Need more water? Trying to catch rain water? Try storing it in a cistern. These storage devices are relatively simple and come in several flavors. Cisterns used for potable water require extra care and maintenance.

In general, cisterns can be made from reinforced concrete, metal, plastic, fiberglass or wood. Picking the right material depends a lot on where you are going to put it. Wood should typically be avoided, especially if the water will be stored underground. Fiberglass is a good option if stored inside a building. However, UV exposure will harm it if stored outdoor, and typically it can’t carry the weight if buried.

If storing potable water, typically, the water should be tested at least twice a year. A filtering system will likely be needed, and should also be tested regularly.  Before use, cisterns should be disinfected. Keep them on compacted, level ground. Make sure the water can drain away from catchments. Install them away from sewage, contaminants and heat sources.

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