Your driveway is washing away in the rain and you are fighting a daily battle with mould and someone tells you water is precious! The ecological impact of extracting water from creeks and bores is still very poorly understood, but it is certain that excessive extraction will have an adverse effect on waterways and vegetation, and subsequently on the entire ecosystem. You must also carefully consider how you can obtain clean drinking water in relation to your chosen sewage system site and that of your neighbours. You have three main options – rainwater, creek water and bore water – each with their own considerations. Many people use a combination, but before you start, try minimising water using these handy water saving tips. Saving water will also reduce the cost of the system you require.
If you want mains pressure you will need to use a pump, and factor that into your power needs. Otherwise, try to harness gravity by positioning your tank at least 6m higher than the house. Even if you need to pump the water into the tank, from a bore, creek or a lower tank, periodic pumping will require less power than an on-demand pumping. If you are using creek water, you may be able to avoid a power altogether using a hydraulic ram pump.
If polythene water pipes travel overland through forest, rodents - especially Giant White-tailed Rats - will chew them. This can be avoided by using pipe 50mm or over in diameter, too wide for the rodent’s jaws. Cover joiners in the pipe with rocks, as rodents will find the occasional gnaw on these surfaces impossible to resist. Spraying the pipe with hairspray or citronella also deters rodents.