Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Rebuilding the well house

 The well house that's served the farm is about 70 years old.  And it's in pretty poor shape.  It has the added problem that it's built on grade - that is, on ground level, and it can get flood water in it.  This building flooded 3 times in 2015 - a bad  year, to be sure, but you really don't want important farm infrastructure to flood. 
 The old well house is in the foreground to the right.  The new one is getting framed in the background to the left.   Since we had concrete trucks on site because of the big barn project I poured a foundation and walls for the well house, using the elevation of the main house as a guide.  That lifted the well house about 30" above grade, which should keep the interior safe from future floods. 

Here the sheathing has been applied.  The white pipe out the doorway is the temporary plumbing.  The output from the well is already in the new well house, I rigged up a temporary pipe from there to the old wellhouse until I got the whole system moved. 

While I was at it, I also improved the well house in the following ways:

installed a water manifold with a valve for every farm area that this well house serves, so you can turn on, or off, portions of the farm water from this building without affecting other areas.

Installed an anti-backflow valve, which isn't really needed here - I have an artesian well, and water flows out of it even when the pump is turned off - but it is required if I ever want to have the farm certified for food production, like cheesemaking or as a butcher shop.

I built the new wellhouse a little larger than the old one to allow me to stock salt (used by the water treatment equipment) in the wellhouse itself.  I made it large enough that I can stack a pallet of salt inside and still have room to access the valves and equipment.  The local hardware store gives me a discount for buying full pallets of salt, and salt doesn't spoil (as long as you keep it dry), so I try to buy a years supply at a time.  

The concrete pad for the well house also serves as a base for my farms standby generator, which will sit on the side opposite the doorway shown. 

I think I'll have enough spare panels and metal from the big barn project to roof and side this new building with the same metal and trim, allowing me to match the overall farm building color scheme. 

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