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Solar Powered Rain Water

Where

About this Project

The owner of this home in Leederville is environmentally aware and has passionately pursued this by introducing a two recycling water systems in his own home. One is a grey water system that captures used water from inside the home and the other is a rain water system that runs using a small solar panel!

These two systems are integrated into each other resulting in overall lower water consumption and reduced water bills.

In this not-so-standard design and installation we were able to bring the principles of water treatment and technology together to meet the client’s desire for sustainable water recycling at home. 

Installing rainwater tanks in leederville

Water tank

The water tank is a 1,100 litre poly slimline rain water tank that sits on a sand pad. It is plumbed directly to the homes gutters where rain run off is captured.  In this case the home was already built and water consumption is low so a smaller tank was suitable.

Location is important because water tanks can be unsightly. Fortunately this home had ample space down the side of the house and behind a car port where it now sits; out of sight and out of mind.

The tank is installed on a south facing wall where it is in full shade and heating throughout the day won’t effect the tank over time or the water quality.

In the installation picture you can see the large, white pvc pipe coming out of the top of the tank on the right side and leading directly to the drain below. That is the overflow pipe which manages water levels in wetter periods so the rest of the gutter down pipes can’t backlog with water. 

The box mounted on the wall is the grey water recycling system that is integrated into the home and to the rain water. 

Water tank

The water tank is a 1,100 litre poly slimline rain water tank that sits on a sand pad. It is plumbed directly to the homes gutters where rain run off is captured.  In this case the home was already built and water consumption is low so a smaller tank was suitable.

Location is important because water tanks can be unsightly. Fortunately this home had ample space down the side of the house and behind a car port where it now sits; out of sight and out of mind.

The tank is installed on a south facing wall where it is in full shade and heating throughout the day won’t effect the tank over time or the water quality.

In the installation picture you can see the large, white pvc pipe coming out of the top of the tank on the right side and leading directly to the drain below. That is the overflow pipe which manages water levels in wetter periods so the rest of the gutter down pipes can’t backlog with water. 

The box mounted on the wall is the grey water recycling system that is integrated into the home and to the rain water. 

Installing rainwater tanks in leederville
Solar panel powering a Perth rainwater system

Solar Power

Both the rain water and grey water systems are pressurised systems that have their own pumps which are traditionally plugged into mains power.

Here the owner wanted to go a step further and create a self-sustaining system. The solar panel is remarkably small and can efficiently run both pumps easily. It is fitted on the car port roof where it receives sun rays for 80% of the day.

The same principles underlying the solar power and recycling systems in this home apply to larger homes and projects. 

Grey Water

The second recycling system in this home is the grey water system which is plumbed to capture all used water from within the house. Grey water is different to black water which comes from the toilet and kitchen.

Black water, also called waste water has too high a concentration of harmful organic matter such as food, detergents and feces to safely be recycled in this type of system.

Once sediment and large particles are sieved out through a series of filters the grey water can be used to irrigate gardens and lawns. This is the first level of recycling grey water can be used for.

The smaller particles and organic materials are treated and removed via Ultraviolet light sterilisation of chlorination. This stage of great water treatment raises the quality of water so it safe to reuse in the laundry and in toilets.

For this home the grey water system is used to irrigate the gardens and plants via subsurface drip irrigation. It is also plumbed to the laundry washing machine and wash basin. This is instead of paying and using extra scheme water from Water Corporation.

Maintenance

The only maintenance this self-sufficient system needs is the occasional cleaning of the grey water filters. The owner is able to do this by removing the filters from the grey water box on the wall and hosing them down. In a well designed, closed grey water treatment system this is necessary once a year at most. 

Installing rainwater tanks in leederville
Installing rainwater tanks in leederville

Grey Water

The second recycling system in this home is the grey water system which is plumbed to capture all used water from within the house. Grey water is different to black water which comes from the toilet and kitchen.

Black water, also called waste water has too high a concentration of harmful organic matter such as food, detergents and feces to safely be recycled in this type of system.

Once sediment and large particles are sieved out through a series of filters the grey water can be used to irrigate gardens and lawns. This is the first level of recycling grey water can be used for.

The smaller particles and organic materials are treated and removed via Ultraviolet light sterilisation of chlorination. This stage of great water treatment raises the quality of water so it safe to reuse in the laundry and in toilets.

For this home the grey water system is used to irrigate the gardens and plants via subsurface drip irrigation. It is also plumbed to the laundry washing machine and wash basin. This is instead of paying and using extra scheme water from Water Corporation.

Maintenance

The only maintenance this self-sufficient system needs is the occasional cleaning of the grey water filters. The owner is able to do this by removing the filters from the grey water box on the wall and hosing them down. In a well designed, closed grey water treatment system this is necessary once a year at most.

 

Summary

Grey water, rain water and solar power was brought together in a simple design that worked within the existing site parameters. Whilst an unusual and interesting setup with the addition of the solar panel, the fundamental principles of water treatment were the same as many thousands of other grey water and rain water systems that we have installed across perth. 

Since completing this job we have introduced technologies that enable owners to automate their water consumption with high water efficiencies and better control throughout their homes and gardens. Whether it be a single dwelling residential water treatment system or a larger commercial system we are rely on the same principles of water treatment to design and install efficient and practical systems.

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Bore Water Treatment PErth

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3/14 Brolo Ct, O'Connor 6163, WA