Cold Water Storage Tank Regulations


Cold water storage tank regulations are put in place to protect water systems from being contaminated by harmful bacteria such as Legionella, which thrives in cold water storage tanks if regulations are not followed. Legionella is a serious health risk by causing severe lung infection when large amounts of the bacteria are released into the air and breathed in.

The Water Supply Regulations & Scottish Water Byelaws set out the requirements for cold water storage tanks, outlining the design and installation procedures that should be followed under the WRAS Water Regulations Advisory Scheme.

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Water Fittings Regulations

Cold water storage tank regulations state that every water tank component should comply with the requirements set forward by Regulation 4.

It ensures that each water fitting is suitable and high-quality for the cold water storage tank it is used for. An appropriate C.E. marking on the fittings means it meets the British Standard or EEA state specification of a similar level of performance.

The water fittings must be installed, altered, disconnected or replaced professionally suited to the British Standard/European Technical specifications. Tank fitting specifications must be approved by the regulator and the water tank undertaker must approve the installation.

Water Tank Safety

Tricel is a reputable manufacturer of cold water storage tanks suitable for potable and non-potable applications. Cold water storage tank regulations and health and safety protocols for water tank installations guide our training and inspection processes. This ensures we maintain our high levels of product quality.

Water Tank Cleaning

Despite our cold water storage tanks being of the highest quality and manufactured using corrosion-resistant GRP material, a risk of contamination still exists. This makes it essential for water tanks to be regularly inspected and cleaned to prevent bacteria like Legionella from thriving.

Sectional Tank assembly

Potable Water Regulations

The Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations and Water Supply (Water Fittings) (Scotland) Byelaws set legal requirements for the design, installation, operation and maintenance of cold water storage tanks, including all water systems, water fittings and water-using appliances.

These cold water storage tank regulations ensure the water tank can store a safe drinking water supply. The regulations also safeguard against misuse, waste and undue consumption of the clean water supply. The regulations apply to all industries.

The Water Regulation Byelaws are in effect when water enters a property’s underground pipe, used in the cold water storage tanks, water fittings and the water system. The cold water storage tank regulations are not in effect if a private water supply is used. However, if a water company uses any top-up water supply, then the regulations apply.

Copies of the Water Fittings Regulations, and Byelaws in Scotland, including their schedules are available using the following links.

England and Wales – Statutory Instrument 1999 No. 1148, amended under subsequent legislation.

S.I.1999 No. 1148 – The Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations 1999

Amended under the following legislation:

S.I.1999 No.1506 – The Water Supply (Water Fittings) (Amendment) Regulations 1999

S.I.2005 No. 2035 – The Water Act 2003 (Consequential and Supplementary Provisions) Regulations 2005

S.I.2013 No.1387 – The Construction Products Regulations 2013


The Water Supply (Water Fittings) (Scotland) Byelaws 2014

Northern Ireland – Statutory Rules 2009 No.255

S.R. 2009 No.255 – The Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2009

Potable Water Storage Tank Requirements

  1. Cold water storage tanks with a capacity of 250 litres are suitable for most domestic use. The water inside a water tank needs to be constantly replaced with a freshwater supply, making it important not to purchase a water tank too large for its intended purpose.
  2. The design of water storage tanks for potable and non-potable water is different; therefore, you must be sure you are buying a potable water storage tank, ideally manufactured using GRP. Old galvanised water tanks corrode, discolouring the water supply and leaving a bad taste. A WRAS-approved logo, which you will find on all Tricel cold water storage tanks, certifies that our tanks are suitable for safely storing water for human consumption.
  3. A tank lid comes standard with our cold water storage tanks, stopping dirt, pollutants or vermin from entering the water supply.
  4. Potable water storage tanks have vents that work as a screen to stop insects and particles from contaminating the water supply.
  5. To store potable water, all water tanks must be insulated and kept away from direct sunlight to regulate the temperature.
  6. Regular inspections are required to ensure no leaks in the tank, all connections are secure, and no build-up is forming in the water tank.
  7. Public buildings, offices and social housing must have all cold water storage tanks checked and cleaned as part of the Legionella Control protocols. If you stay in shared accommodation where you rent a room, the landlord is responsible for these checks.
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