- How to Seal Concrete Water Tanks
- How to Repair a Plastic Gas Tank on a Weedeater
- Concrete Septic Tank Problems
- The Best Way to Disguise a Propane Tank Outside
- How to Grow Grass Over a Septic Tank
- How to Dispose of an Oil Tank
- How to Hide a Septic Tank on a Property
- How to Install a Pressure Tank for a Sprinkler System
In parts of the world with insufficient water and the threat of drought, water storage is a necessity. Tanks that hold thousands of gallons of water can be made from concrete. Sealing these tanks prolongs their lives and reduces the risk of leakage. An underground concrete cistern needs to be sealed before it can be backfilled and buried. Smaller, above-ground concrete water storage systems can be sealed at any time.
Clean all mud, dirt, dust, grime, moss and loose material off of the exterior surface of the concrete water tank with a wire brush.
Apply concrete seam tape to any cracks that are visible on the surface of the concrete, as well as to any joints that you see in the structure of the water tank, for added safety.
Apply water sealer primer to the surface of the tank. Different concrete sealing products are available, so be sure that yours are compatible. Mixing a primer with a sealing coat from a different manufacturer isn't recommended since they may react in unpredictable ways. Depending on the product that you use, it may be either brushed or sprayed onto the surface of the concrete. Allow the primer to dry for 24 hours.
Apply two coats of concrete water sealant to the surface of the water tank using a spray gun. Expect to use about 2 gallons of material for every 100 square feet. This product should be applied thickly, up to about 1/8 inch, to ensure imperviousness to water and leakage.
Cut three strips of fiberglass fabric slightly bigger than the damaged area on the gas tank. Use standard scissors to cut the fabric.
Set the weedeater on a flat surface. Mix the epoxy with the hardening agent according to the directions on the container. Mix the solutions in a small plastic container.
Brush on a coat of the mixture to the damaged area of the gas tank and overlap it. Use a small paintbrush to apply the mixture.
Lay a piece of the fiberglass fabric over the damaged area on top the epoxy mixture and ensure that it lays completely flat and smooth. Brush on another layer of the epoxy mixture and apply another piece of fiberglass. Apply a coat of epoxy and place the third and final piece of fabric. Brush on a final coat of epoxy over the final piece of fabric and let the repair dry for 24 hours. Lightly sand any uneven areas using a 200-grit sandpaper.
Concrete septic tanks can be quite expensive to install when compared to plastic septic tanks because their weight (up to 10 tons) will require the use of heavy equipment, perhaps even a crane. Total costs nationwide average $3,000 to $5,000, but can range up to more than $15,000 depending on the municipality, soil, local codes and type of tank.
Concrete septic tanks have been known to crack if a heavy vehicle is driven over them. If the concrete is of an inferior composition it can crack from subtle shifts in the soil. Cracks can result in leaks which can contaminate the surrounding soil and pose a health risk.
Preformed concrete septic tanks are quite heavy, making their transport and installation more of a challenge than comparable plastic tanks. A 500-gallon concrete tank will weigh approximately 8,000 lbs., while a similar plastic tank weighs only 450 lbs.
Concrete septic tanks can be affected by sewer gases which can hasten their deterioration.
Concrete is more susceptible to penetration by tree roots than fiberglass septic tanks.
Place a fence or screen around the tank. A small wooden fence or a short screen around the propane tank will keep the tank out of view. Plant some flowers or a vegetable garden in front of the screen or fence to brighten the area. Make sure to include a gate and easy access for propane technicians.
Plant tall evergreen shrubs in front of the propane tank. evergreen bushes and shrubs like juniper and cedar are easy to maintain after they have been established, and since they are evergreen they will hide the propane tank during the winter too.
Grow vines over the tank. Place a trellis in front of the tank and lean it against the side of the house for support. Plant a vine in the ground in front of the trellis. The vine will climb up the trellis and hide the propane tank. Depending on your climate, a number of different varieties of vine can be used for this. Virginia creeper, clematis, ivy and grape vines can all be grown as a cover vine.
Rake the septic tank area clear of rocks and organic debris using a flexible, metal rake.
Sow the grass seeds over the lawn by evenly distributing the seeds with a spreader. Use 2 or 4 lb. of seed when reseeding a mature lawn or over-seeding a new lawn, respectively.
Sprinkle a 1/12-inch layer of lawn lime over the seeds using a spreader. Lime increases the topsoil's pH balance over time.
Cover the seeds and lime with a 1/2-inch layer of clean compost or peat moss fertilizer. Fertilizer moderates temperature fluctuations, increases moisture absorbency, and adds vital minerals and nutrients.
Water the newly planted seeds once daily for 2 weeks or until new grass growth is visible through the fertilizer.
Trim back adjacent flora to increase direct sunlight on the lawn area using outdoor trimmers.
Empty the tank and any cap pipes. The heating oil company can pump the tank dry.
Enlist a professional to clean the tank prior to removal. Look under "Environmental and Ecological Services" in your local yellow pages.
Hire a tank excavation company to remove a buried tank. It can obtain any necessary permits from local authorities.
Fill the tank with an inert material such as gravel or cement, if you cannot remove the old oil tank without damaging nearby structures. Choosing this option may affect the value of your land. Future buyers may not wish to have a filled tank on the property.
Blind flange the basement tank's fill pipe. Insert a solid disk into a pipe joint to prevent any oil from leaking from the tank as you remove it from the basement.
Remove the tank from your property. Take it to a salvage yard for recycling. If a salvage yard is not available, contact your local landfill for more information on disposal.
Report any oily stains or gassy smells to your state's environmental protection agency. Tanks do rupture when you move them, regardless of how carefully you handle them. Follow instructions on cleanup procedures.
Find out what restrictions you have on hiding your septic tank. For instance, planting trees might damage the tank because the roots will grow into the tank and potentially pierce it. The same is true for large bushes. Spreading topsoil and planting flowers might be all right, but don't put the topsoil over the tank lid or it could be frozen shut during the winter, and no repairs can be made.
Plan your camouflage. For instance, if you put a bird bath on top of your septic tank lid, then you might want to keep with the theme and put a small rock ring around the edges and then put down topsoil and grow flowers in that area. Alternatively, you might want to put a wall of bushes further out from the septic tank that will act as a screen, and just leave it at that. The decision is up to you and what works with your property.
Landscape based off your plan. You might run into snags that will require you to readjust your plan though, so be prepared to go in a new direction if, perhaps, your soil is filled with rocks that won't support flowers, or if you can't plant where you wanted due to power lines or other buried utilities.
Shut off the power and water supplies to the system. This helps make sure the system will not turn on when the system is drained.
Drain the water from the system. Most likely, if there is no tank installed, the system self-drains after each use. Be sure to check.
Cut the supply pipe between the water supply and the distribution valve. The cut should be made where the tank will reside.
Install the pipe tee at the location of the pipe cut. Install the tee per the requirements of the pipe.
Install the 1-foot of pipe to the tee side of the tee. This will be the pipe to the tank.
Attach the tank the the pipe. Some tanks may require more pipe to complete the connection.
Reconnect the water and power supplies. Test the system for leaks.