Author Topic: Can I use the hydrant on my residential well for my garden's drip irrigation?  (Read 1202 times)

JEG in Raleigh

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Cary, you helped me a lot last year with my well and I installed a cycle stop valve and cycle sensor and they both have been working great.  We are finally doing some landscaping around our house and I want to put in a small vegetable garden.  I want to use drip irrigation for the landscaping and vegetable garden.  At most, I will have 200' of irrigation lines with emitters, and from what I have read online, each 100' consumes only 0.5 gpm.  This is a homeowner system and I just want to run it off a hose bib, as I have done in a previous house that we had.  Rather than running a supply line to a hose bib on the side of the house, I want to use the hose bib (hydrant) that is mounted to the tee on the top of the well seal. I'm in a warm climate and don't have a pitless adapter and there is a tee on top of the well seal that supplies the house and the hydrant (sorry, can't figure out how to get a photo attached to my post). 

When I turn on the hydrant on the well, there is no switch of any kind connected to the flow coming out of the hydrant to turn on the well pump, and water comes out of the hydrant weakly… 1 gpm….so I’m guessing that water is flowing backwards, out of the pressure tank, through the bypass of the CSV and back down towards the well, where it comes out the hydrant… that correct?  And then, when the pressure tank drains enough, the pressure switch at the pressure tank turns on the well pump, and water starts gushing out of the hydrant.

But, when I’m using my proposed drip irrigation system, it will only consume about 1 gpm. 

QUESTION: So when the well pump is not running and the drip irrigation is being fed by the pressure tank only, is that going to be enough pressure to push water through the restrictions of the flow emitters of the drip irrigation system?

QUESTION:  When the pressure tank finally drains and the pressure switch turns on the well pump, will the well pump gradually fill the pressure tank again, while the 1 gpm flow is going to the irrigation system? 

QUESTION:  Is the CSV functioning when only the well hydrant is being used in this manner?

QUESTION:  Would I be hurting my well pump with this system?

Cary Austin

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Drip systems and small flow irrigation are exactly the kind of thing a CSV is made to do and protect your pump in the process.  But the CSV must be installed prior to the hydrant or tee the water is being used from to function properly.