Solar Well Install-photo journal
AFTER 12 YEARS of using Rain water....I installed a solar well!
After waiting in line for months for my well to be drilled, it was time to add the pump and pipes. Once the well was drilled I found out it was only a low flow well....only around 100 gallons a day. In this case a solar pump is good for both low flow and a gravity fed tank. I did my research and found RPS.
The RPS SOLAR PUMP KITS: are the best! I ordered the RPS400 solar panel kit without the solar panels and they sat in my shed for months until I had time to put it in.
FIRST THE DITCHES: This week I finished about 50 feet of ditches. A 20" deep ditch for the water line to connect the well into the house supply line (goes up to gravity tank). Another to install the electrical conduit from well to rps controller, and a small ditch from a pre installed #10 wire from generator to the converter next to the controller. The converter is for situaltions when you want to pump well and there is no light. It is a dc to ac box with an auto switch so in the winter if there is low light I can turn on the generator and the converter senses it and switches on the pump bypassing the solar.
SOLAR ARBOR FOR WELL: I built another solar arbor just for the solar well. Built of pressure treated 4x4 and 2x6s, I then mounted four renology 100w 12v panels for the RPS400 Pump. After using the RPS calculator, it seemed I could have used the smaller 200 pump. But I opted for the bigger pump and four panels. In the end it wasn't necissary but I am glad to have too much rather than too little power.
WELL HEAD AND PIPING: After deciding on 1" pipe not 3/4, I used brass fittings for the well seal. I used black poly pipe for the water line up. Then attached the #12 submersable electrical well wire. After some research I decided to add a faucet onto the brass T on well head to do testing and maybe water the garden directly when pumping the well. BUT have to remember to NEVER leave pump on if both water valve(to gravity tank) and faucet is turned off !
PUTTING IT ALTOGETHER: It took me and an electrician friend about 8 hours to assemble the 80 feet of poly pipe, the pump, well sensor, safety rope and well seal assembly (there was also a check valve on pump). We installed the controller and the converter onto the solar arbor for convenience.
TESTING: Once the poly pipe was added to gravity tank and the sensor installed insdie tank it was ready to test. The next day I emptied the well of 150 gallons of water. It took about one hour. I noticed when the sun wasn't full on the panels it ran weaker, but it did rise to about 100psi at full sun.
GRAVITY TANK: If your lucky enough to have the water tank feed your house from above....it can use gravity! Mine tested at about 30 psi (I use a little psi gauge I bought at ace hardware) as it is placed about 90-120 ft above my house. So its pressure is enough for faucets but just not quite good enough for little eccotemp(or the bigger marey water heater in house) to operate steadily. Thus a shurflo pump is ready for install beneath the house....luckily I placed an electrical plug under house for light. So will just plug in the shurflo after adding an manual switch (it turns on automatically when you open tap, but I like the ability to turn off pump manually too)
The water system is not finished but it's close.....just need to add filters and the booster pump under house.
Hi! I am an artist and a carpenter living in the woods of Washington! This is my off grid story.
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