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Private water delivery vs. well


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Claudia's Forum Posts: 67

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By Claudia in Glendale, AZ on 10/19/2005


We are looking to purchase land on a hill, and we know a well will run up to $20,000.

How do private water-delivery systems work?

I can't find info on the Web. When I type private water system it gives me info on wells, but I think a private water delivery will be more cost-effective in the meantime.


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By Dustin in Enoch, UT on 10/25/2005


You might also consider putting in a rainwater catchment system for your roof if you have a non-shingle roof (shingles may contaminate the water) and divert it to an underground large storage tank (which you will need anyway if you have water delivered), whereby you can pump it through a purification system and use it for drinking water. This may not take care of all your needs, but it might take care of as much as half of them, as long as are you use conservation techniques and install water miserly appliances and fixtures.

Google "rainwater catchment"



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By Kenneth in Lees Summit, MO on 10/25/2005


Is this a cabin, or more of a primary living arrangement? I would think that living without a consistent water supply might get very difficult, although would be quite acceptable for shorter terms (cabin, boat, camper).

If I were looking at how to do this properly, I would look at islands that have very limited fresh water supply and see what they do for fresh water. One solution to them that is easy to eliminate is reverse osmosis of salt water. However the rainwater catchment systems, greywater systems, etc. might work. Everything you do should focus on reduction of water usage - two that come to mind very quickly are using your dehumidifier to generate drinking water and composting toilets.

This is certainly not a mainstream-type question, I would be interested to hear some innovative solutions.


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By Claudia in Glendale, AZ on 10/25/2005


Thanks, but in Prescott, AZ, I've seen big tanks of water and private companies come to fill them regularly - this is the info I am looking for.  
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By Dustin in Enoch, UT on 10/25/2005


I Googled "bulk water delivery Glendale AZ" and came up with this. I imagine you could look under water services in your Yellow Pages too. I bet it's spendy. oasish2o.com

As you will already be purchasing a large storage tank and distribution system (and I would suggest a multi-system system purification system with UV, 50 micron, and one-micron filters, perhaps also a carbon block), why not pipe your water runoff to that same tank (make sure you have a "roof washer"). To learn more, read the "Texas Guide to Rainwater Harvesting"
twdb.state.tx.us/assistance/conservation

I will have a well, and I plan on using this for my house and garage, if only for irrigation, since I will also have a big water tank and have to purify my water anyway. Since water delivery will be expensive, this could significantly save you some money in the long run.

I know Scottsdale has a lot of incentives for this, I don't know if Glendale does.

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By Michael in Cave Creek, AZ on 10/28/2005


Hauled water is not all that uncommon in Arizona. There are some communities where wells come up dry or are too expensive due to depth, and the municipal water systems are too far away.

The water systems normally consist of a big above-ground storage tank or cistern (about 2,500 gallons). This tank is connected to a pressure tank and a pump and piped to your house. There are certain setback requirements between the water tank and the septic system. 

I think companies that haul water charge about $60 per load. This could be drastically different depending on your exact location. Most of the water trucks will have phone numbers on them. Give the local water-hauling company a call and they can tell you about delivery fees and often they will also sell or rent you a water tank. The potable water delivery companies are usually licensed to haul potable water.

There are also a lot of do-it-yourself water haulers in certain parts of Arizona. In parts of Pinal County, you can see people with all kinds of home-built water-hauling trailers and pickups. Hauling water on a trailer or in a pickup truck bed tank limits you to about 300 to 500 gallons per load.

Roof catchment systems and local filtration are probably not worthwhile in Arizona, since it doesn't rain enough to make that a reliable source of water.


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By John in Erie, CO on 10/28/2005


Be sure to check your local/state codes. Capturing water from your roof and doing anything other than letting it go on it's way to the natural "general drainage" here in Colorado is technically illegal. It's not like there are "impoundment police" that come around and inspect where your gutters drain to, but if you have plans showing a water catchment system, it might get static if your jurisdiction is governed by a state engineer.

Here, all impoundments (stopping water, by dam, tank, etc.), wells, etc. all fall under the state engineer. By capturing water on my roof and using it for watering my garden, technically I'm depriving some senior or junior water-right holder in that "basin" of some of their water... you certainly wouldn't find a development here reprocessing their neighborhood gutters/storm drains for water to water the golf course; that would violate the whole "flow" and mess up someone's water rights...

It's a big mess, water taps outside of an urban area in an area that has municipal water are over $30K now, just for the water-supply tap. If I had spent $30K on water in 1970, I could sell those water rights for over three million right now...

Anyway, my only real point here is to just advise that you walk lightly/quietly unless you know your area's rules. (If they are encouraged, great!)... water law is weird, and  I suspect Colorado, being a state with a lot of headwaters, gets more scrutiny than states farther down the line. My gutters happen to drain to a very flat pasture, where, presumably, the water could continue to flow down to the proper water-rights holders... my pasture just happens to absorb a lot of it on the way. :)

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