Well to cistern suggestions

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rmcdona2

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Hello folks,

I am new to wells and have recently moved into a house that has a 6000 gallon cistern located underground beside it. The cistern is piped into the house and there is a pump, pressure switch and tank in the basement of the house. This all works great, until the cistern runs dry and it costs many hundreds of dollars to have a truck come and fill it. There is an existing well on the property, that is not connected to anything. The well is about 150 ft below the elevation of the house and about 900 ft away (the house is on a big hill). I am looking for the simplest and most economical way to get the well water to the house. To that end, I was considering using the well to periodically fill the cistern and keep everything else as is. The well shed currently has power to it with it's own hydro meter. I live in a freezing climate in Canada, with very rocky and hard soil. I have been quoted $25k just to dig a trench for a water line which is going to be embedded in sand at an 8 ft depth. Since the run is all uphill from the well to the cistern, I was considering just doing a shallow line (2 ft) that will self drain, and periodically run it a couple of times a month to fill the cistern.

Does this sound like a stupid idea?

If not, would a 1 inch line do the trick? What other factors do I need to consider?

If so, what other options do I have to consider?

Appreciate any help and comments.
 

Valveman

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900' is a long ways for 1" pipe. But it will work with less than 5 GPM flow. If you run some wires in the ditch from the well to the cistern for the float switch in the cistern will automatically fill the cistern as needed. With this type setup a drain back should be easy to install, which will keep the line from freezing. With a below ground cistern a submersible well pump is best as it doesn't need priming and is completely silent. But a jet pump will also work as you have now.

Well feeding cistern with sub booster.jpg


If you cannot run wires for the float switch you can still use the well to fill the cistern, but the line between the two will need to stay pressurized and not drain back.

Well feeding house and cistern with sub booster.jpg
 

rmcdona2

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Thank you very much for the detailed response. I was considering just running the well pump manually when the cistern got low. The cistern is 6000G and I could just monitor the level and once a month or so manually run the pump for a day (at 5GPM) to fill. The float switch is a good idea though, I will consider that and look into the expenses associated with it.

Will I still be able to get the 5GPM with the 150' vertical rise in a 1 inch pipe? Is there some easy way to calculate that?

On a related note, I have no idea what type of pump is in the well. Is there any way to test what size of pump is down there without pulling the pump out? What size of pump would I need for this setup?
 
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