Stylish, Slim Water Tank That Doubles As A Fence


Rainwater Harvesting In High-density Areas: An Innovative Approach

It is common to think of water tanks as huge, unsightly structures on rural properties. Hardly ideal for the majority of people located in urban areas. But what if there was a rainwater tank that blended into your property’s landscape and was also a fence?

Tap water is under pressure due to extreme weather conditions, new housing, and population growth. With summer, even more water is needed for pools, sprinklers, washing the boat and a raft of other activities. Not surprisingly, water management has become increasingly important, resulting in bans and restrictions. In New Zealand, there are four levels of council regulation, with Level 1 prohibiting sprinklers and Level 4 banning all outdoor tap use – even filling pools.

With its many coastlines, New Zealand may seem to have an abundance of water, but only 2.5% of the world’s water is safe to drink. After years of water restrictions, Kiwi’s are getting serious about rainwater harvesting. Covert pool fills and watering the garden in the dead of night to avoid being dobbed in by neighbours is more than inconvenient – it risks a $20,000 fine! The only sure way to use your outside tap all year round is to start collecting your own water. But therein lies the problem for many urban residents, who do not have the space for large, round water tanks. In the heat of summer, what does a nation of outdoor lovers do when they can’t run sprinklers, wash boats, water gardens, or swim in the pool?  

“Nothing that a bit of number 8 wire can’t fix” is a term used to express Kiwi ingenuity. Even though New Zealand is a small country, it is big on resourcefulness. With the growing demand for rainwater harvesting, new solutions were required for areas with high-density housing. With a bit of the old ‘number 8 wire’ thinking, Watersmart developed FenceTank™ – a slimline fence and water tank in one!  

Water Tank -

Designed and manufactured in New Zealand, FenceTank™ is the perfect space and water saver. It provides an almost invisible solution that is perfect for small sections and high-density housing. It blends in seamlessly with landscapes and is available in a number of modern colours. 

FenceTank™ is one of the narrowest above-ground water tanks on the market, measuring just 1800mm high, 1800mm long, and 410mm deep. Each FenceTank™ holds 1000 litres of water.  To put this into context, running your garden hose for an hour uses up to 400 litres depending on water pressure.

The ease of installation is another huge advantage of FenceTank™. As long as the collected water is intended only for outdoor use, DIYers (with the correct tools) can install them. If they are not used for drinking water or diverted into the house, you don’t even need council consent!

FenceTank™ is also easy to maintain. The exterior of the tank can be cleaned with a soft-bristled brush and water mixed with mild detergent. While the tank’s interior requires no maintenance when used to store non-potable water. 


Besides being able to turn on the outdoor tap in the midst of a ban, rainwater harvesting has another benefit – reducing water bills.  Residents of an Auckland subdivision that collected rainwater saved 56% on their water bills. A figure on par with the amount of water used by the average family for outdoor use, washing machines and toilets. 

While rainwater is most commonly used for non-potable purposes, it can also be harvested for potable usage if it meets the council’s sanitation requirements. Using rainwater for all water-related purposes (drinking, showering, dishwashing, etc.) requires additional filtration for hygienic reasons. In addition, building consent is required if you plan to connect a tank to your internal plumbing, and your tank must be installed by a plumber. 

Having a large and unsightly water tank is the easiest way to disrupt the ambience, and is simply not an option where space is limited. Thanks to a bit of Kiwi ingenuity, you can turn the tap on during water bans and save money off your water bill. WaterSmart has proven that larger tanks aren’t the only option. Rainwater tanks can be slim, stylish, and easily stored on smaller sites. If you are looking to install your own rainwater harvesting system, you can view the full range of rainwater tanks on the WaterSmart website.


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