Ways to obtain Great Falls Montana area rural Drinking Water: Part 2
The City of Great Falls obtains the municipal water supply from the Missouri River. It is treated and used for drinking, household use and to feed your sprinkler system for city dwellers.
But what if you want to live out of the city limits and need water? There are several possibilities, each with their own quirks. Yesterday I talked about wells. Today I will discuss an alternative, but very popular option in the Great Falls area.
A cistern is essentially a large holding tank for water. Typically here they are made from concrete and buried in the ground. Usually only an access point to fill is all that needs to be seen above ground. Typical size is around 1500 gallons which is OK for a smaller home, but more likely two tanks will be connected together to create 3000 gallons of storage if you have a larger home or heavier usage.
The Fagenstrom Company in Great Falls is a good source of concrete cisterns.
If you have a well that has low volume, using it to fill a cistern may be the perfect combination.
Most likely, if you are installing a cistern, you have no access to water via a well. Because this is such a popular option in the Great Falls area, there are at least two companies who specialize in just keeping Cisterns full.
Prairie Water Service and Oasis Water Service are two popular companies here. Both can be contracted to keep your cistern "Topped Off". With a weekly fill, even a small cistern can keep you with plenty of water.
A word of caution here: A leaky toilet can drain a cistern in no time. Make sure you have no leaks on toilets, faucets, and do not use the cistern to water your lawn unless it is being refilled by your well.
You may want to install a rainwater cistern to capture rain just for lawn watering.
To reduce your cost of having a cistern, you can haul the water yourself instead of using a delivery service.
Later this week, I will discuss methods of hauling water, and places you can obtain water.