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Repairing rusty water tank

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  • Repairing rusty water tank

    Afternoon!

    As it is too melty outside to move, let alone garden, I'm thinking up some more garden DIY jobs I can do when it cools down a bit. After seeing these a couple of times on Gardener's World, I like the idea of having some dipping tanks in the garden. I'm in Kent and the summers seem to be getting drier each year and the water in our water butts is usually gone before we know it! We have an old loft water storage tank in the garden, but it's pretty rusty and has a few (some biggish) holes in. I'm wondering if it's worth trying to make it water tight again or if its just not worth the effort. Given how much buying a new one might cost i wanted to try this first. My plan, such that it is, is to get a few bits of cut to size perspex/acrylic and then silicone seal them into the sides of the tank - ie effectively line the tank with perspex. In my head this seems like it would work...reality might be different and so I thought it was worth picking the brains of you lot to see if its worth trying/abandon altogether or you have another idea!
    Ta muchly!
    Last edited by w33blegurl; 08-08-2020, 02:16 PM.
    If it ain't broke...fix it til it is!

  • #2
    How big is the tank?
    Is it worth considering pond liner inside? Maybe blocking some of the holes with plastic first so there are no sharp edges?
    "Nicos, Queen of Gooooogle" and... GYO's own Miss Marple

    Location....Normandy France

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    • #3
      I had a friend who repaired one several times but it always leaked. I asked around and was given lots of big blue barrels for free for the corners of my sheds and greenhouses. I use them for dipping in. Not pretty but useful.

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      • #4
        A pond liner is a good shout - or if the holes are on or near the bottom, a layer of very wet cement poured in as a slurry followed a week later by a can of bitumen or roof sealant will do the trick - give it a good few weeks to dry before you test it and obviously avoid doing the work if the weather is frosty.

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        • #5
          The tank is about 60x60x75cm, so decent-ish size. I had wondered about pond liner or similar - we have a load of heavy duty plastic which might fit. Most of the holes are in the bottom, so that cement slurry idea might work!

          Greenishfing - I am keeping an eye out for these sorts of things on freegle etc too. Want something a bit nicer/less obvious for the garden as wherever it goes you'll be able to see it, but would totally use those bit blue barrels on the lottie!

          Thanks all...will have a bit more of a ponder about your suggestions which will prob be a bit more cost effective to try out than mine!
          If it ain't broke...fix it til it is!

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          • #6
            If the metal has rusted through it will have zero structural strength, fill it with water and the weight will crush it.
            If I'm not on here, I'm probably fishing.

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            • #7
              If you are going to the trouble of mixing cement you had might as well get some second hand bricks and build from scratch.
              I pulled a couple of wheel barrow loads of bricks from by a hole that the local water company dug and built a raised bed.
              The workers just said that the old soil was going to be sent away for recycling. I saved a little bit of fuel and did some local recycling.
              They were happy for me to use them.Click image for larger version

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              • #8
                Aren't those bricks upside down.................................................?
                If I'm not on here, I'm probably fishing.

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                • #9
                  If the bottom of the old tank isn't totally roached, then sticking a bit of old chain link fencing in first before you pour in the cement slurry would add a lot of tensile strength - I'd probably give the bottom a good belting with a hammer first, just to see how much structural integrity was left - you could still use it as a planter in the worst case I expect.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by burnie View Post
                    Aren't those bricks upside down.................................................?
                    They were brand name up in the old wall that was cut thru by the back hoe when the hole was being dug.
                    I finished off with a layer of cement and set gravel into it.

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