How To Hand Dig Your Own Shallow Well on the Cheap – Off Grid Living

How To Hand Dig Your Own Shallow Well on the Cheap – Off Grid Living

Stick with me as we build our own hand
dug well. To give credit to where credit is due Most of this information I got from this
book. I’ll link that in the description below to the Amazon book.
Also you can buy all the supplies I talk about right here on amazon and i’ll put
those links in as well to now I have to apologize because most of this footage
is from 2012 and I shot it with my cell phone I really wasn’t planning on making
a story out of it. I just found it so I cleaned it up the best I could and
decide to put it up as a story, so enjoy. Hi, This is Tarrin Lupo and welcome to my video
about handing well. We’re going to talk for a second just about why do we want
to hand in a well, it’s kind of very old school. That’s the point I want to be
able to know that I can dig a well if I have no electricity no water around just
kind of a combination of the old way to do it and the new way. I’m going to show
you I think the cheapest and easiest way to do it and we’re gonna start first by
actually dowsing. Dowsing is a lot of superstition but the whole time I swear
by it. You’re supposed to be able to get a
let’s see I think it’s a witch hazel or a willow and I don’t have either of
those on my property, all I have is pine. I’m probably use a pendulum and that’ll
be fun. I don’t know if it’ll work or not but
honestly how often do you get to use a dowsing rod or a pendulum and have that
be legit in life. Ok thanks! Alright so this is we’re going
to use the pendulum style and you have to ask the pendulum first to show me yes,
and yes is a circle. Now show me no, no is back and forth motion. So you just walk around say, “is this is a good place to dig?” Is there water? Is there water? It is staying still. Is this a good place to dig? It’s saying saying no. What about here, is a good place to take the water? No. I am going to put it around there. Is this is a good place to dig for water? No. It doesn’t like any of these places. Is this a good place to dig for water? Yes it likes here! Ok so this is where
we’ll dig. This is pretty convenient. There’s some general rules, if you don’t
want to use this old stuff. Obviously there’s a you want to dig into valleys
not hills. You want to go to where water runs to. Another simple kind of
common-sense way is to look wherever there’s a puddle. Usually when your lane, when your land
drains, there’s going to be a big puddle of water. That’s a good place to dig
because the waters obviously going into the ground there. Right, so we’re going to
be using and hand auger it’s basically a shovel that spins in a circle and we
keep attaching pipes to this until we get down past the water level. I just did
a little starter hole to test the auger works good. These are about 50 bucks on amazon. First
thing you want to do though is take a bucket and then cut the cut the bottom
off. We’re going to do that and you’re
gonna make a collar so it fits around the hole and dirt doesn’t keep falling
back in it as you dig. We are do that now. Alright, so we are already through the
topsoil just a couple feet I think we’re about 4 feet down and yeah
that’s about three to four feet, and look at how it’s changing color. it went from dirt to clay now it did
rain recently a lot so I’m not trusting this. We’re gonna go real deep but you’re
gonna go through the top soil layer and then the clay layer where there’s gravel
and clay it’ll be all wet. That’s your actual layer of the well
where you get the water, once you get through that layer you go a couple more
feet down and you’re not in the water anymore you just into, into harder dirt, so
that’s what we’re looking for. We will bring it back i’m going to add some more polls
to this one screw and add some polls. Alright ,so the way this thing comes
apart is the top shovel comes off. We’ve added a 2-foot pole and that’s
what i’m using a book that recommends two feet pole to start with and you go up
to 4 feet. So the dirt comes out looking something like this. The easy way to do is
set up a board to knock it on. I am going to pick this thing up, knock it on the board and
it comes right out. alright so we’re about 20 feet now we’re
gonna put on our last pieces, up to 24 feet. You can see how long the shaft is here.
Usually what I do is to get it loose actually use a pole for leverage and
then just twist and we’ll break the pipe in the middle will add another. Once your
auger starts to get really long. It is really tough to control, and it takes a
