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What are the NSW Government Requirements for Installing a Rainwater Tank?

Government Requirements for Installing a Rainwater Tank

So, you’re deciding on a rainwater tank, but size is only one part of it, right? You also need to know about installing it. Government requirements for installing a rainwater tank in New South Wales include particular specifications as outlined in this post.

If you’re installing an above ground water tank, here’s what the applicable legislation requires, as long as the rainwater tank is not being installed in a foreshore area or in an environmentally sensitive area.

If the land is not zoned as any of the following; RU1, RU2, RU3, RU4, RU6, R5, E2, E3, E4; then the rainwater tank can’t be more than 10000 litre capacity, and needs to be located at least 450mm from the boundary, if it is taller than 1800mm. Got that? There’s more.

If it is on land in the above mentioned zones, then there’s a slightly larger list of requirements. The rainwater tank must be located at least 10m from the boundary and behind the building line of the road frontage. It must not rest on existing building footings for support, and must not require cut and fill of more than 1m below or above ground level. The rainwater tank must be fitted with a screened rainhead for self cleaning and preventing leaf litter, as well as a first flush device with an automatic reset, and mosquito proof inlets and outlets. The rainwater tank overflow must be connected to an existing stormwater drainage system that does not discharge to the property of adjoining neighbours, nor cause a nuisance to them. It must have a sign indicating that the water in the tank is rainwater, and finally, it must be located in the rear yard if it is on or in a heritage or draft heritage listing. Pumps require a soundproof enclosure, and if reticulated water is provided, then the rainwater tank must not be interconnected with the system providing drinking water unless it complies with the requirements of the water authority.

We have obtained this information from the NSW State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008. Whilst these are the NSW government requirements for installing a rainwater tank, we have a few handy points to note as well. You can download our own installation instructions from our company resources page here.

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