Will we save money by digging a shallow well further away from the house?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by rambler, Oct 24, 2005.

  1. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Well, that is exactly the reason to be renting one. :) :)

    10 feet of rise is nothing to pump the water up. I forgot to ask the distance from the house to the well. But, it is best to have the pump & electrical down there by the well, and a pump can very easily push water, so you should have no problem at all.

    I'm not qulaified to suggest exact items to use and all, but just basically - should work fine, & should not be difficult to make the water flow.

    --->Paul
     
  2. Arborethic

    Arborethic Well-Known Member

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    You have less than ten feet of rise, so pumping will not be a problem. You can install a jet pump at the house, or the nearest source of electricity. You may be able to use the jet pump and hose/poly line to 'blow out' the sand in the creek thereby increase your reservoir capacity. You might also consider using a bit of mortar and all that free rock to build a low weir/dam to further increase water capacity.

    However, you CANNOT depend upon gravel/sand filtration to remove E. coli bacteria, giardia, etc from the water, plus other nefarious microbes! This is IMPORTANT!!! Though the cows are are far away, there are hundreds of mid to small sized animals taking a dump in your potential water supply! Those 'pure' mountain streams in the movies are just pure BS! If you had a spring bubbling from a rock fissure, originating a thousand feet deep, then I might take on the project.

    A jet pump requires TWO pipes....one to provide pressure towards the venturi at the intake end, the other to provide water at the useage end. But one trench will suffice for both pipes, just as a large diameter well uses two pipes for a jet pump.

    Even if you provide yourself with an adequate fair weather flow of water from the creek, Arkansas experiences some 'deep freeze' weather that can freeze water lines for a week or more. To avoid the inconvenience of such times, you would be required to install a deep underground cistern to increase your reservoir capacity. But a cistern also provides you with an easy target for water treatment.
     

  3. outofmire

    outofmire Well-Known Member

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    Well, we weren't planning to drink the water straight as is. We are using the Big Berkey water filter which is used by the red cross in third world countries. It has ceramic filters that are infiltrated with silver and charcoal. Supposed to be very effective at removing bacteria.
     
  4. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Pitcher type hand pumps don't work well when it is below freezing - much at all, really. Can't think of the term, but you would need a hand pump that has the pumping mechinism below the water line down in the well. Either type need to to be directly over the well.

    --->Paul
     
  5. Darren

    Darren Still an :censored:

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    Usually water with sulphur or iron comes from deeper formations. By that I mean 50' + in our area over top solid formations. A drilled shallow well not too far from the stream might provide you with good water. The key is looking at the valley and its floodplain. If you have bottoms on both sides of the creek, those were probably deposited eons ago. Drilling a well someplace in the bottom where it won't be overtopped by flood water will give you a good source. The deeper you go, especially if you get into solid rock, the more chance you have of getting into the bad stuff. If the area floods, you can always extend the casing above ground highrer than any expected flood.
     
  6. outofmire

    outofmire Well-Known Member

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    I've never heard this. Do you have first hand experience with this?
     
  7. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    They use leathers that are right in the pump their in front of you. If it is below freezing, the leather will not seal, likely will be frozen up actually. They also do not pull water up very high, typically need priming, water poured on it to start the suction process. These depend upon suction to lift the water, which is cheaper but less efficient, less lift.

    Pumps with a stem going down inside the pipe, and the actual pump down at the bottom of the pipe won't freeze, and are better at pushing water farther. Not that hand pumping is easy, but these are better. The pupm is down in the water, needs no priming, and pumps are much better at pushing water, rather than sucking it.

    At least,t hat is what I am familiar with.

    --->Paul
     
  8. outofmire

    outofmire Well-Known Member

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    So I won't be able to use a pitcher pump unless I keep it from freezing somehow? That stinks since that was what I was about to go with because of the ease of installation. I don't know the first think about electric pumps
     
  9. East Texas Pine Rooter

    East Texas Pine Rooter Well-Known Member

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    Here in Texas I have a hand dug well on my farm, with a 36-inch concrete well tile. The round tile is rolled over to the place where the well will be located. Using a shovel, and maybe a grubbing hoe, you just start digging, and shovel the dirt over the side. As you dig under the sides of the tile, it starts sinking down. When it down to level of the original ground level, roll another tile over, and set it on top of the first well tile. My well is 50-feet deep, and has 16-feet of water, which recovers in 45-minutes when pumped dry. You will need to rent a submersible eclectic pump to keep the water out while digging, or use a bucket with a rope. When you get to the bottom, when you think its deep enough, shovel some gravel on the bottom to keep sand down. We find someone who is good at witching (finding the underground streams). When two underground streams intersect each other is a great place for a well. The same is true with a deep well. They get paid the same if it’s a dry hole. Some people don't believe in witching, I do. When you hand dig down 40+feet, and find no water, you will start believing to.
     
