Even though most residents of Olongapo have water supplied by Subic Water, each home needs a water tank if the owner can afford one. Commonly called a “gravity tank”, it’s really just a water storage tank.
Sometimes it’s raised to the point where gravity works to create pressure and sometimes it’s not. In some places in the Philippines, pressurized water isn’t available at all, and every water tank is a permanent gravity tank.
Our primary water supply comes from Subic Water, based at the Subic Bay Freeport Zone. The pressure fluctuates from a low pressure of about 10 PSI to a high pressure of about 45 PSI. The fluctuation is caused by the number of homes supported by the main water line, which appears to be a one-inch pipe at our elevation. There are a lot more homes in our area than there was when we built our house in 2006.
The water situation has improved tremendously since 2009, when I first wrote about our water supply issues on an old website. Back then, we would have water outages at the same time as the power outages because the water pumps ran on the same power lines.
Since then, they’ve been separated and now the only times we have a water outage is when there’s a citywide power outage or when a pipe bursts somewhere in our area. We have more of a problem with low pressure than anything else now.
This has been on my “to get” list for a long, long time. I don’t know when I’ll get a water tank set up, and it has to be high enough to easily supply the second floor of our house. While we’ll still have water available from the water district, we’ll always keep the tank filled. When there’s a water outage, we’ll still be able to take showers and be able to do our laundry, clean our dishes, use our toilets, etc.
I’m not in a hurry. After all, we drink bottled water that’s delivered every week or so. We have a hot and cold water dispenser which uses 5-gallon plastic bottles and a water outage wouldn’t affect our supply of drinking water. I don’t have a problem waiting out a water outage for everything else. It’s the power outages that get to me, especially during the hot months.
My wife is the one who gets anxious when there’s a water outage and I don’t even know why. Perhaps it’s all the years when she was young, when people had to wait their turns at a local well, hoping they didn’t run out of water before bathing. We need a water tank because she says so and who am I to argue?
Photo Attribution: Retire to the Philippines and Succeed
Edited and updated. Originally published at one of my other websites in February 2014.