Tag: Tips&Tricks (Page 2 of 2)

DIY: How to prime a utility water pump

Hydrostar Pump from Harbor Freight

For anyone that hauls recycled water, whether it be in a water bladder, 275 gallon tote or a 50 gallon barrel, a pump is a great tool to use to unload water fast. In this post I’ll show you how to prime a pump.

It is very easy to prime a pump, especially when the hose on the suction side of the pump is already full of water. I have removed the vent plug on my Hydrostar Portable Utility Pump and installed a small ball valve to act as an air relief.

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DIY: Flush the crud from your hot water heater

I am a homeowner with a hot water heater. I also living in a water service area with dissolved solids in the water supply. Combine the two in a hot water vessel and something happens. The dissolved solids drop out of suspension and form a coating on the bottom of the heater. Unfortunately, this also reduces the efficiency of the heat transfer from burning natural gas into heating water for showers or laundry.

But did you know, using the tools you probably already have at home, you can flush this crud out of your hot water heater, water the plants in your yard and increase efficiency and the life span of your hot water heater? I’m going to show you how.
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Capturing Rainwater for Landscape Plantings

Hydrologic Cycle (image: Beaver River Watershed)

Hydrologic Cycle

Percolation. This may be new rainwater term to most homeowners, but it is a term and activity that we need to embrace. Simply put, it refers to keeping rainwater on the land and letting it flow into the ground, ultimately replenishing ground water.

An inch of rain falling on about 1600 square feet of rooftop will produce about 1,000 gallons of run-off. Capturing this water on the property at the start and end of the rainy season will lessen irrigation needs and help plants cope with drought conditions.

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Clear Leaves from Storm Drains

Leaves blocking drain after rain.

As homeowners, we are responsible for the trees on our property. That means when trees decide to lose their leaves, we are responsible for where they go. If you’re anything like my neighbors – your mind says “if the leaves are in the street, it’s not my problem.”

Except, they are your problem. Too many leaves blocking a storm drain can cause flooding in heavy El Nino rains. Flooding leads to impassable streets, safety hazards and possibly property damage.

You have the power and ability to help keep your community safe during winter storms. If you feel up to the task, jump in and help out.

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DIY: How to minimize IBC tote water slosh

In the last post, the safety hazards associated with driving with a half full IBC Tote were looked at. A full tote, weighs 2600 pounds and has very little to no sloshing, except when taking corners, the mass of the water will work to pull your vehicle over. This was experienced by a passenger in an F350 carrying 275 gallons of water.

When a tote is half full, there is about 1250 pounds of water that moves, so when you turn left, that water moves with considerable momentum to the right. If physics calculations were performed we could figure out how much force is being applied to a vehicle at any given speed if we knew the mass.

Lets call this mass of water moving in a tank as slosh. How can you minimize slosh in an IBC tote?

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“Freak” rainstorm refills dry rain barrels

Hurricane Dolores – the same one whose moisture just ravaged I-10 near the California/Arizona border spawned some isolated storms in SF Bay Area. Those storms arrived around 1AM on Sunday morning as signified by a tweet from @NWSBayArea.

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Tips & Tricks to Unload Recycled Water More Efficiently



There has been immense activity surrounding hauling recycled water. The lines at recycled water fill stations are long (with more hose bibs/fill stations coming online often), everywhere you look in the are people are driving around with 300 gallon totes in their trucks and/or trailers and demand for pumps at Harbor Freight is high.

So why not take this as a chance to update you on the changes I’ve made with my recycled water hauling setup and share some of the Tips & Tricks I have learned.

11,500 gallons Recycled Water Hauled

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