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Building Water Tanks

Every family their own water supply.
  [vote for,

Form: A septic tank, a fresh water tank, a filtering system.

Function: Most of the water we use is recollected -- showering, bathing, dishwashing, laundry, and toilet flushing. Used water is sent to a septic tank. Water is filtered (both physically to get rid of grime, and with UV or other antibacterial) Every 3 months, just call the water people in to top off the tank (to replace water lost in drinking and washing the car), replace the filters, perform mundane maintenance, and scoop out the bottom of the tanks.

Pros: No need to rely on local water supply. (Possibly useful in california and other water-rationing states.) Creates jobs.

Cons: Could not use Draino or such, as you'd drink it later. Expensive ($10,000 or so to start, plus maybe $100 every 3 months for maintenance.). Not usable in large buildings.

Almafeta, Dec 13 2002


       Almafeta, do you do this in your own home using commercially available products which are packaged and sold for this very reason?
thumbwax, Dec 13 2002

       $10,000 for a complete home water reclamation system? That seems a little optimistic.
egnor, Dec 13 2002

       There are many people in the U.S. who are connected to neither municipal water nor sewage systems. If you could manage a system such as you describe for anything near the costs you mention, you'd be a millionaire,such people spend a lot more than $10,000 initial investment and $400/yearly.
supercat, Dec 13 2002

       I don't believe that any amount of filtration will render the water in a septic tank fit for human consumption - any small slip-up in the process, and you'll be making your family very unpleasantly sick.   

       From my understanding of sewage treatment, air and light are the important factors in rendering biological waste harmless. Your sludge can sit in the tank for all eternity, but you really won't want to drink it at the end, whatever filters you've got.   

       Now, you could install your own, personal sewage farm. You could also do something creative with aeration, ponds and turtles, but that would merely be tankifying what the Chinese have been doing for millennia with local streams.   

       More practically, you can collect rainwater for use, and you can safely recycle mildly used water for washing and the garden, and so on. Leave closed system recycling to the Fremen.
DrCurry, Dec 13 2002

       Consider this idea, insted of dealing with the septic tank water, let the sewer be the last stop. Reuse the bath water for the toilet, and bathing, watering the garden, washing the car, ect... Drink the city water (as if thats safe), using a similar filtration setup as you discribed should result in a large reduction of wasted water.
Chaos_5, Dec 14 2002

       That's sometimes called "grey water," [Chaos_5].
bristolz, Dec 14 2002

       Good idea for people off the infrastructure.   

       They do this in Australia some parts... Mini- bio-sludge treatment plants with clarifiers are sold there.   

       Might take some basic knowledge of wastewater treatment, but the water off the clarifier is ready for the fish pond, and the wasted sludge is good fertilizer.   

       Carefull not to dump too much clorox down the drain...
songpro, Jan 25 2003


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