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Tractor PTO water pump for light irrigation.....

 
John Weiland
pollinator
Posts: 1488
Location: RRV of da Nort
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I would like to use my tractor PTO to run a centrifugal pump of the following type [ http://www.pumpbiz.com/shopping_product_detail.asp?pid=69558 ] to irrigate our garden plot, when needed. I've tried roller pumps in the past, but wore them out too quickly as they are designed more for spray applications. The rise needed is about 30 ft and the distance from the water source (slow moving river) is about 300 ft. In the past, I've never needed to water more than 1.5 hr to complete the job using a standard garden hose and well-water/pressure.....ditto for when I was using the roller pump. Thoughts on doing this? I've also given some thought to using a wind-mill pump to transfer water from that river up to a tank and then use gravity to push water out the hose when needed for watering.

Thanks for comments and suggestions.
 
Jack Edmondson
pollinator
Posts: 301
Location: Central Texas zone 8a, 800 chill hours 28 blessed inches of rain
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John,

Wow! Maybe I am missing something. That is a $900 pump that give you roughly 5,000 gallons a hour and you run the fuel through your tractor to power it. Why would you not do something like this: Water pump That sells for about half the price, delivers 10,000 gallons a hour and probably uses less fuel? Perhaps you already own the pump so the cost is moot?

Otherwise the head height is good and the lateral distance should not be a problem. I would do hard pipe for 300 ft rather than a hose. Pump to a storage tank or cistern above the garden and let gravity do the rest.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Posts: 5104
Location: Cache Valley, zone 4b, Irrigated, 9" rain in badlands.
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I loved our PTO driven water pump... We used it for decades to water 15 acres. I don't remember the tractor or the pump ever needing anything other than routine maintenance during that time... And with a gentle load like water pumping, the tractor sipped fuel. I expect that a light duty gas engine would have burned up during the first growing season.

 
John Wolfram
pollinator
Posts: 722
Location: Porter, Indiana
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Joseph Lofthouse wrote:I loved our PTO driven water pump... We used it for decades to water 15 acres. I don't remember the tractor or the pump ever needing anything other than routine maintenance during that time... And with a gentle load like water pumping, the tractor sipped fuel. I expect that a light duty gas engine would have burned up during the first growing season.


While a trash pump would probably burn up in a year trying to water 15 acres, the OP's water usage is far less. The OP said he waters for an hour and a half with a garden hose. Figuring 4 gallons a minute from the hose, that is only 360 gallons per watering session. If we figure he waters 52 times each year, that only works out to 20,000 gallons a year, and the trash pump Jack mentioned is a 10,000 gallon per hour pump.
 
John Weiland
pollinator
Posts: 1488
Location: RRV of da Nort
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Thanks for all comments on my irrigation pump question. Indeed, I already have two of the trash-style centrifugal pumps alluded to (the Honda example shown by Jack E. is the exact model of one of them) since the same river that I wish to draw from has a tendency, during spring seasonal flooding, to end up in my basement putting quite a strain on the sump pumps. As indicated, this style of pump, especially in the more common "Pacer" brand, is relatively inexpensive. Yet with the short time involved in doing the watering, I've enjoyed just backing the tractor down near the river (it is not a steep bank) and hooking up the hoses to the pump. I'm not averse to spending a bit more on such a pump if it's something I can maintain and use for multiple purposes into the future. The tractors being used in this case run with ~20 hp diesel (Yanmar) engines and are quite efficient with fuel use.

One last question may have an obvious answer when considering how a standard well-pump works: Can I use a 2" hose for intake on the pump and then "step down" the size at the ejection port to a garden hose? I assume this would be similar to my well, that brings water up through 2" pipe into the ballast and from there it's all ~5/8" copper piping. Thanks for great responses
 
Tim Malacarne
Posts: 226
Location: South central Illinois, USA
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We've been watering out of the pond for years and years, here's the little I know: The bigger the pipe, the more water you get. At our place we ran 5/8" garden hose to the garden and could operate one rotary sprinkler. When I buried the inch and a quarter black pipe, like they use for wells and such, we could run 4 rotary sprinklers with the same pump... I have a half HP electric motor and an ancient Sears & Roebuck centrifugal pump, with a vee belt between them. Pump has gotta be 40 years old, wish I could find another! Has 1" intake, 3/4" discharge, works great.
If you have the time and inclination, I'd vote for some kind of renewable-powered pump to a tank, then gravity, or renewable again... Our garden plants are binge drinkers. I let 'em get pretty dry, then try to give them a good soaking. Works for me... Good luck!
 
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