Just last year, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation conducted a survey in Melbourne and found that 20 percent of rainwater tanks have mosquito infestations.
Contaminants: Bacteria and Toxic Metal
Mosquitoes will be the least of your troubles. Bacteria can grow in your collected rainwater. Rainwater from roof runoff can also carry off toxic metal traces. All these contaminants make collected rainwater unsafe for drinking.
Clean the Rainwater
However, many Australians have lacked access to town water and rely on rainwater instead. To stay safe from contaminants then, you have to ensure the cleanliness of your collected rainwater. You can Filter, Boil, and Mesh.
Filter to Remove Some Germs and Metals
Filtering your rainwater can remove hazardous microorganisms such as E. coli. Filters can also separate some toxic metals that may contaminate your rainwater. Filters can only do so much unless you maintain them religiously, however. For optimum filtering protection then, clean or replace your filters regularly.
Boil to Kill Germs
Even with filtering, collected rainwater will still have contaminants. To remove any remaining germs completely, you can boil the rainwater. Heat kills the bacteria and leaves your rainwater clean for drinking, even cooking.
Mesh to Keep Mosquitoes Out
Finally, to protect your rainwater from mosquitoes, you can install mesh covers on both the inlet and outlet of your rainwater collection tank. With the tank openings sealed, you keep out mosquitoes from the container. You will now have mosquito-free rainwater.
Rainwater can be dangerous to consume, but as long as you Filter, Boil, Mesh, as well as clean your roof gutters from debris and dead animals, your rainwater will become safe to drink.