I don’t think I’ve mentioned it here yet, but a few months ago we were finally able to afford to get a hand pump installed on our well. We went with a Simple Pump, because as I’ve mentioned in the past, they’re the only pump that would work on our deep well and deliver pressurized water to our house. So far we’re very pleased with our investment.
We hired a plumber to install the pump, since we really didn’t know what we were doing. He’s a local guy who we’ve worked with before, and who is totally into our off-grid project, so it was fun working with him. He was excited to see how the pump worked- having never installed a Simple Pump before.
Although the hand pump has been on our well for a while now, we haven’t had much time to mess with it since the winter weather has come in. It sits alongside our submersible electric pump. This week the weather has been warm, so we’ve taken advantage of the opportunity to turn our electric pump off and see how the hand pump works.
It took Jerry and I a while to figure out what all of the knobs and levers of our plumbing system do. But after trial and error we learned the right combination to getting the water to the pressure tank and from there to the house.
Our pressure tank is only big enough to supply us with 5 gallons of pressurized water to the house at a time. I plan on using rain water from our rain barrels for most of our washing water and toilet flushing, trying to save the hard-earned tap water for drinking mostly.
I hope to write about our hand pump setup in more detail soon. I need to make notes on how often we need to hand pump, how many strokes it takes to fill 5 gallons, how we conserve the water, etc.
Jerry is working on building a shelter over the pump today. We’ll also be building insulated housing to go around the tank and electrical components to keep them protected from the elements.
It feels good to have this important backup in place.