Turned the well pump on today…

I dipped the tank this morning and we’re down to about 1100 gallons. The tank capacity is 2400, so we’re below 50%. If I weren’t going away for three weeks I’d have left the experiment running longer, but we do have some results…


The resting pressure is a little more than 1 PSI lower now than it was when I installed the gauge almost exactly a month ago…


Which, since the gauge is so absurdly big, is noticeable if you pay any attention at all.

Later in the summer I’ll let the tank go lower, but I don’t want to leave it less than half full for the better part of a month lest it really go empty on me.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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9 Responses to Turned the well pump on today…

  1. Cederq says:

    Do you have a well on your property Joel? Do you have an algae or scum problem in your tank leaving out in the sun?

  2. Joel says:

    The well is up on the top of the ridge behind the cabin, 40-50 feet above the kitchen sink. It has a proper opaque plastic tank which does not admit light and so prevents algae growth.

  3. Paul B says:

    Was wondering about the source. Now if you have a windmill on the well with some parts for repairs for the gearbox and pump you are ok if electricity goes.

  4. Cederq says:

    So you only turn the pump on when you fill the tank. Do you power it off of your Solar power and batteries? And then is it why you only use the pump to fill, not you use on-demand? I see that you have head pressure from the tank being that high. How is the quality of the water?

  5. Joel says:

    I only run the pump to fill the tank because there seems to be something wrong with the charge controller because it’s ignoring the float switch and doesn’t automatically shut off when the tank is full. The pump has its own power supply, a single solar panel powers the charge controller which powers the pump when the sun is shining. There’s no battery, it’s entirely independent of the cabin power.

    The water is technically potable, it’s not actually toxic, but it’s so hard with dissolved calcium and iron that a steady diet will tend to cause kidney stones. Ask me how I know. So I use it for all purposes except drinking – I haul in drinking water from town once a week.

  6. Cederq says:

    If ya don’t mind me asking, what is the make and model and specs of that charger controller. I have a friend that has a well/solar electric company that puts in well pumps and solar collectors much like you have for the farmers around here to water their cattle at remote sites. I’ll see if he has one and ship it to you. I have the same kind of problem here with the small town I live in, the water is very hard and choke full of iron and has what I call pond scum, your white linen and towels turn orange and brown and you can’t drink it with out getting a stomach ache and problems. Everybody buys filtered water from suppliers.

  7. Joel says:

    Cederq, it’s a Sun Pumps PCA 30-M1D.

    Specifications:

    Max Load Power: 150 watts
    Max Load Current: 5 amps
    Max Open Circuit Voltage: 45 volts
    Max Regulated Output Voltage: 30

    And yeah, I think it’s primarily intended for remote livestock watering. But it works great (except for stated issues) and after all, I’m remote livestock that needs to be watered. 🙂

  8. Cederq says:

    Thanks for the Sunday morn laugh, we all are livestock, some are more equal livestock then others…

  9. jon spencer says:

    You will probably need a digital gauge to accurately read the level in the tank. Because 1 psi is 2.31 feet of water and a steam gauge is hard to read unless you go to a very high quality and high dollar pressure gauge.

    So with that “steam” gauge you could miss one psi and be roughly 4 feet off in the tanks level.

    Digital gauges run from $25 and up and they usually read in tenth’s or hundredth of a foot.

To the stake with the heretic!