  10. HermitJohn

    HermitJohn Well-Known Member

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    Nuts, I used a pitcher pump on a 25ft 1 1/4 inch well in norther Michigan. 20 to 30 below not uncommon in winter. Yep you have to prime it each and every time if used on well of any depth.. Its designed with a somewhat inefficient check valve (leather flapper in bottom of chamber) so water quickly drains back down after you are finished using so it wont freeze and bust the casting. If one is too spoiled to prime pitcher pump every last time you use it, then dont use a pitcher pump. Pitcher pumps were really originally intended to draw water from a shallow cistern that needed very little suction to start a flow. But if you are willing to prime them, can use them on an upto 25foot well. Keep extra cup leathers of correct size on hand. Used to be able to get them at some hardware stores but bet you have to order them anymore. You can make a "flapper leather" out of old piece of heavy inner tube. I did this and never had to replace it again. I'd go through at least 2 cup leathers in a year.

    Now a long handle pump has the cylinder submersed in water and a long rod inside sucker pipe to operate the piston with cup leather when you work the handle. Since its submersible, it doesnt freeze and doesnt need priming. Cup leathers last much longer with this setup.
     
  11. AstralBear

    AstralBear Active Member

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    I watch a well put in my yard by hand as a kid and remember a tri pod that had a heavy weight that was on a pully and pulled up with a rope than released and it would hammer a 1-1/4 pipe into the ground .

    I was about 5 y/o so I don't remember the exact details but maybe equipment like that is still sold ?
     
  12. bachelorb

    bachelorb Well-Known Member

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    When we put in our shallow well, we used a post pounder and some galvanized pipe (with some kind of specialized tip. I don't remember too well, it was 35 years ago). That worked until they put in county water in 1990.

    I use a pitcher pump mostly year round here in Northern Alabama to water my animals (I got tired of crawling down the bank to the creek). Hermit John is right about priming. I finally got tired (spoiled ;) ) of priming it and installed a checkvalve which I remove in January and February. Here we only have a hard freeze for about two weeks.
     
  13. lewbest

    lewbest Well-Known Member

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    I recall hearing/reading of this years ago & would like info on it also if still available!

    Lew
     
  14. ellebeaux

    ellebeaux Well-Known Member

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    Can you use a ram pump? That would be non-electric. I keep seeing these ads for them in Countryside etc. but I haven't seen anyone mention their experience with them on this board.
     
  15. bachelorb

    bachelorb Well-Known Member

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  16. MELOC

    MELOC Master Of My Domain

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    i would try to check with the well drillers and those who have wells to see what kind of water table you have and how deep it is. i had always heard that the "good water" was down deep. the theory being that the water near the surface contained all of the runoff pollutants and bacteria from animal and human waste.

    my neighbor had a well dug and hit water within the first thirty feet. he passed on that and they drilled to 675 feet to hit his "good water". the area is limestone. i have no idea what the geology is where you live. i would say no matter where you live the deeper concerns are relative to the geology of your area. i would guess that surface water and shallow water share many of the same problems everywhere, however. so, i guess i am saying shy away from surface water everywhere but investigate what is down deep.

    personally, i think that if you are filtering the water you should be ok. as long as you maintain the filter.

    i bet my next thought has no practical application but i will express it anyhow, lol. i once saw an example of a totally organic septic system that treated the overflow water to the point where it could be consumed...imagine that. the guy made several stages of ponds or bogs full of plants like cat of nine tails, day lillies etc. the plants purified the water. maybe there would be a way to build a bog and pretreat water naturally, but i really have no idea.
     
  17. oldduke

    oldduke Member

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    It sounds like you have water that will flow to the house under it's own power if it's up hill.Then all you need is some more pipe and trench.Dig in a bit of culvert or what have you for a well source.insulate as best you can. install pipe. You may have to prime it to start the flow.If it flows too fast it may i think the word is cavitate.all this means is you will get some air and the water will need to be reprimed.to cure this install a reducer in the house end of pipe.thats just a wooden plug with a little notch so some water keeps flowing.We used to get ours this way about a 1000 feet away from the house.it needs to flow into a tank with overflow.if you want more water adjust the notch in your stick.
     
  18. MELOC

    MELOC Master Of My Domain

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    a toilet float works well for supplying water to a cistern at a slow rate. my brother and uncles made a water line for 5 families that took water from a stream into a cistern next to the stream. a 2 inch line acts as the mainline and carries water via gravity. the line carries little volume so everyone on the line except for the last house has a cistern. my brother chose to install a ball float so that his cistern would fill slow and not take too much pressure from the line. i think it worked out well.
     
  19. ET1 SS

    ET1 SS zone 5 - riverfrontage Supporter

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    I once used a 'hydra-drill' well drilling setup.

    http://www.deeprock.com/hydra drill main.htm

    It worked very nicely for me.

    You can drill your own well, 20', 40', 80', 500'; as you wish.

    Also if your on a hillside, you can drill sideways (horizonal) into the hill, it you hit an aquafer, it will flow out as a stream for you.

    If your concerned about uric acid in the ground water. Make yourself a pool. Drop a sump-pump into the pool and shoot water up high into the air, wow what a nice pretty fountain. (that also sterilizes the water and cleans the uric acid out of it).

    good luck

    :D