Rainwater tanks

Rainwater tanks are a great way to save on your water bills. The collection of rainwater is a system that can be of great benefit to the environment. But any plumbing system that collects and stores water needs to be maintained, and the rainwater tank is one such system that is often out of sight, so out of mind.

But an alarming news story aired on Channel 9 last Friday stated new research has found the Aedes aegypti mosquito has been discovered in a number of towns in the Wide Bay region, and close to Brisbane.

This mosquito is the culprit for infectious diseases including dengue, Zika, chikungunya and yellow fever.

With the cold and flu season upon us, the last threat we need is that of dengue fever.

The most common areas for mosquitoes to breed are near water supplies and CSIRO are urging all rainwater tank owners within Brisbane to look at their rainwater tank systems to prevent an outbreak of dengue fever.

Research has shown the last epidemic for dengue fever in Brisbane was when there was a lot of use of unsealed water tanks.

It’s important to check the current state of your water tank and fix these issues if found during your inspection.

1. Check the mesh sieves into and from your rainwater tank

The mesh barrier at the top of your rainwater tank should be intact and have no penetrations. Any holes will attract mosquitoes. Replace the mesh to keep mozzies out of your tank.

2. Clean all gutters and downpipes

Leaf matter attracts mosquitoes as this is their food source. Remove the food and the mozzies won’t come looking for a home. Ensure your gutters and downpipes are free from all leaf debris. It’s important to clean your gutters twice a year.

3. Inspect the tank and check for holes or penetrations

Any penetrations or open holes into the tank are an uninvited entry waiting to happen. Replace or fix broken rainwater tanks. Your plumber can give you a quote on the cost to replace and install a split rainwater tank.

4. Check your first flush device

Your first flush device, connected to the outlet of the water tank should be flushed every 3 months. A biannual inspection can check for malfunctions and the possibility of mosquito presence.

5. Treat the water

To prevent mosquitoes from breeding in the water tank, the rainwater can be treated. This will stop mosquitoes laying eggs and kill any larvae already present in the tank.

Rainwater tank maintenance is a Salmon Plumbing speciality. The next time you book a call out, why not get our plumber to check the state of your rainwater tank system? It could be vital for your health and those living in the wider Brisbane community.