Supplementing water used in the various setting through rainwater harvesting including agriculture, household and domestic use, commercial and industrial uses is important. There are various ways of harvesting rainwater with rooftop water harvesting being the most common way. The major rainwater harvesting benefit is provision of water for later use when there is water scarcity or contaminated water and helps individuals enhance their water self-sufficiency. Economic enhancement, as well as environmental conservation, is greatly enhance by rainwater harvesting. Harvesting of rainwater from a rooftop is made possible by use of gutters which collects the water as discharges it in a collection point.
Various types of materials are used in the making of rainwater tanks where the rainwater collected is usually stored. Rainwater tanks can be made of plastic, concrete, fiberglass, aluminum metal, and stainless steel which should be resistant to rust and other chemical reaction. The type of material used in making the rainwater tank usually depends on the durability as well as the affordability of the materials. Concrete rainwater tanks are usually more durable than the other tanks although rainwater tanks more preferred are those made of plastic materials. Underground placement or aboveground placement are two major ways in which rainwater tanks are set to collect and store water. It is a little hard to fit underground rainwater tanks with taps or valve, so water has to be pumped from the tanks so as to use it.
Rainwater tanks should be covered at all times leaving just a small hole where the pipe discharging water can pass through so as to avoid unwanted materials from dropping into the water. Plastic rainwater tanks are more preferred since they are readily available and come in different sizes according to one’s specification. Plastic rainwater tanks should be placed on a concrete surface so as to avoid algae growth. The plastic rainwater tanks if possible should be placed in a place where they are not exposed to the solar since they a greatly affected by solar radiation which reduces their durability. Rainwater tanks made from other materials can contain contaminated water unfit for human use hence safety measures should be put in place when using them.
Harvested rainwater usually have a lot of contaminants hence should be sterilized for human consumption. The contaminants come about as a result of many settling on the rooftop hence find their way into the harvested rainwater. Some techniques for removing contaminants from the rainwater to make it safe for drinking is by chlorination as well as filtration. Chlorination is usually preferred since it is not a costly method and it is also effective in sterilization. Loads of contaminants usually settle on the rooftop hence it is important to ensure that water is not harvested during the first rain so that the contaminants cannot find their way into the rainwater tank.
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