Many commercial buildings use storage tanks for Domestic (Potable) and Fire Water Applications, especially in Houston, where it is required by Houston Amendments to the Uniform Plumbing Code Section 607. The atmospheric tank creates an air gap between the city supply and the building piping, decoupling the building from the city supply, and providing multiple benefits.
Backflow Prevention – The Houston amendment to the UPC calls out the specific vent and overflow sizing and location to prevent the tank from backfilling into the city supply.
Demand Independence – If a building has a sudden large demand, it can draw down the city supply pressure if there is not a break tank. Since the tank decouples the water in the building, large demands draw down the tank level but do not impact upstream city supply pressure.
Emergency Water Storage – Tanks are typically 500 Gallons to 2,500 gallons and up. If the city supply is lost, the building still has usable water in the tank.
Steel tanks have been the industry standard for many years, but that doesn’t make it the best solution. Steel tanks require a liner to meet standards for drinking water and prevent rust & damage to the tank walls. Tank liners have a 6-10 year life and must be sandblasted and replaced. Steel tanks also present challenges during new construction or retrofits, requiring open walls/ceilings to drop on a complete tank or welding a new one in the room.
Modular fiberglass tanks from FTC address all of the shortcomings of a steel tank for Domestic and Fire Water Storage Tanks! The tanks are assembled in place from modular FRP panels with a smooth mirror-like finish that does not require a liner. Once built, the tank has a 40+ year life with minimal maintenance!
As water is used in the building, an automatic system is required to replenish the water and maintain a constant level in the tank. To learn more about fill stations, check out our solution page here (link).