Water!

Curious what you guys use for water. I have the option of connecting to ‘rural water’ which is treated and come from a local river or I can dig a well. Rural water is $7.50 / 1000 gallons up to 10k gallons, after that it drops by $1. Well water is free + electricity. Well water is significantly harder than rural water, plus possibility of having to deal with sediment, etc.

For those of you who irrigate, wondering what water source you use and how much it costs you… Advice and personal experience/stories welcome!

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we have well water. sediment problems only happen in spring when the water table is high. i have to go around a couple times and clean the screens on the faucets and washer but besides that its been good. but our water isn’t very hard here. we don’t have a choice here in the country.

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Lot of variables. How deep is your water table? Is the level stable, or does it raise and lower with the seasons? Worst case, is the water table steadily dropping from increased pumping? While the water may be free, there are costs beyond just the electricity, cost and maintaining the pump itself, cost of drilling the well, etc. Will the water be used strictly for irrigation, or will some be used for culinary or livestock water? We are on a well in the high desert of southern Idaho. Well had to be drilled to 415 feet deep 2 years ago, due to steadily dropping water table. Great water though.

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My well was 110 ft down and used a jet system. That only lasted 10 years before the submerged jet nozzle clogged. I also had a failure of the pump motor. I replaced it with a submerged pump. That one cost me $3000+. I used a cartridge filter to remove sediment. The well water tasted great but had high levels of iron. When I had the opportunity to hook up to town water I did. The submerged pump lasted about 15 years than stopped working. I have higher pressure with the town water. I don’t remember the per gallon charge but in the summer the bill is no more than $30 per month and $12 in the winter so not much more than $200 a year.

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You have to look at the true costs of both. With well water you have to maintain the well and equipment after it is drilled. Around my place drilling the well can cost several thousand dollars alone. I can use a lot of water before I save enough to recover the cost of drilling a well. I would prefer having my own well but the cost do not make sense in my case. When I need to irrigate I have three spring fed ponds on my place I can pump out of to water my trees and garden if I need to.

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Well water here, very hard.

Municipal water charges very very high, and not available here, but the costs of maintaining the well are considerably lower, over time.

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Well water. I use filtration (3 stage) on the drinking/cooking water. My well was put in sometime in the 90s… Newer wells around here are drilled around 60 feet…older wells were only around 25 feet in some areas. There is a public water spigot down the road a few miles at a park and i noticed that water has a ton of iron in it…where the water here has little to none…it is hard though…probably a lot of calcium/mg…my TDS meter shows about 300 out of the faucet where rain water will register about 10 to 15. Also the water here even in the middle of July is ice cold. Temp seems to run low to mid 50Fs depending on time of year…which makes sense because our avg yearly temp is somewhere in that range.

City water in this area i believe runs about $75 every 3 months, but i know there has been talk of raising that or maybe they have.

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Well water for the house, creek water for the gardens.

Unfortunately the creek is on the other side of the road so I pump it into a 150 gallon “water wagon”, haul it with the tractor up to the gardens and transfer it again into three IBC totes. I have the IBC totes up on a few cinder blocks so i can fill buckets and watering cans via gravity.

Kind of a pain, but most years I only need to fill the totes two times.

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i guess we are lucky then. our well is a tub type made 40 yrs ago . it goes down about 50ft. the pump hast been replaced as far as we know for the 40yrs. my wife was here for 30 of those. never run out of water. maybe because we are at the bottom of a hill and the property next to us has standing water in all but the driest years.

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Well water from about 68 feet down for irrigation and ground source heat pump. We have a fairly large lot and we run the well quite a bit during the summer, and during cold months it can run around the clock for a month or six weeks. It does not have a pressure tank (well, it has a tiny one, but that’s practically unused) relying instead on a “Cycle-Stop” system so that the irrigation or the heat pump water either one bypass the pressure tank. That’s supposed to save your well pump. We’ve had the same 1/2 hp pump for about 15 years. Entire system cost us about $2500, IIRC.

