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Thread: Warm Garden Water. Simple Solar water heater

  1. #1
    Member mudbuddy's Avatar
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    Default Warm Garden Water. Simple Solar water heater

    I water my garden with well water & it is pretty cold even thru the summer.
    I made this stand & 2 - 55 gallon drums. Elevated enough for gravity flow & tipped forward a few degrees so they drain almost totally empty for the winter.
    I cut a small hole in the top rear high spot for filling & an air vent.
    The black absorbs heat during the day. Plumbed to hoses & valves to various spots in the garden. Sure help to water plants with 60 to 80 °f water instead of "shocking them" with cold well water. I can also mix fertilizer if needed & water the whole garden with the 110 gallons of warm water. I also have a hose into the GH for watering there too.
    Every now & then I spray paint the blue one with flat black paint.
    Tied them down after a winter wind blew them off & broke all the plumbing.
    Learned to empty them & leave all valves open & drained thru the winter too.
    I used good thread sealant for the fittings , a slow leak can empty them in a few days.
    I fill them with the same hose that goes to the GH (back flow) & learned to put a piece of yarn on the fill valve that goes on my finger when I open it. (a few hours of overflow are messy )
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    Member power drifter's Avatar
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    years ago when living in the woods without running water I did something like this but had 6 of them all hooked together. Gutter from the roof filled them fast. I even built a closer around them with glass and about 2 days after they where filled the water was so warm you could take a bath. For sure plants like the water warmed up.

  3. #3
    Member garnede's Avatar
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    Since tomatoes need/love warm soil I bet they love this.
    It ain't about the # of pounds of meat we bring back, nor about how much we spent to go do it. Its about seeing what no one else sees.

    http://wouldieatitagainfoodblog.blogspot.com/

  4. #4

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    I have a system about like that for my garden. It consist of 4 old water heaters with all of the insulation striped off and painted black. They are all plumbed into each other. That way I can keep water presure on it . The way they are plumbed with cold in and hot side out and the same into the next . Then I can let it set and it warmes up quite well. With the way it is set up when I run the water I get the warmest water first. The water heaters were all free so my cost in the project is the paint and the fittings. Then comes fall it is simple to open the drains and drain out the system and it is set for winter. Also have a water pressure type tank in the green house painted black. again there is plenty of warm water for the plants.

  5. #5
    Member mudbuddy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Bend View Post
    I have a system about like that for my garden. It consist of 4 old water heaters with all of the insulation striped off and painted black. They are all plumbed into each other. That way I can keep water presure on it . The way they are plumbed with cold in and hot side out and the same into the next . Then I can let it set and it warmes up quite well. With the way it is set up when I run the water I get the warmest water first. The water heaters were all free so my cost in the project is the paint and the fittings. Then comes fall it is simple to open the drains and drain out the system and it is set for winter. Also have a water pressure type tank in the green house painted black. again there is plenty of warm water for the plants.
    That's a good idea. I may see if I can find some old tanks. It would be nice to have pressure when watering or using a soaker hose.

  6. #6
    Member Alaska Grandma's Avatar
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    I always try to warm the garden water too and I think that makes for some happy plants.
    Only difference is that I prefer to use plastic 55 gallon drums rather than metal. I have found that metal can rust with use and age. I bought some used black olive and pickled pepper drums, they had to be washed and the pepper one smelled a tad like peppers for a while, but they sure are nice, light and handy.

    Grandma Lori
    If God had intended us to follow recipes,
    He wouldn't have given us grandmothers. ~Linda Henley

  7. #7
    Member mudbuddy's Avatar
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    Thought I'd mention this for some of the new gardener.

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    I started using a barrel to give my gardens warmer water than my well two years ago, great suggestion mudbuddy it really works well.

  9. #9
    Supporting Member Old John's Avatar
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    The temp of the water coming out of my well is in the low 40's. about 10 to 12 hrs of sunshine on my 2 Blue Barrels raises the water temp to 60, Even on cloudy days the temp will come up some due to solar heating.. I copied my system off of Mudbuddy, with some modifications…

  10. #10
    Member mudbuddy's Avatar
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    Some how all my garden barrel plumbing split open.
    Must have not drained the pipe for winter ?

    Replaced it all today & filled the drums
    Suns out, the water is warming up


    DSCF6550.jpg

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