How to Install a Pitcher Pump

    Red Pitcher Pump in Video – $41.95

    Some survival issues are really hard, and some are very easy. If you are on well water and you are worried that you will not be able to drink once the grids goes down for good, you are correct. But there is a good chance that an inexpensive “Pitcher Pump” will solve your problem. The sole requirement is a well head under 25 feet. That means that regardless how deep the actual well extends, the physical water level in the well is less than 25 feet from the surface. I said in the video that these pumps were $50-$60, but a recent price war online has brought them down to under $50 now. Don’t get caught up in the different brands. They are all the same, regardless of price.

    If you have an all above ground system, with a regular turbine pump drawing directly from the well, it is probably going to look like the system in the video. Almost definitely your head is above 25 feet, and all you’ll have to do is install it above your well head like you see, then re-prime your system.

    Artesian wells supply a positive pressure from under the ground, from some sort of moving aquifer that can be over 400 feet down. Your electric pump is all the way down there, fed by a 220v electric line with a tube coming up to your house. But your actual well head is usually fairly close to the surface, and with an Artesian well you don’t have to worry about losing your house prime to check it. Take off your well head cap and look down with a flashlight. If you can see the water, there is a good chance that you can use a Pitcher Pump. There are adapters you can get online to bring the 4″ casing down to the 1 1/4″ inlet size on the bottom of the pump. Then you’ll have to prime the pump at first, and keep the leathers wet, as I explain in the video.

    If you are on city water, and believe me, I get this question more than any other (except perhaps “should I buy gold and silver to which my answer is no dumbass buy food), it could be that a Pitcher Pump is a viable option.

    Think about it. When the pumps eventually stop, there will still be a connection to the water in the pipes. For most people the pumps should stay on for 3-6 months after the grid collapse, assuming they are not sabotaged. My research has shown that most water systems run on natural gas with a big reserve, and many of them are connected to an actual natural gas well. But after that, all that is preventing water from coming out of your tap is pressure. If you can prime your line down to the water level, there should be no reason that you can’t pull water out of the supply yourself. The problem is, you can’t try it, because the water is under pressure now. But keeping the required hardware on hand to tap your city water line isn’t a big investment.

    Likewise drawing water out of your own cistern. If you invested in one of the tank options that I have covered, you still need a way to get the water into the house. Mount the Pitcher Pump to a counter and you can route PVC to your cistern, giving you easy water indoors, without any plastic pump pieces to fail.

    This will also work for a pond or stream near your home. Route in the pipes now, before winter, and you’ll be able to keep water flowing without having to chop holes in the ice.

    What if your head is greater than 25 feet? I’ve covered a couple options in a past column, and even bought a couple of them, but I haven’t had the example well to test them on. Since then I’ve seen a few more, so just Google around, and get busy. Water is the #1 most important resource in a collapse, and once it is too late, it’s too late.

    Paul Helinski

    Leave a Comment

    • Alex May 30, 2022, 6:56 am Reply

      paul,you had a video out that showed how to buy the parts and a round ceramic block filter that ended up looking like those berkey filter systems,two five gallon cans on top of the other. i found places that sell the parts but can’t find that particular round block filter you showed,i was washable and 100% reusable,thanks,alex.

      • Paul Helinski May 30, 2022, 7:23 am Reply

        They have them on It is the Just Water filter. The newest article actually has a link at the bottom to that page.

    • Robert August 30, 2022, 6:51 pm Reply

      My well is 660 ft .. lol, I’m screwed.. once my diesel runs out on my ginny.. with 1200 gallon storage and 200 gallons of diesel I guess I’ll be ok for awhile if that’s all I used it for… cool article either way, thanks

      • Paul Helinski September 4, 2022, 4:19 pm Reply

        Your head isn’t 660′. It is probably right there.