City water for the household, costs us about $30/month but we’re fairly reckless with our use of it.

Either way we’re using water from the same aquifer and it’s all pretty hard. I keep threatening to switch the house over to the well but DW hasn’t shown any enthusiasm and I’m not sure of the advantages, so we are sticking with the status quo for now.

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We have city water out here in the boonies, they’ve only had it for about 20 years. Before that, everyone had wells. The water seems to be overly high in chlorine, so I use a two stage Aquasana filter for our drinking water.

Since our niece and nephew live in our old house, our city water bill runs about $60 for both houses per month, since it runs off the same tap.

Even though they’ve not been used in a long time, there’s a dug well by the old house and a 6in drilled well close to the cellar with a metal casing.

I bought a hand pump system to put in that drilled well years ago, but it still has lines that run into from the cellar, which at one time had an electric pump. I’d like to get those lines pulled out and the hand pump put in, as a back-up source of water. A few times we’ve lost city water when there’s been bad floods that wash out lines further up the road.

The water table is very close to the surface, usually no lower than 20ft. We have many areas on the hillside where water just seeps up from the ground. With lots of limestone, I guess it makes the water somewhat hard. But, I’ve heard from folks who live closer to the creek bottoms, that their well water had lots of iron or sulfur. So I guess we’re better off that way.

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Newly grafted trees in pots are kept close to the house and get “city water”. Mother nature has taken care of trees planted out in my orchard space so far. The longest dry spell we’ve had hasn’t really impacted those trees, but then they’re all basically not mature enough to fruit yet. When they do (there’s always next year!) I realize ample water is vital. I have a spring and branch that flows at the foot of this space, about 20’ to 30’ in elevation lower. I hope to build a ram pump and experiment with pushing water up the hill to them. Be fun to play around with if nothing else…

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I love this place with people who have such ideas of fun

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@TheDerek
Have you considered a rainwater catchment system of some type? Like the old saying when it rains it poors except this is a good thing when it poors good luck on you!

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I do collect a 100 gallons or so of rainwater for watering blueberries, gardenia, other tropicals and whatever other plants i think will like soft water (that is also warm which i think helps a lot—cold well water can’t be good on roots of tropicals?) I fill my small backyard pond with rainwater mostly too…but do add hose water if the temp gets too warm. Rainwater has been very plentiful so not much watering has been required.

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Right now I have no buildings to catch rain water from unfortunately. I think that would work well for a smaller area, but Ive been thinking about putting in a few acres of haskap or cherries, need something more prolly to water a larger area when it is hot/dry outside… Should have bought land along a river probably, hard to find tho! I guess I should just let my plants go for now and see how they handle august, possibly they wont need supplemental water, hard to say. I did rip the ground where they are planted down to about 24 inches, so they shouldnt have too much problem going that deep at least to find moisture.

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The lower Mississippi River basin is experiencing some challenges with their water supply currently.

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When we built in 2001… the city water line ended at my neighbors house up the road a bit…

Our city actually ran water outside the city limits… quite a bit… and all the way to my neighbors house. My land is just across the road from his driveway and i had them set a meter for me there and l ran water 700ft down to our house.

We are about 3 miles outside the city limits… but have city water. It is a little expensive (60.00 - 70.00 bucks a month range) but has been problem free for 22 years now.

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We also have “city water” but are far outside their city limits. Since we don’t pay that particular city tax our water rate is double what city residents pay. Annoying but I suppose fair, taxes to help pay for infrastructure maintenance.

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Water is a bargain for most people. My water is $25 a month but it may be brown more often than i want it to be. If it is brown i might hold off on washing my whites a few days. My other property has nothing like a water meter. If it did i wouldn’t use it anyway. There is good ground water there, timber , grain fields, a 5 acre pond with plenty of fish. The best part is i have not planted nuts and fruit yet but once i have it will be a paradise.

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