and can tell you how much water your tank has at the press of a button.
Monitoring systems can also be setup to alert you when the water levels drop to certain capacities. It can also be used to give you an accurate gauge of your daily water consumption and how successful your attempts at conserving water are.