Concrete Tanks – Your FAQ Guide

**Please note Versatile Tanks DO NOT repair water tanks**

A container for storing liquid, a water tank – often made of concrete but also manufactured from plastic, fibreglass, stone or steel – can be a vital part of the community.

Providing storage of water for everything from drinking to fire suppression or food preparation, water tanks can also prove a safe and efficient way to help developing countries to store clean water.

Made in a seamless mould to ensure no leaks, concrete tanks come with structural lids and a 600x 600mm man hole. Manufactured for easy installation for builders, excavators or plumbers, tanks like this are designed to be modular and sit tightly next to each other.

The great thing is, concrete water tanks can be customised to suit a customers’ own needs, and with everything from recycled water tanks to black water storage tanks on offer, the possibilities really are endless.

To help you when it comes to choosing the right water tank and understanding its unique benefits, we’ve compiled a definitive guide to the water-storing installations to ensure you have an answer to all your burning questions. Read on…

Why Choose a Concrete Water Tank?

We’ll start with the most important question: ‘why have a concrete water tank installed in the first instance?’ If you’re wondering what the benefits of a concrete water tank are, it really all comes down to durability.

Providing the safest option, concrete water tanks – unlike their plastic counterparts – will withstand bushfires. And while metal tanks will perform generally quite well, concrete tanks are even better.

Keeping your water cooler, concrete tanks are proven to be free from algae, cryptosporidium and Legionnaires disease, too.

Naturally reducing the acidity in rainwater, concrete tanks can be placed in the ground to maximise your land area and boost the cooling of your water. Offering healthier drinking water, they can be made to any dimension as well – and it’s worth knowing that the bigger the tank, the less it’ll cost you per litre of water harvested.

At a glance, here’s a few reasons you should choose a concrete water tank for your business:

Concrete Can’t Be Set on Fire – It’s well worth knowing – particularly if you’re in Australia, where bush fires are rife – that concrete can’t be set on fire. The reason for that is it’s made of non-combustible materials, including cement and water. It doesn’t emit toxic fumes either, and neither does it produce smoke. Did you know also that a concrete fire tank won’t drop molten particles when it’s exposed to fire? Keep yourself and your employees safe with a concrete fire tank and you’ll sleep easy at night.

Concrete Has a Slow Rate of Heat Transfer – An effective fire shield between adjacent spaces, concrete is a great material for your water tank as it has a slow rate of heat transfer. Aside from this, it won’t cause damage to any internal concrete.

It’s Durable – Lasting years longer than its plastic, steel or fibreglass counterparts, concrete is a great option for anyone wanting to save money while still enjoying a good, reliable product.

When to Replace Concrete Water Tanks

When you’re investing such a large sum of money into a water tank, it’s certainly worth knowing how long it’ll last before you need to replace it. If you’re wondering when to change concrete water tanks, you’ll be glad to discover that, in many cases, it’s much more cost-effective to repair them than out-and-out replace them.

In repairing your water tank, you’re reducing the amount of disruption your business might encounter as a result of having a tank completely replaced.

How to Seal Concrete Water Tanks

If you’re wondering how to seal your concrete water tank, the answer is ‘relatively easily’. The leakage of water or contaminants into the community can cause serious problems, which is why it’s important to put measures in place to stop leaks from occurring.

Eventually cracking due to curing, shrinkage, settling or seismic activity, concrete is certainly not invincible. That said, it’s the preferred option of most of our clients as, in terms of durability, concrete’s the very best material out there.

You can reduce the likelihood of cracks by planning ahead to avoid future issues. Concrete waterproofing systems are provided by concrete tanks companies like ourselves and can offer a whole host of benefits.

They can be provided as liquid membranes applied by spray, roller or trowel, or as self-adhering, rubberised asphalt sheet membranes or barriers. You could also look out for cementitious products which can be mixed with water and applied with a brush.

Built-up systems – in which layers of hot asphalt are alternated with perforated felt layers – are also another option, as is sodium bentonite, a clay-like material which can be applied to the outside of your tank.

While it can be difficult to know where to begin when choosing the correct waterproofing system, rest assured that you can still settle on a reliable solution.

How to Repair Concrete Water Tanks

Like it or not, your concrete water tank could develop cracks over time – but how do you go about repairing them?

Have you asked yourself: ‘how do I repair cracks in concrete water tanks?’ Well, read on for the answer…

Cracks can be seen to quickly and efficiently and you’ll need a wire brush, chisel, hammer, concrete bonding agent, hydraulic cement, water, a bucket and an electric drill. Alongside those essentials, you’ll also require a mixer drill bit, trowel, epoxy, paint roller, hammer drink, liner anchors, and tank liner.

So, what do you do to repair the tank then?

  • Start by ordering a tank liner from a liner manufacturer, considering the dimensions you need and ensuring you choose a liner which is rated as food-grade level rubber
  • Now, completely drain the tank and clean out the crack. Remove any dirt with your wire brush and discard any loose concrete found around the crack. You can do this with the chisel but be very careful not to do this directly in the crack itself as this could cause it to spread
  • Brushing a layer of concrete bonding agent into and surrounding the crack, cover the entire surface before waiting a few minutes for it to dry. The area must no longer be wet but will be a little tacky to the touch; wait until it gets to this stage before moving on
  • Next, grab your bucket and mix one part hydraulic cement with three parts water, using the electric drill with the mixer paddle attached
  • Now, using the trowel, press the cement into the crack and fill it completely, before scraping over the surface with the trowel’s tilted edge. This will make it even with the concrete that surrounds it. Next, simply remove any excess cement and allow the area to dry. This should take around an hour
  • Coating the entire interior of the water tank with epoxy – this serves as an adhesive for the liner – grab your paint roller and roll the resin onto the concrete
  • Starting at the middle of the tank, install the liner in the tank’s interior, pressing firmly on the liner itself to help it adhere to the concrete
  • Now, unfold the liner and spread it across the bottom of the tank and up the sides of the installation
  • Drill holes into the concrete (where the steel reinforced holes on the liner’s edge are found) using the hammer drill. You’ll now want to inject epoxy into the concrete holes to hold the anchors in place, before passing them through the steel reinforced liner holes into the concrete holes. This will hold the liner in place
  • Finally, give the epoxy time to dry, before refilling your tank.

How Much Are Concrete Water Tanks?

By now you’re probably wondering: ‘how much does a concrete water tank cost?’, and vitally, ‘is it worth installing one?’

They’ve been used in rural areas for years but they’re also becoming more common in the city – but will a water tank represent a good investment for you?

Collecting large volumes of water in properties which are tight on space, concrete water tanks aren’t cheap but they’ll solve a multitude of problems. Installation cost depends on a few factors, so it really is worth getting in touch for an estimate.

In terms of cost, the pre-cast concrete tank itself can prove more expensive than other options out there, but you’ll be saving money in the long-run by choosing one. A long-term investment, concrete water tanks – if installed underground – also don’t take up any valuable space on or around the property.

Extremely durable and purpose-built, concrete water tanks can last up to 30 years, with a really good one lasting even longer. Why not obtain a no-obligation quote and see if a concrete water tank will offer some benefits to your business?

Want to Install a Concrete Water Tank?

Considering installation of a concrete water tank? It’s a smoother process than you might think. If you have any more questions not covered in this guide, get in touch with the Versatile Tanks team and we’d be more than happy to help.

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