lot of muscles. Sometimes this is definitely a two-man job near the end
back when I built this in 2012 had to buy each piece so a lot of this which is
PVC tubing I got at the hardware store, but these days you can actually buy a
kit right on amazon that I think includes most of what you need. I will
link it in the description. So let’s pick it up from there. By the way my dad and my stepmom showed up and help me assemble this so you’ll see them and hear them in this part of
the video to. Alright so, the shaft has been dug here’s the pipe. I had a couple a couple
pieces to get it to go but pipes about 24-25 feet. I think my shafts around a little
over 20. What you want to do is cap the end there’s the cap and then you want to
put gills in it. These gills will alternate every couple feet, you will see them going up. You’ll see the gills but then you’ll notice that i also do it on the
other side and in between. So you have a gill about every foot. I just used a circular
saw using this circular saw and what you basically do just put it down and give
it a go. Just like that and it leaves a gill. So these allow the water to flow in but
not so much the rocks and soil. The reason i didn’t use just the septic
system, you know how like you can get one for a leach field or something with
holes in it holes are too big, and it’ll let in a lot of the rocks. Which
eventually will clog your well. So we’re going to use slits instead or I call them gills.
Here’s the well shaft, you can’t really see very well, but we’re now pass it’s about 21 feet if you look how long
this auger is, and you can see when you finally stop this clay is all red
Georgia clay here that’s grit and kind of gravely clay. That’s what we’ve been
in for about 17 feet and you’ll notice it changed to this white stuff. You
can tell that and it feels different. We’re skidding around on some other
kind of a kind of dirt. That’s where we’re going to stop. The shaft
is now filled with the casing. I didn’t get this on film because it took
all hands to keep this thing straight and so the couplings didn’t break apart.
When you left them straight up you’ll see there’s that’s the 20 mark where the
coupling is so. We’re a little over about 20 feet once it’s finally in, give it a good push. Now you have to level it and you’re gonna backfill it with pea gravel. All
these bags here. To back fill it up to the waterline with pea gravel so you
measure the waterline first before you start. Then we’re going to have to
fill it with its level. If you don’t have a level there is a cellphone app, .
believe it or not. Put your iphone on against it and there is an app that acts
as a level. Technology how about that? Alright so we’re going to get pea
graveling. This next part is going to show you how to put together the actual
pumping mechanism. I bought this part on amazon as a kit and this
kind of shows you how to assemble it and i’ll link that in the description below. ok so we started assembling the first
thing we did is put on the foot pump to the pipe. these are actually two pipes together
the cylinder is inside. So this is a system where there’s a pump inside it. There will be two pipes together. I
bought this kit on amazon so you can find it there. What you have to do to screw all the
inside pipes together in peace the outside pipes afterward it goes down
about 20 feet of this will be doing this over and over. Since you’re working with
the water here also be sure to teflon tape pieces and
put together. So here’s the final well casing is
inserted. I put buckets around it cut the ends off and cascade them up. The reason
I did this obviously for concrete around it let it dry for a good week i’m gonna
leave the buckets on for a while and later I’ll cut him off but uh just to be
sure they’re doesn’t hurt anything to leave them on. Here’s the casing I stuck that way
out and i’m going to cut it off now. about six inches above this piece here. The well the actual cylinder is ready remember this was two pipes and a pipe
20 feet long. I decided to assemble it outside and
then just stick it in. There is a top of the wellhead. You can tie a string to the
foot valve if you want just in case you drop it in this is not the last piece is
actually does not have any sort of assembly on it i’ll show you that later
we’re going to do some pieces to it. One other this about the casing. I did it this
style because I don’t wanna break my back when I pump. This will raise it
a way above the ground so i can stand up and pump instead of leaning over. Could
you see this that’s just a bowl to keep the water out.
Yeah alright so, now it’s cut just cut it level i used a 4×4 justto
