Russ Batyi

With over 40 years experience in this highly specialized field we are pleased to have Russ Batyi service our clients. Russ brings a vast knowledge of all aspects of the trade as well having resided locally for decades knows the local water demographics very well and may have in fact serviced your residential or commercial system in the past. Russ is easy to talk to and always available to chat to direct to answer any of your questions and concerns. You’re going to like Russ!

Russ specializes in:

  • Deep and Shallow Well Installations and Repairs
  • Water Filtration, Installations and Maintenance
  • Well Testing and Reports
  • Pump Installations and Service
  • Annual & Semi-Annual Service Agreements
  • Rain Water Harvesting and Cistern Systems
  • 24/7 Emergency Services
  • Residential/Commercial/Industrial
  • Water Testing
  • Well Disinfection

How to Clean and Disinfect a Cistern

Cisterns are watertight containers to protect and store drinking water. In some circumstances, the water from a cistern may not be safe to drink.

If cistern collars, lids, fill ports, or screened vents are damaged, germs (contaminants) may get in. If the cistern structure is damaged (e.g., frost, settling), cracking below the surface may happen, which could let contaminated groundwater and soil in. Cisterns in areas at risk for floods may also be at risk of overland flooding from surface water. If you see any areas that germs could get in or your test results show the water is contaminated, it’s important to fix the problem.

When do I need to test my cistern for bacteria?

Test your cistern:

  • Two times a year for routine monitoring (e.g., in the spring, in the fall)
  • Whenever there are changes to the water quality (e.g., water clarity, colour, smell, taste). Check the inside of the cistern and ask your maintenance provider or your bulk water hauler if there have been any changes to the source water supply.
  • When it’s been disinfected (to make sure it worked)

If you know the water is contaminated (e.g., you see rodents in the cistern), clean and disinfect it right away. You don’t need to test the water first.

How to Clean and Disinfect a CisternWhen to Clean and Disinfect Your Cistern

When do I need to clean my cistern?

A cistern must be cleaned to remove sediment and any other contaminants. It’s a good idea to clean your cistern:

  • At least 1 time a year to remove sludge and sediment build-up, or more often if the water looks, smells, or tastes different
  • If contaminants (e.g., rodents, surface water from overland flooding) get in the cistern
  • After it’s installed and sediment needs to be removed from the bottom of the tank

When do I need to disinfect my cistern?

Whenever a cistern is cleaned, it needs to be disinfected .Your cistern needs to be disinfected without being cleaned if:

  • It’s just been installed, even if there is no sediment or contaminants at the bottom of the tank
  • You have plumbing maintenance work done from the inside of the tank (e.g., replacement of valves, pumps). Anyone who enters a cistern needs to wear clean footwear.
  • The source water that is delivered isn’t safe to drink (potable)
  • A bacteria test result comes back positive. If the source of bacteria isn’t easy to see, check the inside of the cistern.

At Vortech we service dozens of cisterns annually for our clients. Be it below ground cisterns or above Poly or concrete we have the expertise to assure the system is sanitized and free of contaminants. The series of pictures below demonstrate a large above ground concrete cistern we routinely service. Our technician is certified and has confined space qualifications to assure health and safety measures as well to give our clients peace of mind from liability concerns. Our technician uses a confined space gas detector as well full body harness and tripod manned by a second tech to assure safety once in the cistern.


What our customers say:

  • "I cannot say enough good things about my experience with Charles and the crew at Vortech. I have used their services on two separate occasions and both times I was impressed with their professionalism and excellent customer service. This is a professional, trustworthy, and reliable company that I highly recommend to everyone. They give upfront and honest quotes. They come prepared and their work is fast, efficient, and dependable. Based on prior experience, this is not a given in this industry. So before you go with the big name alternative, consider giving Vortech a call instead. I will never call anyone else."

    Nissa Bell
    Victoria B.C.
  • "Vortech Plumbing came recommended. I met Charles, we agreed on a price with no hidden fees or contracts. The following week had his two men at our house removing bathroom fixtures and installing a new Soaker tub and Shower unit. Drywall was completed and had them back to install the fixtures and trim. My experience with this company was excellent. I will highly recommend them and have to friends and family. An old fashioned hand shake style service is what we received. Such a pleasure to do business with. Great guys, good service at value price. Thanks again."

    D Martin
    Duncan B.C.
  • "Vortech was recommended by a family member to evaluate a loss of water pressure in our home. A broken water main was determined to be the cause under the concrete slab of our home. We had three companies come and quote the job. We decided on Vortech, their approach and expertise separated them from the others and was as well most cost efficient. My husband and I were extremely pleased with the outcome and professionalism shown and as such would highly recommend their services. Fast and very organized. Excellent job."

    Dorothy Walton, RN
    Duncan B.C.
  • Choosing the right professional for our large home renovation, including two new bathrooms and laundry and kitchen, we went with Charles from Vortech Plumbing. New to the Cowichan Valley we had no experience with trades and felt it necessary to phone our local municipality for recommendations as well asked others in the community. Charles's name came up on several occasions. A true professional with excellent communication and patience. The job was done well within our time allowance and the quote honored. In short a pleasure to work with. Vortech Plumbing will be plumbing our new home next spring and highly recommend their services and knowledgable staff.

    Pierre Dufour
    Cowichan Valley
  • I had a serious drainage issue on my property. I called Charles from Vortech Plumbing and Drainage and he promptly assessed the situation and provided a logical and affordable solution. What a refreshing change to deal with a true and knowledgeable professional who quotes a fair price and then honors it!. No surprises and no hidden charges. The work was done quickly and to a very high standard. I will highly recommend Vortech.

    Cathal Walsh
    Duncan, B.C.
  • Sometimes you just luck out... Having just purchased a new home in Maple Bay we had the very good fortune of being steered to Vortech Plumbing by a friend. We had a drainage problem and needed it fixed. At first, we all assumed it was a simple job but as the digging got deeper and the problem became more complex we realized just how lucky we were to have Charles and his crew working on our behalf. Charles and his men were excellent; pleasant, hard working, as tidy as you can be working in mud, and always willing to explain what they were doing and why. Charles briefed us at each step of the way and made sure we were comfortable with their progress and direction. The end result was much better than we had hoped for and we're very happy with the work and the clean up. I would not hesitate to recommend Charles and Vortech Plumbing and Drainage (and already have) to anyone in need of drainage or plumbing work. The problem will be solved efficiently, effectively and with open and honest communication. Have a great day Charles.... and thank you.

    Carolyn Daley
    Maple Bay, B.C.
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