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What are the requirements of water tank cleaning?

Over a period of time, water tanks can gather dirt, debris, and rust, sediment and more.... As such, bacteria can form, dangerous bacteria such as Legionella. During a Legionella written scheme it may be identified that you require a Water tank cleaning service. Once your water tank is cleaned it it should meet the requirements of BS EN 806-5:2012, BS8558:2015, and BS PD855468:2015.


This blog will provide will answer questions surrounding Water tank cleaning such as What is Water Tank Cleaning? What are the costs associated with Water tank cleaning? and why it may be required.

What is involved in cold water storage tank cleaning?

Water tanks are isolated from service and drained via a suitable drain valve or pumped out via submersible pump. Once the tanks are drained, it's physically cleaned, entering the tank to do so. If required. All debris and dirty water is vacuumed out using a wet vac. The tank is then disinfected, normally with a chlorine solution @ 50 mg/l for a period of no less than 1 hour. The chlorinated water is neutralised with a suitable solution, normally sodium thiosulphate and flushed to drain. The tank is then filled with fresh water and put back in service. How Much Does Tank Cleaning & Disinfection Cost Tank cleaning can cost from £100 to £1500+. The cost can depend on several factors; tank size, location, is it a confined space, condition.


Yes, you should get your tank cleaned regularly.

Over a period of time your tank gets full of sediment and there can be other issues such as stagnation, scale, osmosis, rust, and corrosion.

There is no legal requirement to clean water tanks however a legionella written scheme will identify that it should be inspected on an annual basis. The routine inspection will determine if it should be cleaned.

In addition, if the installation is new or if the tank / system has been left inactive for a period of time, it should be cleaned and disinfected.

Can I carry out a water tank cleaning myself?

Water tanks can be cleaned by someone who is competent and trained to do so.

Careful consideration should be taken with tanks that supply drinking water as this procedure carried out incorrectly could result in contamination to the water supply.

Some water tanks are deemed to be a confined space and specialist training / equipment is required to ascertain the risk and implement a safe system of work.

Once a tank has been entered or touched with any requirement it should be disinfected as per BS EN 806-5:2012, BS 8558:2015 and BS PD 855468:2015. Do i need to clean my water tank?

Yes, you should get your tank cleaned regularly. Over a period of time your tank gets full of sediment and there can be other issues such as stagnation, scale, osmosis, rust, and corrosion. There is no legal requirement to clean water tanks however a legionella written scheme will identify that it should be inspected on an annual basis. The routine inspection will determine if it should be cleaned. In addition, if the installation is new or if the tank / system has been left inactive for a period of time, it should be cleaned and disinfected. Is there anything else that I should be worried about?

Unfortunately yes, it is quite often found that water tanks are installed in breach of water regulations or against BS8558:2015. It is important to know if the tanks are installed correctly and adequately turned over. A legionella risk assessment normally contains a survey that ascertains the suitability of the storage tank and any recommendation to bring it up to the relevant standard

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