raise it up. I”m going to take the cheap method and just lower this thing
in and go catch on the the wellhead. You want me to hold the camera now While you guys lower it in? we could try to do that right there. Ok so it’s gonna catch on that as we
lower it in. So now it’s on so you can edit it down. We gotta stand this thing up first this is the hard part. Actually yeah yeah it is going in gentle. Now if you don’t tie this off you can lose it. if you’re well seals not big enough. Did he tie it off? I’m good. He didn’t because he put his
altogether yeah that one x now we just fit in there
you’ll notice that we have some extra holes I’ve got to get some caps to screw in.
You are gonna just roll this down into the rubber get in there. ok so that’s black seal goes all the way
down? It will once a screw-down and push on it. Alright so, We pulled back up the well
because I forgot to do something. So it’s a good thing I didn’t seal down the
pumping and unscrew and re-screw it. what we’re doing is putting weep holes,
and you want to put about quarter inch holes on all four sides to let the water
drain so it doesn’t freeze and break the pipe it will leach out down to the
bottom of the well. So there we going to put these in you have to be extremely
careful not to pierce the inside cylinder so we’re only going just a
little nib. It has to be 18 inches below 18 yeah below the frost line. Now okay
before we had just rest of the casing on the double check, I pulled it out and
then put the weeping holes in now you’ll see it’s actually sealed you have to
unscrew all these then you can push it into the casing and now you re-tighten
it down. Which suctions it. You make sure you have someone holding this if
you lose it you’re screwed. Hopefully you have a well hopefully you
have a string on it to stop it from falling in. You can retrieve it if it falls thanks. This is the kit I bought the Handy well
pump ok it’s basically designed to be PVC
completely so nothing will ever rust and it’s it’s got a pumping mechanism inside
an extra cylinder that pulls water. I know normally the picture pumps are
real pretty but they do rust after well this is a kind of a forever pump pretty
much. It’s easy to repair if you break something with PVC here’s our last
step. Everything’s tightened down. I put this
collar on on the extension pipe here and then right here I glued this end. You do not want to glue this collar on
you want to take it off later that’s a no-no but you do glue this part on which
is where the handle attached. We are going to put the handle on pump a in second see if we get
water. The handles assembled, it has these
foam grips which is kind of nice, and also comes with a cap that if you want
to unscrew this it will come off and you can cap it for the winter or whatever
you want to do. Keep the handle so nobody screws with it. that’s kind of nice it also is threaded
on the well and so you could tie a garden hose to it if you want. I lowered it because when i
started mess with the pump it was way too high to push up. I dropped way down hopefully I calculated the weep lines
good too. Weep holes should still have plenty of room. We’re going to pump and see
if it works. Now you have to prime it for awhile. Wow water with the second pump! It’s not bad. Good pressure for a hand pump. ok so now you wanna its kind of leaking well it’s spaying to the side is not leaking. so
we need to get this closer and probably cut the collar down. It’s not leaking
but you want to let it pour out so that it sprays into your bucket. That’s great
Well I can screw the thing onto. yeah there you go how deep was your dig? 20 feet? That’s not bad If I go all the way up I can really get a good push. here’s my pump it’s done look look look
I have water oh my gosh!!! It works! It Works! With the hand dug well you’re
gonna notice the first couple days is going to be very murky and muddy. It
takes a while to clean out the well and the more you use it the better it gets
it creates channel so you’ll see this is like a brown water coming out. It is kind of muddy. That will stop
eventually the more you use it. The first couple times though you’re just gonna
get nothing but mud water. Don’t forget if you haven’t subscribed
yet please subscribe to my channel also give this a thumbs up, a like, share or if you have something to
add remember to comment below thanks. also don’t forget to stop by Tarrin Lupo
dot-com. I have up videos that you can’t see anywhere else currently I have one on carnivorous
plants and also how to make your own mead. All you have to do is go over and
sign up at Tarrin Lupo dot-com and all that’s free

