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Author Topic: pump suggestion for rainwater tank  (Read 2443 times)
mr_magicfingers
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« on: May 13, 2020, 11:05:45 AM »

When we first bought our little farm 7 years ago, I had plans for rainwater harvesting from the barns. 7 years later, I'm finally getting started on it. When we put in the new mains water lines, I put in a second set alongside than went back up to the barn so that the plumbing was in place when needed, which meant the only cost was some extra rolls of blue pipe,

I recently wombled a 1500l water tank that had been abandoned and cleaned it out. With some garden mesh and an old flower pot cut to the right size I had a filter and then positioned it under the gutter on one side of a barn. Eventually I hope to add more tanks but they're quite expensive so I want to make sure everything works with this tank first before a larger investment. It didn't take long to fill up the current tank and water was flowing to the various taps in the allotment and garden. Now, the tap down at the side of the house is the lowest and the pressure there is reasonable but the taps in the allotment are higher and just don't get enough pressure so I'm looking at putting in a pump that activates when a tap is opened so watering in the polytunnel and allotment is just a matter of turning on the tap.

I've seen this pump in Mole Valley Farmers for what seems a reasonable price but figured I'd check here to see if anyone thought it a reasonable buy or if there's something better suited out there. The main piping from the tank is 32mm with 25mm leaders up to each tap so something that links in to regular blue water pipe would be the best option rather than a domestic hose connection.

Also, some photos of the setup.



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kdmnx
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« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2020, 11:45:45 AM »

I looked into this years ago. I was converting a big Victorian house into a smart 8-bed student let, the water pressure wasn't up to the job because of the 8 bedrooms all with ensuite bathrooms with their own shower and toilet were overwhelming the supply.

Loads of solutions available, they come in all the usual sizes so one sutible for connecting to a 35mm mains supply pipe will be easy to source, they all consist of a pump and buffer tank. None of the options were that cheap (looking at a grand or 2 10 years ago) and it got de-specced from the build due to cost so I didn't get any hands-on experience.

However I would comment that the item in the picture doesn't look like it'd do the job. You'd want a much bigger buffer tank otherwise you'll turn on the tap and get a nice flow for about 2 seconds, but the pressure will have dropped again before you've filled a bucket/watering can!

Maybe something like this would do the job? https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01NATU1R9/ref=cm_sw_em_r_mt_dp_U_wc9UEbTGZGBHJ
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billi
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« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2020, 12:15:08 PM »

Well , the  pump is quite pricey ,  over 300 GBP   , pumps like that have  advantages   and disatvantages , personally i prefer the ones with  electronic preassure control , instead  the pressure-vessel idea , so  a constant same pressure is  achieved  something like that https://www.amazon.co.uk/T-I-P-31142-Domestic-Water-Stainless/dp/B0001P4RVC/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?dchild=1&keywords=AL-KO+HWA&qid=1589368610&s=diy&sr=1-1-fkmr0
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Countrypaul
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« Reply #3 on: May 13, 2020, 12:19:07 PM »

How much water flow do you need and for how long?  The pump will deliver 45L/minute with a 30M head which sounds to me like overkill for what you actually need if it just needs a small boost. If you expect the booster to run for an hour at a time (close to 3000L) then the more robust pump might be worthwhile.

If runing for an hour than can also be close to 1/2-1 kWh of electricity used on the larger pumps.

I have no idea about warantees on any of these, they were just the first ones I noticed.  

A quick check shows a couple of options on Amazon: https://www.amazon.co.uk/CLARKE-ELECTRIC-WATER-BOOSTER-LITRE/dp/B006YM0AG2?ref_=fsclp_pl_dp_5
https://www.amazon.co.uk/KATSU%C2%AEFull-Automatic-Priming-Water-Booster/dp/B01MS81NQR?ref_=fsclp_pl_dp_6

Given the size of your pipes I suspect flow rate is unlikely to be the limiting factor.

I thought blue pipe was only supposed to be used for potable water and black with green stripe is to be used for rainwater?

Billi got in before me but his suggestion avoids replacing bladders every now and then.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2020, 12:22:26 PM by Countrypaul » Logged
mr_magicfingers
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« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2020, 12:25:20 PM »

Thanks, some great suggestions there and much cheaper than I originally expected.

Currently there's almost no flow at the allotment taps, just a low pressure dribble. Flow needed is just for watering plants with a hose spray and needs to run for an hour as we work around the allotment. At some point we might put in an automatic valve and some droppers but again, doesn't need particularly high pressure or flow rate.

Didn't know about the rainwater pipe colour, I've put tags on all the rainwater taps and none are in the house. I just bought some extra pipe when I was putting it in and threw two lines in the trench instead of one. If we sell the farm one day, I'll make sure the new owners are aware.

The 200w Katsu pump does look like it would do the job very well and not take too much power either.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2020, 12:32:07 PM by mr_magicfingers » Logged

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knighty
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« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2020, 12:27:40 AM »

ohhh.... I've used loads of pumps like these at work!

part of our water regs is making sure no dog food can get sucked back up a hose pipe.... only real way to do it is have all our water in a tank and then pump it around

had to bodge the original system together pretty quickly, so have tried a few different things/ways to do it

for what you want.... buy a cheap pump like this....

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/173569082620

the diaphragm in the tank will go long before the pump does (they are replaceable tho)

you might (will probably) need a one way valve on the pump inlet too (if it doesen't come with one)

check the pressure in the diaphragm when there's no pressure in the system (taps on and pump off) - it should be 80% of normal running pressure
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Iain
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« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2020, 06:24:06 AM »

Hi
I fitted a header tank in the shed at the top of the garden as high as possible. A 200 Ltr barrel suspended horizontally  under the high point.
I feed it with one of these

https://www.machinemart.co.uk/p/clarke-ceb103-1-230v-centrifugal-brass-body/

The header tank gives me about 1 m head over the toilets in the upstairs of the  house.
This,is enough for the inlet valves to work.
I use a float switch in the header tank, operating a relay which in turn operates the pump.

If you have the height for a header tank this works well, been working very well for about 12 years.
Then from the header tank all is under gravity

My system feeds 2 toilets upstairs, 2 outside taps, 2 taps downstairs (for rinsing things) and the washing machine in the garage (for my dirty overalls).
My monthly consumption is about 2 m3 from the rainwater and 4 m3 from the mains.

Iain
« Last Edit: May 14, 2020, 06:37:45 AM by Iain » Logged

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mr_magicfingers
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« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2020, 09:13:12 AM »

Knighty, that sounds like an interesting system you have. I think the 1100W and 4m3/hour is a bit overkill for what I need though.

Iain, there's no need for a header tank, the rainwater tank is the highest point in the system, the pipes go downhill from there to the taps, it's just that the allotment taps are only a meter or two below the tank. I just need to push the water to give it enough pressure for the hose.

I'm going to go with the 200w Katsu pump, that should be plenty for me needs.
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dickster
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« Reply #8 on: May 14, 2020, 10:20:32 AM »

I got a hoselock garden water butt pump from B & Q, bolted a Machine Mart pressure switch on it and pump our rainwater out of the old bottle septic tank to feed loo and washing machine.

Cheap and still working very well some 5 years later.
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