Cistern Pumping

SystemSystem Posts: 2,511 admin
I have a dry cabin where am going to install an underground cistern for bringing water into the cabin. I have AC into my cabin from my inverter and at the location that I want to put the cistern, I don't have DC available. I am figuring that I will install a Shurflo 2088-594-154 for pumping from my underground cistern to provide water for two sinks in my cabin and a shower. I am trying to figure out how to plumb the system so I can easily drain the system back into the tank when I leave. My cabin is not heated and I don't want frozen pipes. Anybody have any good guidelines for system design in this case? Maybe a website I can look at? I have some ideas, but it isn't something I want to experiment on as all components to the system are not cheap. Thanks in advance.:confused:


  • SCharlesSCharles Solar Expert Posts: 123 ✭✭
    Re: Cistern Pumping

    Simplest thing to do would be to put a drain valve in line down in the cistern. Then put another at the far end of the water line, in the house. Open both valves and the water will run out through the cistern valve. I have the one in the house on a short pc of vertical line I plumbed in to the main line with a Tee. Does not matter how long [high] that little pc of line is as long as the valve is higher than any part of the pluming line. It helps if you plumb the house with a very slight rise all along the main line so there are no low spots, which will freeze. Or which can freeze if any water is left in them. The cost of the two valves will be probably no more than $10. If the house is already plumbed and there are areas or spots in the line(s) that are lower than the main line, you have little recourse other than installing more drain valves in the low spots.

    I am not familiar with your pump. If it is a pump you stick down in the water in the cistern, you can simply close the valves when you get there, open the farthest faucet in the line, and turn on the pump. If it is the type pump that is above the cistern and pulls water up from it, you'll need to charge the main line. I do this by sticking a funnel in the upper valve and filling the line with water from a gallon jug. Takes about five minutes to get it all done.
  • System2System2 Posts: 6,290 admin
    Re: Cistern Pumping

    Thanks. I'm thinking that is a good idea with the valves. My system will be fairly simple. What kind of pump do you use? I am trying to keep it simple to make it easy for my wife to get the system working and turn it off when I am not there.
  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,182 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Cistern Pumping

    make sure that every low spot can be drained with a ball valve or such. this will help avoid freezing problems

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