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What are water tanks used for?

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Water tanks are a handy installation for storing water on both a domestic and industrial scale.

In this blog, we will explore what water tanks are, what they’re made from, and what they can beused for.

What’s a water tank?

As the name suggests, a water tank is a vessel for collecting and storing potable and non-potable water and other liquids including pesticides.

Potable water refers to water safe for consumption that comes from ground sources such as wells and reservoirs. Rainwater is not safe for drinking.

They are available in a variety of sizes, shapes, and materials, for water and other liquidsacrossdomestic and many other industries.

What are water tanks made from?

Water tanks come in different materials, each with specificuses and benefits.

Galvanised steel water tanks

Able to hold hundreds of thousands of litres of potable, or non-potable water, galvanised steel water tanks are long-lasting and robust due to their galvanised coating and inner poly-lining that prevents rust and corrosion.

Depending on what the tank will store and where it’ll be installed, these tanks have a life expectancy of 30 years.

In addition to water, these tanks can hold water for irrigation and firefighting.

Galvanised tanks can store chemicals like pesticides too. However, this will affect the tank’s longevity compared to one holding potable water as the chemicals contained within could react with the materials of the tank.

Steel water tanks are often found on farms and large industrial settings as they can hold between 5,000 and 768,000 litres of water.

As they’re made from steel, galvanised steel water tanks are much more expensive than plastic ones but do last much longer

Plastic water tanks

Durable and easy to transport, plastic water tanks are a popular investment that is perfect for storing rain, pesticides, and potable, or drinking water.

Typically constructed from high-quality HDPE (high-density polypropylene), plastic tanks effectively protect potable or non-potable water against harmful bacteria and resist corrosion.

Plastic water tanks come in a variety of shapes, including vertical and horizontal, so there’s a tank to fit any space.

Water tanks made from plastic are typically used in domestic settings as they can be damaged by heavy impacts, unlike steel tanks.

In homes, they’re used for rainwater harvesting, storing drinking water, and flushing toilets.

What could I use a water tankfor?

Water tanks have different uses across many sectors, from agriculture to domestic practices.

Read on to explore how different industries use water tanks.

Agriculture uses

Water tanks are used in the agricultural industry for a multitude of reasons.

Fire suppression

During the summer, crop and livestock fields become incredibly dry, making them susceptible to catching fire.

If fires occur, rainwater collected in a water tank is readily available to suppress the flames – easily attaching to a hose tool to begin extinguishing the fire.

Galvanised steel water tanks are most suited to water storage for fire suppression as they can hold more significant volumes of water.


Rather than solely relying on direct rainfall, farmers will irrigate their fields – this is when a controlled volume of water is spread across the land to assist with crop growth.

The water used for irrigation is often rainwater that’s been collected and stored within a water tank.

The tank connects to a pipe that runs the water out to fields where it’s dispersed via pipe or sprinkler.

This recycled resource is highly beneficial during droughts when the soil needs replenishing.

Storing pesticides and fertilisers

Pesticides and fertilisers are important in agriculture – pesticides repel pests that damage crops and fertilisers promote plant growth.

Both can be stored in steel and MDPE plastic water tanks.

Domestic applications

Keeping a water tank in your home has many fantastic benefits.

Storing potable water

Drinking water can be kept in household water tanks. Remember, rainwater is not potable water as it may contain germs and other contaminants.

You should checkthat the plastic or galvanised steel water tank you intend to buy is designed for drinkable water storage, otherwise, it could contaminate it and make it unfit to drink.

Rainwater harvesting

Run-off rainwater that collects in tanks has many uses domestically. Rather than using mains water, rainwater can be recycled to water lawns and wash clothes.

Industrial practices

Water tanks are used in industry for a multitude of reasons. As well as fire suppression and storing potable drinking water for employees, water tanks are perfect for many other uses.

Toilet flushing

Typically, remoteand brand-new building sites don’t have functioning plumbing yet – instead, staff use port-a-loos. Stored water flushes these temporary facilities, which aren’t connected to the main piping.

Liquid transportation

Water tanks are perfect for storing liquid chemicals and transporting liquids from place to place.

Invest in a water tank todayand contact Cotterill Civils

Water tanks have so many practical uses.

Whether in industry, agriculture, or domestically, liquidstorage is an efficient way of storing and transportingliquids and helps to recycle water, preserving natural resources.

For more advice on water tanks and which material is suitable for your application, get in touch with Cotterill Civils, drainage specialists.

We’re a reliable supplier of civils across Britain, with over 25years of experience.

You can speak to our professionals by calling 01213513230 or filling in our online enquiry form and we’ll be in touch as soon as we can.

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