Break tanks are implemented in boosting systems in order to supply the system if the mains supply becomes insufficient. Tanks are also implemented in series-connected boosting systems.
Break tanks can be used to ensure that the necessary amount of water is available to supply the system for a while, if the mains supply has failed or is unable to deliver enough water during peak demand. It is also used to ensure that a surge from the starting and stopping pumps doesn’t affect the mains distribution.
To prevent contamination
In some countries, it is not permitted to install booster sets directly on the incoming mains supply. This is primarily to ensure that no water can get pushed back into the mains supply thus avoiding the risk of contamination. In those countries, break tanks are a necessity in all booster instalments.
To create pressure zones
In tall buildings, break tanks can be used as intermediate tanks in order to divide a boosting system into a number of manageable pressure zones. Here, the break tanks supply both the taps in the tank’s own boosting zone and all the zones above it.
- High system resilience as there is a large volume of water stored in the break tanks.
- Low power consumption by boosters as the pressure is relatively low due to the system’s limited geometric height
- Reduced load on power grid because the booster’s power is relatively low.
- Less sensitive to electrical fall outs
- Low pressure-graded pipes as the pressure in the zones are reduced due to the zones’ limited geometric height.
- Low life span cost
- Increased initial cost
- Increased space requirements for boosters and tanks on service floors.
- High loss of potential revenue-generating square meters
- Increased risk of micro bacterial growth in break tanks
In water distribution, the term break tank refers to a pressureless and closed water tank, with an air gap that ensures zero backflow into the system.