MAINTENANCE TIPS FOR RAINWATER HARVESTING STRUCTURES
- Always keep the surroundings of the rank clean and hygienic.
- Remove Algae from the roof tiles and asbestos sheets before the monsoon.
- Drain the tank completely and clean from inside thoroughly before the monsoon.
- Clean the water channels (gutters) often during rainy season and definitely before the first monsoon rain.
- Avoid first 15 or 20 minutes of rainfall depending on the intensity of rain. Use the first flush arrangement to drain off this first rain water.
- Change the filter media every rainy season.
- Cover all inlet and outlet pipes with closely knit nylon net or fine cloth or cap during non-rainy season to avoid entry of insects, worms and mosquitoes.
- Withdraw water from the system at the rate of 5 litres/head/day. This will ensure availability of water throughout the water scarcity period.
- Leakage of cracks in the ferrocement storage tank shall be immediately attended to by cement plastering. This will avoid major repairs due to the propagation of cracks.
- Heavy loads should not be applied on the lid, particularly many people should not stand on the lid.
- Water should not be allowed to stagnate in the collection pit.
- The tap should have lock system so that pilferage or waste of water is avoided.
- The filter materials shall be washed thoroughly before replacing in the filter bucket.
- The coconut coir in the filter unit definitely needs regular replacement in rainy season, because, in wet conditions it rots and spoils water quality.
- In coastal areas, the tank may be painted outside by corrosion resistant paint once in 3 years and in other areas lime (Calcium Carbonate) based white wash may be applied not only for beauty but also for cleanliness.
People may be educated by providing the above tips for maintenance of the system through pictures, handouts and wall posters. The implementing agency should visit the structures as a follow-up to monitor and motivate the users in the proper maintenance of the systems. there could be informal group discussions among the users on the maintenance aspects of the Roof top Rain Water Harvesting Systems.As a precautionary and preventive measure, the water from the storage tank may also be tested for the presence of disease causing micro-organism.But it is not practicable for a rural household to collect water samples and get them tested in nearby district centre on a regular basis. Therefore, this task may be taken up by the implementing agency as an immediate follow up of the construction of the systems. This helps the agency to find out the users' attention to the maintenance of the system as well as necessary awareness to be given on various maintenance aspects. Following section gives an idea of collection of water samples for testing and disinfection.
RULES AND REGULATIONS
- The CMDA is to admit/accord Planning Permission for multi-storied buildings/special buildings only if RWH is proposed.
- Now, all new buildings irrespective of size should have a proposal for construction of RWH structures for issue of licence by Chennai Municipal Corporation.
- Making RWH structures has been made mandatory for all the buildings (irrespective of size and area) when approaching CMWSSB for new water and sewer connections.
- Further it is also to be declared by the owner that the RWH structures would be properly maintained by the owner/owners/occupiers and should not be dispensed with in future.