Pool filter for water filtration??

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Good morning all. This is gonna sound like it's outta left field, but... I've been giving the idea of water catchment/storage some thought lately, as I mentally plan my future homestead. I've seen the posts about filtering thru screen, gravel and sand and it got me to thinkin'. Could a sand filled pool filter work? I'm thinking along the lines of a catchment system, along with a portable tank mounted on a trailer or in a pick-up truck, to fetch water from the open springs that are so abundant and accessable around here.

So, here's the plan. One large storage tank,750 gallons or so, buried near the house. This would be to keep it cooler in the summer (evaporation) as well as keeping out sunlight and making the yard less "cluttered". This tank would be filled by either the rainwater, or a trip to the spring with the portable set-up. Water could be pumped from the main tank, thru the pool filter into a smaller "holding" tank in the basement, where it could be used on demand. A toilet style plunger set-up in the holding tank would would activate the pump/filter system and a similar set-up could be rigged up in the main tank to light up a "low water level" light on a control panel in the house.

Ok, there's my idea. Now, tell me why it won't work. Any and all input would be appreciated. Thanks. John

-- John D in Pa (mrmopar@penn.com), March 01, 2001


it can,, the Army uses a driveable filter system, thats basiclly a giant pool filter / chorinator on wheels. Id worry about useing containinated sand as the filter element. Filter sand in pool stores or not to be used for potable water. Not sure if playsand would work in a pool filter. Do you want to use the filter as a pump also or just the filter portion ?

-- Stan (sopal@net-port.com), March 01, 2001.

Hi Stan, thanks for the reply. I haven't thought it thru quite that far yet. Will have to look at flow rates, as well as how much electric they consume. If they use alot more than a regular pump, I'll re-configure the system to gravity flow thru a homemade filter. But then you have more cycling, due to the lower filtering rate of gravity feed and the smaller capacity of the filter itself. Ahhh, decisions, decisions. :) Thanks again Stan. John

-- John D in Pa (mrmopar@penn.com), March 01, 2001.

Filtering water through screens and sand will remove most if not all of the solids in the water but will have little or not effect on most bacteria or virus that might be in it. To have safe water it would have to come from deep underground and be tested or treat water you catch from the roof or some other method with chemicals. Even water that is just stored in conatiners will grow bacteira you don't want to drink or use in your food prep. We get our water from a spring and we own all the land that drains into it but we still get it tested now and then and as for storing water in a container for when the power is off we add a small amount of bleach and after about two weeks we pour out the container and replace the water and the bleach. City water already contains enough chemicals that the water can be stored for a much longer period of time.

-- David (bluewaterfarm@mindspring.com), March 01, 2001.

I'll do my best to explain what we did here. When we built we knew we would have to do a cistern system so we put metal roofs on the house and garage, put rain gutters with gutter guards on. Where the down spout meets the ground we rented a ditch witch and ran the gutter into pipe which flows through this via gravity to a cistern we built. The only mistake we made was it isn't quite big enough. We get lots of rain here, but do go long periods without. We had a slab poured (main cost) and built the cistern out of cement block. We tarred the block on the outside, wrapped it with visqueen, painted the inside with several coats of cistern paint. We put an overflow pipe in that overflows to the outside once the cistern is full. When the water flows into the cistern it first hits a trough that is lined with diaper flannel. It catches any particulates. The flannel is washable and removable and has worked great. We bought a pump which takes little electricity from a solar catalogue. It is pumped to the house where it goes through a fairly inexpensive water filter. The water we use for drinking is at the kitchen sink and there it goes through a good filter which filters 99.9 of everything out, including the chlorine which we do add to the cistern. The water from the drinking faucet came back totally pure. Since it is rain water it is incredibly soft. We use little detergent and soaps. It has worked great. Our cistern holds 3500 gal. I do wash at home, but try to plan it around rain. We haven't run out of water in the year and a hlaf we have had it up and running. Have had no problems what so ever with it. We do wish our cistern was twice as big. But we can add a chamber in front of the one that is there and could with that include a sand filter and it would act as a settling tank. We also added a valve before the water hits the cistern so that if the cistern is full we can open up another valve and shoot divert the rainwater before it gets to the cistern. THis is used also to let the first rain wash off the roofs without going into the cistern. Hope I have explained this fairly intelligently. I am a plumber's daughter, but obviously no plumber! Good luck.Jean

-- Jean in Ky. (dandrea@duo-county.com), March 01, 2001.

Where do you get cistern paint? could this be used to fix a leaky cement pond (shades of Beverly Hillbillies!) that was built unlined due to bad advice? How much is it?

-- Soni (thomkilroy@hotmail.com), March 01, 2001.

Soni: I use some stuff called U.G.L. waterproofing paint. Costs $18.00 or so per gallon. Repair the cracks and apply 2 coats. Really works well....Kirk

-- Kirk Davis (kirkay@yahoo.com), March 02, 2001.

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