Protect Your Home and Business from Wildfires

wildfire-568617_640Over 600,000 acres have burned in wildfires in Washington State this fire season and 5,100 homes are currently threatened.

Fire is a frightening concept, but an unfortunate reality. In rural areas, away from municipal resources, a water tank used strictly for fire suppression may be the only way to protect your family, farm, house, or business.

An exterior wildfire suppression system includes an array of sprinklers supplied by a water source. If there is no natural w
ater source, a water storage tank designated as the source of water supply can make the difference in protection. Sprinklers attached to the roof and around the perimeter of the building are meant to saturate and create humidity. The idea is to soak the property’s vegetation and roof of the home.

The amount of time a system will run depends on amount of water available. A system with 30,000 gallons of storage can prodsteel tanksuce 30 gallons a minute for 16.6 hrs. If used with a wetting agent, the solution will stay intact for a longer period. Having a source of water designated for fire protection can be an investment that could save your home.

RainBank Rainwater Systems has been installing corrugated steel water tanks for over 15 years and recognizes the benefit of onsite water storage for wildfire protection. The National Fire Protection Association provides codes and standards for fire protection that are available for free for online viewing.

Through its Fire Adapted Communities Program, the NFPA offers information and specific actions you can take, to lower your risk in the event of a wildfire. Take a look to learn about how you can protect your home and your community from the devastation of wildfires.

Standards Set for Stormwater Collection

a-small-waterfall-143194_640 Standards. They are the benchmarks we use to help us make decisions about the food we eat, the cars we purchase, the schools we choose and the water we use.

The American Rainwater Catchment Systems Association (ARCSA) and the American Society of Plumbing Engineers (ASPE) have jointly developed a Stormwater Harvesting Standard, which received American National Standards (ANSI) approval.

This new standard offers direction on how to safely apply stormwater collection for direct end-use applications.

“The American Society of Plumbing Engineers (ASPE) is pleased to announce that ARCSA/ASPE/ANSI 78-2015: Stormwater Harvesting System Design for Direct End-Use Applications was approved as an American National Standard by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) on August 3, 2015”

The standard is set to offer a secure alternate to utility-provided water and to elevate stormwater use to decrease reliance on the aging infrastructure afflicting many municipal water systems.

“Use of the standard will ensure that consumers are not at risk from poor design, installation, maintenance, or illegal work and that the stormwater catchment system will assist in maintaining and enhancing the quality of the environment while assisting compliance with the intent of relevant regulations and government officials.”

Read more about the standard here.

RainBank is proud to be a lifetime member of ARCSA and applauds its ongoing efforts to set and maintain standards for rainwater harvesting.

How To Keep Stored Rainwater Clean

fresh-839260_640Compared to surface water, rainwater is relatively clean to begin with. It is what rainwater comes in contact with that requires attention. Dust, pollen, organic materials, such as leaves and pine needles greatly affect the quality of stored rainwater.

Filtering out this debris upstream from storage should be included in your rainwater harvesting system. A high quality gutter screen is recommended as a first line of defense against debris, while it also keeps your gutters clean.

The use of downspout filters, or vortex filters, will improve the quality of your stored water by filtering and aerating rainWFF100-Vortex Filter_RainBankwater before it enters the storage tank. Removal of large particulate along with aeration greatly reduces the amount of harmful bacteria entering the storage tank. A downspout filter or vortex filter acts as first flush device and aerates the water and will not freeze as other first flush devices.

A smoothing inlet installed inside the bottom of the tank distributes the incoming water horizontally and prevents stirring up the sediments while aerating the water as it enters the tank. Aeration happens with each collection cycle and helps keep a healthy bio film at the bottom of the tank. There are beneficial microbes in the sediment that actually eat bacteria as they sink to the bottom. A healthily maintained bio film enhances the water quality in storage.

To prevent backup in the system during heavy rains, the storage tank should always include an overflow device. The overflow device allows water to overflow, but protects water quality in the storage tank with back flow prevention and vermin protection while also providing a skimming during overflow of buoyant debris, such as pollen, on the water surface.

Finally, a floating suction ensures the water being provided to the pressure pump and filtration is the cleanest water from the storage tank. Since all harvested rainwater is filtered before entering the tank, the floating filter should never clog, but will instead take water from just below the surface. Water at this depth is of the highest quality in the tank, because any particulate that enters the tank either floats on the surface or settles to the bottom. The floating filter acts as an uptake point for the pump than a filter; thus, the floating filter should never require maintenance.

RainBank Rainwater Systems is a dealer of Wisy and the Four Step System to ensure quality, collected rainwater.