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Unlike a storage dam where the primary purpose is the long term storage of water, a balancing dam is designed to act as a multi-purpose facility. Commonly it would serve as a distribution point from where water is diverted into pipelines, canals or power generating turbines or to serve as a pumping station. In some instances the balancing dam may have no natural catchment of its own. Water is usually fed into the dam from one or more outside sources in such a way that a balance is struck between the water entering at one end and being distributed at the other. Depending on the size of the dam, it may happen that the volume of water passing through the dam in the course of a day may
exceed the capacity of the dam. The constant in and outflow of water will cause the water level in the dam to fluctuate, and the smaller the balancing dam the larger and more rapid such fluctuations will be.
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