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This webpage is about the facts of setting up and supplying any commercial or residential structure with potable drinking water using a galvanized, stainless steel, or plastic bulk water tank for storage. This presentation here is based on my experience as a domestic bulk water hauler (truck driver/delivery man) in the California high desert located in Phelan, California. The main components of a bulk water delivery system are the following: A clean water source such as an authorized fire hydrant or other water fill point, a 2 or 3 ton truck equipped with a usually metal tank (can be stainless steel or galvanized), i do not know if it is possible to use a heavy-duty plastic tank mounted on the bed of a 2 ton to 4 ton truck, a bulk storage tank located close to the point of use (near your home or other building).
This constitutes the three main components for a bulk water system:
  1. A water source.
  2. A truck or trailer to deliver the water.
  3. A bulk water tank to hold the transported water.
The water system i am outlining here can be utilized by both private individuals to supply their own needs or can be developed as a business in areas of the world where the need for potable drinking water exists, but the cost of drilling and maintaining ground water wells is too expensive for most people in the local population. So, bulk water transfer by truck has been proven to be a very dependable and effective way to supply a home or other structure with potable water (potable means: Safe to drink; drinkable water). The first task to accomplish in setting up a bulk water delivery system is to establish a "Water Fill Point". This would be someplace where a person or business can go to fill up their truck mounted water tank legally with permission of the water source owner (this might be a local municipal water company or even a private party who agrees to sell you water at a specified price per tank load or by the gallon). If you use a municipal water company as your source of water they will probably have you register your truck along with personal information with them and then they will have you fill your tank through a "metered" outlet. Or they could have a flat rate per tank load depending on how the agency is set up. The second item to talk about is the water hauling truck. My experience has been exclusively with either a 1000 gallon or 2000 gallon capacity tank mounted truck. Water weighs approximately: 8.35 LBS per gallon. It is heavy and generates a lot of wear & tear on the hauling vehicle. Your truck or trailer mounted tank must also have openings for filling the tank and emptying the tank. Filling the tank is often done by opening the lid on top of the tank and positioning a tube or pipe from a boom tube fill point over the opening and letting the water flow into the tank until full. Also more popular and modern is to fill the tank though it's 2 inch plumbing pipes or a threaded bung installed on the side or bottom of the tank. The truck or trailer mounted tank can be emptied by either gravity flow or with the use of a pump. Most or all hoses i have worked with are of the 2in inside diameter PVC plastic/rubber type. The hoses i have used were all fitted with brass quick disconnect (cam lock) fire hose couplings. Most water storage tanks were of about 6ft x 6ft (1200 gal) size: A size that would probably serve one person for one month to include showers and other household uses such as cooking food & washing dishes.
Angle Iron Tower
The stationary water tank should be located as close to the point of use as possible either positioned on the ground level with a bed of pea gravel or 1/2 - 3/4in rock underneath the tank to provide aeration and water/rain drainage. You do not want standing water under the water tank because of the possibility of causing rust on the tank bottom. Water tanks can last for many years if set-up & cared for properly. If a water tank tower is preferred then a tower rule of thumb would require a 10ft tower which allows for easier access for any cleaning or maintenance. 10ft means the distance from the ground surface to the tower platform where the tank sits (bottom of the tank). People use all kinds of things to make water tank towers from cross stacked railroad ties to 2x4 lumber. I think 3in or 4in x 1/4in angle iron is best for towers and i would paint the angle irons with Rust-oleum paint. You will also need to install concrete pads or piers to support the legs of the water tower framework and keep everything above ground. Be sure to use a spirit level to level tank & tower. See the picture on the right: This illustrates something i would recommend but it needs more cross braces for use with a water tank. It is more efficient to fill a water tank from the bottom than from the top through the man hole cover or otherwise. This goes against human reasoning but it is a scientific fact.

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