Water Wells

Water on the Homestead

For persons living near these water sources, a shallow well may still be the best choice, allowing for the ground layers to filter the water. Sometimes you hit a spring and it flows all year.

Build Your own Water Filtration System

Other homesteaders will require a deeper well, usually into the bed rock, unless they have gravel or sand just before it.

Water Well Drilling

Years ago, large drilling rigs were used to dig wide-open wells but more and more people are using small six inch diameter iron pipe. The choice is mostly determined by the well driller’s equipment. Smaller wells also prevent small children and livestock from falling into them, and this may be the reason for the newer sizes.

The rig will drill down until it hits water that provides at usually close to five gallons per minute.

Submersible pumps make for quiet operations but may be heavy if going down deep, due to the length of line filled with water. No problem until one needs repair!

Pumps in the house or basement make maintenance easier but they may not have the horsepower to pull water the required distance. Therefore a pump house might be located close to the well, as it will push water further than it can pull. Sizing the motor is also important depending on distance from the house or barn.

Some pumps have a return line to help push the water. They are called Twin Jet pumps.

In cold climates, a heat lamp will be necessary to keep the pump from freezing if in a pump house. Submersible pumps eliminate the need for a heat lamp.

4 thoughts on “Water Wells”

  1. Hi Debbie,

    The question about freezing directly relates to the climate in which the driven point well was made. Generally, up here in -45 temperatures, the earth below 6-8 feet does not freeze. Once you move closer to the surface, you risk freezing because the air is getting colder. You can help prevent this by wrapping the pipe in foam insulation. They sell white foam with a hole in it, split in half lengthwise for that purpose. I would talk to the local people to see if you need to be concerned.

  2. When I first moved into my winterized cottage I was surprised to find the well pump house heated with heat lamp and a timer. I noticed you suggested this as well. May I caution you on relying on a heat lamp to keep your well pump from freezing . Light bulbs burn out and don’t warn you of a problem. I swapped this out for small inexpensive ceramic box heater. Set the temperature knob in the fall and it comes on and off according to the temperature and not a timer. This has worked great for 8 years.

  3. Thanks Gary for that wise comment. It is true that bulbs burn out without warning and we seem to rely on them too much. Ceramic box heaters work well but eventually they also fail. Diligence is always needed here. In fact, my preference is a deep well pump, with everything else in the house where it is easier to monitor.

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