Protect your solar pump against mud

The clever placement of a solar pump can make water holes for livestock and game much more efficient. Water provision for these animals can be one of the biggest headaches for any livestock or game farmer.

Mr. Hans Nel farms Bonsmaras and also owns a game farm. He is a retired pension fund manager. One of the things he’s struggled with in his farming business is solar pumps that break as a result of mud or sand damage.

Mr. Hans Nel
Mr. Hans Nel

Solar pumps work a lot like a submersible pump, with the pumping unit attached to the bottom of the pipe in the borehole. On cloudy days, a submersible pump, which makes use of a generator, is used in the same source as the solar pump.

Problems arise when the solar pump’s pumping unit is pressed against the wall of the borehole by the submersible pump, causing it to suck up sand and mud. Hans’s solution is to place the solar pump inside the submersible pump’s pipe, instead of next to it. A piece of galvanised iron with a diameter of 100 mm is joined in the 50 mm pipe, to make space, and the solar pump, with its 25 mm pipe and its own cable, is placed inside the submersible pump’s pipe. (Photo 1). Above ground, the pipes and cables are separated.

The submersible pump’s cable is, as usual, led down the side of the 50 mm pipe, while the solar pump’s cable is attached to it’s 25 mm pipe with cable ties and runs inside the 50 mm pipe (Photo 2). Each time the submersible pump is used, the solar pump gets a thorough rinsing as the water from the submersible pump is pushed through the solar pump. This ensures that the solar pump lasts much longer.

Photo2. The solar pump's cable is attached to it with cable ties.
Photo2. The solar pump’s cable is attached to it with cable ties.

Contact: Mr Hans Nel, e-mail: hans.nel@absamail.co.za

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