100 thoughts on “How To Hand Dig Your Own Shallow Well on the Cheap – Off Grid Living

  1. great video I'll attempt it but I live in alaska were we have frozen tundra and really rocky soil underneath ……
    great video you saved many people thousands and thousands of

  2. Hello, loved the video! I am located in New Hampshire though and am wondering how this would handle a very cold winter? I would put a roof over it to keep snow off, it would however still get down to below 0 degrees F over night. Is that okay because all the water is in the bottom below the frost line when you are not pumping? or does any stay in the pump?

  3. Bruce here from Handy Well Pump. Thanks for using our pump. We don't make that one anymore and have moved over to stainless steel pumps. But marketing pumps to folks like you gave us a good start in business. Visit us at I think you will be amazed at how far we have come since we built that first model back in 2012. Best Regards
    Bruce Broderick Owner Handy Well Pump

  4. I believe if you have a reasonably strong air compressor you could possibly pump the well after drilling to clear water quicker.

  5. Haha Remember me? Sorry if I bugged you on your recent live show! I'm just going to binge watch all your vids till I am able to calm down lol

  6. Would have been funny if the pendulum had showed you the best place to dig and then it turned out there was the city's water pipeline and you burst it with your spade, ha ha ha ha

  7. Why is it everyone hand digging their own well on Youtube is not putting in a regular well pump. That is what I want to see.
    I searched for "dig your own well". Not "hand pump water like a chump". Put that in your title so I can not click accordingly.
    I don't plan to walk all the way to the bottom end of my property to hand pump some water. How deep does a normal well pump need to be submerged to handle normal use? NORMAL EVERYDAY LIFE. It's not the Apocalypse! Damn it.

  8. Now you can pump all kinds of surface carcenogens and ground run off,  I truly hope you checked to see if your well is not on top of an old trash dump that has been covered over. lolI recomend , if you want clean un contaminated water, hire a professional well driller and pay for a deep well (a well that is sealed off to the surface water. otherwise you may be dieing a lot sooner than expected.

  9. The link to the kit on amazon is $500 and not that it does NOT include the steel pipe extentions, They are $15 each for 4 foot at your hardware store, But here is how I did mine, Much cheaper and easier and no pumping needed. I use the same auger with 20 feet of extentions ($110), Then I bought the 4 ft pvc, capperd the bottom, made the gills, and added the pea gravel., Here is the difference: I use a 12 volt dc bilge pump that has an 1 1/2" outlet. Twenty-ficve feet of clear plastic tubing ($20). It fits in the 4" PVC. I use a 100 watt solar panel($100). No pump needed. It works great in the daytime but obviously not at night. So if you want 24/7 add a 12 volt battery and a controller. If you want a more powerful pump (110 AC) add an inverter. Mine well cost under $300 including the solar panel (WindyNation,com) 12 volt dc bilge pumps on ebay($13) (I have been using them for my koi pond and my solar powered hot tub for four years. But thanks for confirming much of what I have done, Paint the PVC exposed to the sun.

  10. Is it true that the kit costs 450 dollars an is "on the cheap?" Doesnt sound that cheap tbh. How did you dig a well in the old days?

  11. Wow…thank you bud…for sure I will try this when I can come up with the $ and my project gets to this point …thank you for explaining things that easily and clear……..I subbed too bro…

  12. dousing bullshit. Look at his hand, he is making it move. Ive seen people do this before, they are so obvious. THey are fools selling garbage for the base mind that doesn't know any better.

  13. Hi I'm just here to learn…i was wondering…once your well is up and running ….is the water always clean and drinkable …and how does it get filtered?

  14. Move on don't waste your time. Could be a simple very instructive video instead it is a cluster with no instruction what so ever. A simple step by step but no.

  15. You should have wrap geofabrics around the gills of the pipes so the water wouldn't be so brown/muddle.

    And if you want to make your life easier. replace the hand pump with a solar water pump and connect it to a water tower. I think a 20 ft high tower frame with a couple of hundreds gallons water tank on top should hold enough water for your daily use. 20 ft high should give you 8 PSI water pressure, assuming the average water level use is 6 ft. 8 PSI is adequate for most use. But if you want more water pressure, then build a 30 ft tower instead. And what ever your water pressure need, just build the tower to require height, taken into consideration that there is 1 psi for every 2 ft height.

    Note: I would give you a link to some of the available geotextile fabric on Home Depot & Amazon, but it seems that Youtube will censor my post if I do that.

  16. Pretty awesome video. But where I live in New England you can't place the shovel on the ground, let alone into the dirt without hitting a rock. It's mostly rocks here, I HATE digging holes because of it. Wish I had clay like that instead. My well is also 310' deep…soooo. lol.

