Go Green – Well Water minus Electricity
With each well in each climate, a different method exists to obtain the well water. In West India for example, step wells are the norm in which a person would descend down steps to the water below and return with a filled container of said water.
Until recent centuries, dug wells were the standard and dropping an empty bucket down to the water below and pulling it back up was the simplest way to obtain well water.
Modern Water Pumps
Typically the easiest, and most cost-effective method to obtain well water is electricity. At times, however, situations require the use of other options. The following list delineates options on how to obtain well water without electricity.
1. Manual Water Pumps
Typically, a manual water pump is a hand water pump. Depending upon the brand and model of pump, you should be able to pump anywhere from 5 to 15 gallons of water per minute. This is a simple and economical solution to obtaining well water.
Unfortunately, a manual water pump does require a significant amount of physical exertion. This type of pump can also require quite a bit of maintenance. Further, at times it may be difficult to obtain spare parts for manual pumps as well.
A manual water pump is often used in tandem with an electric pump; however, a manual water pump can absolutely be utilized solo.
2. Solar Water Pumps
By harnessing the power of the sun you can obtain well water without the necessity of electricity. Solar pumps are relatively easy to install and can have a life expectancy of up to 20 years. A solar powered pump can provide upwards of 1,200 gallons of water a day.
The downside to a solar powered water pump is solar energy can be very seasonal. For example, in cloudy weather you will have a much lower output. A solar powered water pump generally has the highest initial cost for obtaining well water without electricity.
Solar water pumps are primarily utilized by rural farmers and ranchers who don’t have access to electricity for an electric pump.
3. Wind-Powered Water Pumps
Traditionally, windmills were the means whereby water was pumped from wells. Wind-powered water pumps are still an efficacious option. The pump coupled with the wind source are married into a fully functional system. The wind-powered option of drawing well water is the most cost effective as it generally requires very minimal maintenance.
The disadvantage of using a wind-powered water pump is the risk of a lack of wind for several days at a time. A back-up system, such as a manual pump, would be advisable.
4. Water Powered Water Pumps
While initially counterintuitive, water can be very successfully utilized to pump well water. By directing water through pipes, obtained from a local body of water, and then abruptly turning off the flow, the resulting water pressure surges and will propel the water upwards. The power of the water flow will depend upon the size of the pump, the amount of lift, and the amount of fall required.
Though useful, water powered water pumps are not an option for those without access to a large body of water.
5. Diesel Fueled Water Pumps
Diesel fueled water pumps are second only in productivity to electric pumps. These pumps are very easy to purchase and a relatively low cost.
6. Homemade Well Bucket
While not an ideal solution if a great deal of water is required, a homemade well bucket is an option for obtaining well water without electricity. Through either the use of a pulley system, or brute strength, this method requires being able to lift about 40 pounds at a time.
The obvious downside to a homemade well bucket is the amount of water obtained during each pull. The amount time and effort required to manually pull the water may not be ideal for many people.
While Jack and Jill may have been forced to go up a hill to fetch a pail of water, we thankfully have many options to obtain our well water. The key to successfully obtaining well water is to find out which option works best for you. Tailor your method after your needs and you’ll have a successful outcome.