News

Untreated tank water ‘safe to drink’

Reuters
November 05, 2009 12:02AM

DRINKING untreated rainwater is safe for your health, according to an Australian study.

Researchers from Melbourne’s Monash University looked at 300 homes that used rainwater collected in water tanks as their primary drinking source in what they described as a “world first” study that comes amid growing criticism of bottled water.

All of the homes were given a benchtop filter and told it would remove any potential gastroenteritis-causing organisms from their water, but half of the devices did not contain filters.

Families recorded their health over a year and the researchers found that the rate of gastro cases recorded by these two groups were very similar and also matched the broader community who drank treated tap water.

“People who drank untreated rainwater displayed no measurable increase in illness compared to those that consumed the filtered rainwater,” researcher Karin Leder, head of the infectious diseases unit at Monash University’s department of epidemiology, said in a statement.

“This study confirms there is a low risk of illness … Expanded use of rainwater for many household purposes can be considered and in current times of drought, we want to encourage people to use rainwater as a resource.”

Leder said some health authorities had doubts about drinking rainwater due to safety concerns, particularly in cities where good quality mainstream water was available.

Australia’s prolonged drought has prompted a rise in water tank installations.

But Leder did caution that the families involved in the study were routine rainwater drinkers and may already have built up defences against possible infections.

The study came amid growing concern about the environmental impact of bottled water products, which are often transported long distances and packaged in plastic which clogs landfills.

Latest News

 

According to the Energy Rating Website  Australian hot water systems could account for as much as 25% of the total household energy consumption. A Sanden heat pump only uses 22% of the energy required by an electric storage system hot water system putting it miles ahead in energy and running-cost savings compared to inefficient electric and gas hot water systems.

How does the Sanden heat pump work?

The Sanden “Eco®” Hot Water Heat Pump System operates like a refrigerator in reverse. It contains a fan that forces air through an evaporator that contains a refrigerant. The heat in the air passes through the evaporator and is absorbed by a natural refrigerant, R744 (CO2), which is ozone friendly and does not contribute to global warming.

The warm gaseous refrigerant is circulated in the system via a compressor. As it passes through the compressor, its pressure rises, as does its temperature. This hot refrigerant then passes through a heat exchanger to heat the water, which is finally pumped to the storage tank.

Should I replace my old electric storage hot water system with a Sanden?

Here at Solar Flow we are constantly getting asked about the merits of removing old inefficient gravity-fed or electric storage hot water systems and installing a Sanden heat pump and compressor. With over 4 years of history installing heat pumps in Melbourne we can categorically say that decommissioning your old electric hot water unit and installing Australia’s most efficient heat pump, the Sanden, will save homeowners in the vicinity of $700-$1,000 per year.

How much does a Sanden heat pump cost in Melbourne?

The price of a Sanden heat pump supplied and installed in Melbourne to replace an old electric hot water system being around the $3,000 mark. This represents a payback period of under 5 years in most scenarios. The Sanden heat pump also offers flexibility with operation times and can be set to run on daylight hours to take advantage of free energy from a solar electricity system or on a cheaper off-peak tariff at night.

Can I run my Sanden heat pump at night in Melbourne?

Yes! The Sanden heat pump offers flexibility with operation times. It runs perfectly on an off-peak electricity tariff at night time as it has an operating temperature down to -10 degrees C. If you have a solar electricity system on a standard feed-in tariff you can set your Sanden heat pump up to run on daylight hours. And if you have excess electricity your export to the grid your hot water will be virtually free when you run it on a daytime heating cycle!

Contact US

So if you are contemplating replacing an old electric hot water system with a highly efficient Sanden heat pump contact us now on 1300 931424 to book a free energy analysis of your current system. We will also determine if you are eligible for the STC and VEEC rebate programs run by the Federal and State governments. These rebates could be available to some Melbourne households when replacing an old electric hot water system with a new Sanden Eco hot water heat pump.