I have first hand experience with the Storm Pump, made in Sagle, Idaho in the American Redoubt. This is a hand pump that attaches to your well head and sits next to your submersible pump. It costs about the same as the Simple Pump. I actually took a second job to save up for it, but the peace of mind was well worth the effort. They are manufactured by Terry Deal in Sagle, and he will also install them for a reasonable price. I have had the pump for about a year and a half now, and I am very happy with its quality. My well has a static level of 150′, and the pump retains its prime so well that it never takes more than 20 pumps to bring water to the surface, even after being left alone for several months. Terry has torture tested one of his pumps by hooking it to an engine and cycling it 250,000 times with no loss of pressure. I seriously doubt that my storm pump will be cycled more than a quarter million times, during my lifetime and my children’s lifetimes.
I will say that when you are pumping your own water from 150′, you become VERY aware of your water usage. It should be a regular event for your family to shut off the breaker and practice living without grid electricity.
Aside from personal preparedness, I would like to discuss the mindset behind owning a manual well pump. If in the future we are reduced to a society without electricity, access to water is going to be of significant importance. I have heard other preppers talk about locking up their well pumps to prevent people from stealing water from them. I ask you, if Jesus owned a piece of property and installed a hand pump onto his well, would he deny his neighbors and their children access to the near limitless supply of clean drinking water God has provided beneath his feet? Instead of allowing your neighbors to die of thirst in a grid-down situation, causing them to resort to desperate (or deadly?) measures to obtain water for survival, would it not be preferable to allow them access to your well, thus strengthening your community as a whole? – D.R.
HJL Responds: Locking a water pump is always a good idea. You can still share your water; however, allowing unfettered access is a sure fire way to get your well sabotaged by the fellow down the road who wants to sell his water at a premium price. It happens all the time in water scarce areas now. Many wars and battles have been fought over scarce water resources. When water is the currency of the day, you still have your “evil bankers” to contend with.