Roof-harvested rainwater can become contaminated from a range of sources. Recent studies conducted in Queensland have found evidence that rainwater tanks are often contaminated with animal faeces. Animal faeces can contain a range of microorganisms, such as bacteria, viruses and protozoa, some of which can cause human disease. The studies have also found evidence of these disease-causing microorganisms in rainwater tanks.
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Chemicals may be introduced into the tanks from hazardous roofing materials, nearby industrial emissions or agricultural activities such as crop spraying. Also all water tanks build up dirt on the bottom affecting the freshness taste of the water.
Industry standard Filtration systems are called Ultra Violet sterilization. These use Ultra Violet light which has a deadly effect on microorganisms such as pathogens, viruses, bacteria and others.