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By Karrion

United Kingdom Gb

Hi Guys

I have just put in a simple rain water catch consisting of a simple downpipe filter, mesh pre-filter and 2 1000ltr IBC tanks.

Everything is working great and the filters manage to get rid of any large bits of debris in the water.. The problem I have is that there is a rather large tree above the gutters that constantly sheds leaves, pollen, seads and sap turning my noce rainwater a horrible urine colour.

I have tried a couple of 5 micron 10" filter to try and get it out, they dont work..

Short of cutting the damn tree down does anyone have any ideas of how I can filter my collected water?





Could you put a fine mesh cover over your gutters to prevent the leaves getting in, this should help prevent the problem. Derek.

6 Aug, 2012


Hi Derek

I am just about to go for a combination of wire mesh and aquatic foam for this, but even after clearing out the gutters the water still looks like pee..

I cleaned the gutters using an aqua-vac an got them so clean I could have taken them back to the store! 3 hours later it rained (good old UK weather) I checked the gutters and still had pee-water.

Im almost positive its the tree as to my mind there is nothing else that could cause this..

Thought about going for a slow-sand filter but that seems like a big pain and allot of messing around just to have some water I can clean my car with..

Any other suggestions?? Has anyone else had this problem??



6 Aug, 2012


I have put an old sieve...the type that you sieve flour a fairly thin mesh at the bottom of the pipe where the water goes into the water butt and that stops all the leaves etc etc getting into the seems to work OK.

7 Aug, 2012


I have the same problem - the water drawn from the butt smells horrible. The water comes from the conservatory roof which catches a lot of small and large debris from a large sycamore, and it is the very small fragments that get down into the water. I would love to hear of an effective solution too.
Rogi, how often do you have to clear the sieve? I would think it needed doing at least once a day with all the wind and rain lately?

7 Aug, 2012


Hi Karrion, if it,s just to wash your car with, I would connect a hosepipe to the tap and use that, it would be a lot cheaper. Derek.

7 Aug, 2012


OK. I kinda cracked it!

I really didnt want to go down this route but I had no other choice..

I used 3 10ltr ice cream buckets, the first was a re-designed first-flush filter using some 50mm PVC pipe and a couple of ping-pong balls.. That gets rid of the bad water thats been sitting around in the guttering for a while..

The other 2 I build some cut-down slow-sand filters using about an inch of gravel at the bottom, then a layer of aquatic foam then about 6 inches of fine sand.

This gets the water from a horrible horse-urine brown to almost clear. Im hoping this will improve in time as the bacteria hasnt had a chance to grow on the top layer of sand yet..

Im a little concerned that the 2 sand filters wont be able to keep up with the water coming out of the downpipe during a heavy rain shower, so im going to install another 3 as soon as I get the parts.

While im at it, I think im going to setup a chacoal filter using some of the left over 50mm pipe!

Thanks for the help guys


13 Aug, 2012


Wow, that's pretty impressive. I reckon you really do deserve to have clean water after all that!

13 Aug, 2012

How do I say thanks?

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