Monday, 13 February 2012

H 2 Uh-oh

With an enormous project like this, perhaps it’s not too pessimistic to accept that something might go wrong.  Right at the very end of our build, something doesn’t seem to be holding water.

Henry the rooster points out the offending tank
  Some people have been kind enough to tell us that they’ve enjoyed reading about our (here comes that word) ‘journey’ which we began posting about almost a full year ago.  We’re hugely grateful to them but sometimes I wonder if I’ve short-changed anyone who reads this blog.  House builds are surely enormously stressful processes, fraught with unforeseen hazards, costs, relationship break-ups and mental break-downs.  There has been very little drama in our own project – everything seems to have gone ridiculously easily and smoothly for us.  I assumed that the real grief would only surface when we began repaying the principle on our mortgage – and no-one wants to read about that.

However, mere weeks away from final, ultimate completion we could no longer ignore the creeping suspicion that one of our water tanks was losing water – a lot of water. 
As anyone will tell you, it’s been a very disappointing summer.  Barely able to muster more than two sunny days in a row, January has provided enough rainfall to keep the landscape in Wairarapa a lush, glowing green. Lawnmowers everywhere, usually enjoying a long summer break by now, are still being pushed into noisy service every weekend.

We’ve consoled ourselves with the knowledge that all of that rainwater was filling our water tank, and so it was, until our plumber installed our pump and threw the lever which allowed water to flow into both our tanks.  It was shortly afterwards that Rose noticed that the simple equation of one tank-full of water divided into two should equal two half-tanks of water, didn’t seem to be holding true.
Optical illusion, evaporation and a hose accidentally siphoning the water were all considered and discarded.  When we finally started using a measuring stick to ascertain the amount of loss, the plunging levels could no longer allow us to ignore the obvious.

A top view of the full tank

And here's how it looked a few weeks later
 We were upset, of course. The high water table on our land certainly doesn’t need the addition of 22,500 litres, and we’d also unknowingly wasted water which Roger had allowed us to use from his farm supply to top our tank up.  This unwelcome complication also takes us even further from our almost realised dream of actually being able to shower in our own home for the first time in a year. Talk about so close and yet so far!

On the bright side, the plentiful rain this summer means that we are allowed to use the farm supply to replenish some of our loss once the problem is fixed (thank goodness we didn’t pay for a truck-load of water as many people do in summer) and our Plumber is coming tomorrow to fix it.  He’s adamant that it can’t be the tank and that it s more likely to be a loose connection somewhere.

Here’s hoping half our lawn doesn’t have to be dug up to find it!

So we'll be continuing to get our water like this for a little while to come...


  1. We have our fingers and paws crossed in hope that it is a simple fix.

    You've found a great spot for the "cats only door"!

    Michelle and Zebby Cat, xxxxx and puRRRRRumbles

  2. Thanks Michelle and Zebby! It seems the leaking tank will be fixed early next week - I'll keep you posted!