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Can I use solar to move water up into a tower/tank?  RSS feed

 
Bart Brinkmann
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So I've been throwing around some different ideas of moving water from a ground-level or in-ground cistern and up to a storage tank that's either detached or built into the attic of a house.

I've thought about a simple solar panel that runs directly to a small pump without even bothering with a battery - just having the tank fill when there's enough solar power to run the pump. This would be cheaper than worrying about a complicated solar setup, if it would work.

Also wondering if there might be a way of using some black pipe on a rooftop and taking advantage of thermodynamics (maybe some sort of thermal siphon?) to move the water upward. I've still got about a year before we get serious about building, but these are the ideas I kick around in my head as I cruise the internet

Thoughts?
 
Troy Rhodes
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Thermosyphon won't get it done. It requires water to be elevated (compared to the place where the water is being heated) to start with.


Solar panels and dc pumps are a real possibility.

How much water do you need to move in a day?

And how high is the storage tank, compared to the starting elevation of the water?

Is the high tank destined to provide water pressure for all the lower fixtures in a house??


thanks in advance for details..

troy
 
Bart Brinkmann
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Troy,

Thanks for the reply - sorry I didn't give much detail there.

I'm still debating the idea of using the water for our house, since most places around here have good wells. Mostly I'm interested in using it to provide water to a large (hopefully 1/4 acre minimum) garden and some trees. From what I've read so far, it doesn't sound like the tank would have to be too high to provide drip irrigation, which is what I'd rely on as much as possible. I haven't even tried to figure out how much water storage I'd need... I thought I'd worry about the logistics of getting water where I needed it before I tried figuring out how much of it to store

If solar is an option, I guess I'd better start with that and see what sort of output is required to power various pump sizes. Aside from the initial cost of the panel and the pump (and the second, higher reservoir), I'm hoping I can figure something out that's fairly maintenance-free.

Thanks for the input,

-Bart
 
kevin stewart
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Hi
The drip timers sold at home depot need water pressure to open.
I did buy 'gilmour' ball valve timers but two of them leaked and maybe thats why they are out of stock.

I have decided that my next drip system will be a 500gph bilge pump attached to a solar panel. The pump will be activated by a 12 volt timer. Maybe better still just hook the timer to your house system, using the timer.

Timer on amazon $10.00
Used pump from minney's less than $20.00
I am happy with solar panels from 'solar blvd'. Unless you live near Norco california they sell online. (Also on amazon?)
But a three amp panel is $58.00

The problem with low pressure is getting water to all the drips equally. I think the small 500gph will do it.
If you needed to simply move water a long distance then a 24 volt bilge pump will do it so much better than 12 volt. But not on your drip system. I think 24volt would be too much power.
 
Tom Connolly
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Keep in mind that if you put a tank on top of your house or in your attic you have to reinforce the house accordingly to support the weight. The only good reason I can think of to put a tank in the attic is to utilize heat from your house to keep it from freezing in the winter - if you live in such a climate. If you just want use gravity to do a drip system for gardening you can build a foundation of earthbags to put your tank on. That way if it leaks, it will not spoil your viewing of the superbowl
 
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