Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The construction of our hand pump well

Our house is a 175 year old farm house, one of the oldest in the area. About a year after we moved here we discovered the farms original well in the front yard covered over by a large stone and a thin layer of soil and grass. It was a perfect opportunity to install a hand pump to the well that could be used for an emergency water supply during power outages and also to water the livestock in the wintertime instead of bringing buckets into the house to fill at the sink.

My husband designed and build the entire pump using common pvc parts that could be found at any hardware store. 

diagram of the pump construction above the surface

above surface pump handle (right) and one way valves (left)

 It works best on a shallow well, the one we have is just over 20 feet deep. At the surface, a 3/4" pvc pipe runs inside of a 1 1/2" pipe that is also encased in a more sturdy 3" pipe for structure. A toilet flange bolts the pump to the deck.
diagram of the bottom of the pusher
This leads down to the pusher at the bottom of the pump.

diagram of the pump construction below the water 

one way valves that sit below the water

The pusher ends at two one way valves below the water's level. The water is pushed through these valves to a second pipe that leads back to the surface. (the diagram is slightly different than the final design but it explains the construction well)

Right now I am jealous of the low level of the snow in these pictures. :P

The well has been in place for three years now and has worked better than I think we imagined it would. Since all moving parts are 20 feet below ground it never freezes and I have water throughout the winter months. The only flaw is nature itself. During the driest parts of the summer the well will go dry and rarely in winter when we have gone a long time without any melt down. But, for the most part, no more wet or muddy boots going into the house to get water!

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