Question on buffer tank size

I know this is a popular topic but I could not find an answer for my situation.

I have a 4GPM belt drive PW. I will occasionally PW homes with a water-well pump and not city water. I know for sure some of these will not deliver 4gpm.

Lets assume the well pump delivers 2 or 3 GPM. My plan is to get a 55 gallon drum, put a hudson valve on it (already ordered it) and run the home well pump into that 55 gal tank and I will plan to use that 55 gal for my source into the PW. I know I will be at a deficit of about 1-2GPM so if I fill the buffer tank up, then stick a hose from the well pump into the tank to keep filling it I should be able to use that supply for a fair amount of time, agree?

Aside from not having a water supply available, and I guess pulling 8GPM from your system I don’t get why guys feel the need to use a 275 gal IBC tote.

Are there any potential issue with this setup?


Hard to strap down a drum.

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I think you answered your own question:

4 gpm machine on a 3 gpm source = 1 gpm deficit. You’ll get about 50 minutes of run time out of a 55 gallon buffer (assuming you don’t run it dry, and always have ~ 5 gallons at the bottom). This is perfectly doable for most purposes.

8 gpm on a 3 gpm source = 5 gpm deficit. You’ll only have 10 minutes of runtime with a 55 gallon tank. This is not an acceptable situation for most professionals.

I agree with @Innocentbystander : a drum is really hard to secure. If you like the small footprint, a few places sell a rectangular 55 gallon vertical tank. 18” x 18” x ~41” tall.

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Awesome, this is what I needed to hear. Thanks to both of you!

This is a good way to strap it down.

I use it to transport my pickups from my supplier . What do you think ? Maybe welding on two more handles between the existing would be more secure as well

I don’t think so, but it’s not on my trailer so it doesn’t matter I guess. To much money to be made in this business to be using drums anyway.

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Stay away from houses on wells as much as possible (my oppionion, im sure others will disagree). I’m still new to PWing but last year the 3 houses that I did have on a well were nothing but issues.

After you fill your tank the water pump cannot keep up with the washer and you will end up waiting for the tank to fill up enough to continue. I’m sure some of it was me not being proficient and probably using more water than needed.

I cannot imagine it being any good for their pump/bladder to run constantly either.

Keep in mind also, if its a dry summer and you run their well dry with chemicals on the house thats not a situation you want to be in. I actually had one of my neighbors ask me to clean their deck yesterday but I cannot use their water because their well is too low. They want me to bring water which would mean I have to back and fourth to my house and theirs to fill up…no thanks.