  17. Good deal it's a lot cheaper than a 6000 to $12,000 pump that the professionals make and you can always add a electric power pump to that and then pipe it into your house pipes for all of your water needs

  18. An 8 gauge wire (copper) about two feet long, bent half way into a piece that sort of resembles an upside down L, will work. It's an electric conductor, but also works with magnetics to follow or point to any path that conducts electricity. Such as water, metals, electric and magnetic current….that's how you get the movement. 😊👍

  19. How to do it cheap. How about: 'How to do it right?' And how about: 'Why it is so important that wells be drilled and established properly?' And how about: 'Why improperly drilled, established, or abandoned wells create problems that costs millions of dollars to fix?' (That the taxpayer is going to have to pay for.)

  20. AAAArgh, it's "The Fly". Hang on, no, it's just a badly chosen pair of sunglasses. You're not driving a Humvee….

  21. You can tap a well anywhere, most everywhere has some water level beneath the ground. Where you lost me was when you began using something that has been UTTERLY PROVEN BEYOND DOUBT to be complete bullshit. In the 70's in drought riddled Australia where I live these dowsers were exploiting farmers so severely that it drew the attention of James Randi, the guy who's been offering $1,000,000 for many decades for ANY proof of anything supernatural. He set up a contest, inviting all the countries famous dowsers, and ran water through one of ten channels. They generally did worse than chance. The problem is – because you can get water just about anywhere above bedrock (or even artificial bedrock) people still believe these liars.

  22. Exactly what dirt were you trying to prevent falling back into the hole? As far as I can tell, all the bucket did was make you lift the auger higher to get it clear of the hole. I have no doubt keeping that handle on the pole caused you more work than if you had removed it each time before extracting the auger.

  23. Sorry, I'm an idiot, when digging you never hit or showed you hit water, just different color dirt. So how the hell did you end up pumping water?

  24. I'm sorry, but you lost me at 8:25 and didn't want to watch anymore. I was thoroughly confused with a "pump" you bought on Amazon. Ugh daFRIG !!

  25. Just before the pendulum said yes?
    I could swear I heard your wife in the background asking if you had seen her necklace.

  26. Take a walk in the woods. Note the wet spots at the base of a hill. Follow most strea.s to the head and there you will find a spring. Very little digging needed to pipe the water where ever. A water ram and you all set. Now wasn't that so mush easier.

  27. From what I've heard, you can use metal rods for dousing as well. Bend them into a L shape and to insure they rotate freely out the ends inside plastic straws

  28. Yes, this is very easy, I have drilled 2 of my own wells. The first one I did at my old house, I hit water at 17 feet, bought a screen and 20 ft of galvanized pipe and a shallow well pump, I used it for my lawn. When I moved, I did the same thing, hit water around 17 feet, but this time I used 2"galvanized pipe (with screen 22 feet deep, all the screen has to be below the water, or you will suck air), with a shallow well pump. But again it is only for my lawn, I cannot drink the water, because this is only at the first aquifer. If I ever do it again, I wold do a 4" well with the pump at the bottom.

    ps, you really get funny looks from your neighbors putting the digger in and out , but only took about 3 hours to dig!

  29. Using an 8 foot ladder makes putting both the 4 inch pvc and pump pvc into the whole very easy. Also use two metal clothes hangers cut into L shape and test over your bird bath.

  30. I watched your hand dug well and I also live in GA and was curious where you're located…
    I am interested in digging my own well and am curious about how far down my water table is.

  31. i've seen someone use a motor, and this auger thing… hey have a metal vertical holder thing that they add to it that makes it stand up straight while its turning… Then they use a PVC pipe to suck it up, they mix water down the hole so the mud goes through the pipe

  32. The VERY FIRST THING THAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN SAID …….DO NOT DRINK THIS WATER !!! This water is seepage water or simply rain water that has not been filtered good yet….The ground is covered with bacteria and when it rains that water mixes with that bacteria and seeps it into the ground…That is why a drilled well does down into at least the first water formation for irrigation and the second or third formation depending on the water's ph level for a residence or home use. It takes rain water around 70 yrs to seep down 100ft. so by the time it travels through topsoil, clays, chalks, several different sands , rocks, shells, it has been purified by nature and is clean fresh mineral water. This water in this shallow setting could possibly even contaminate livestock or garden plants with bacteria if used on them…..

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *