Solar Livestock Waterers vs Frostfree Nosepumps
Solar Livestock Waterers Require an Abundance of Sunlight
Solar livestock watering systems are very common amongst producers that water their herds in remote areas. While there are certainly benefits to any system that keeps livestock out of natural waterways, solar powered waterers can be problematic in a number of ways. The biggest challenge with solar livestock watering systems is that they rely on the sun to generate energy.
The sun’s energy is collected via solar panels and then stored in batteries, which in turn power the system. It’s quite common to discover that a solar watering system is incapable of keeping up to herd demand because of lack of sunlight (overcast days and/or short days in the winter). However the Frostfree Nosepump livestock waterer relies on nothing but a thirsty animal to function.
No matter if you have one, or a hundred head, your herd can drink on demand any time of the day or night, during any season. There is no need to count on having sunny days to ensure your pump works. In the case of large herds, multiple Frostfree Nosepumps can be utilized.
Solar Livestock Waterers Require Regular Attention & Maintenance
Solar livestock watering systems are quite elaborate. They utilize many parts and electronics to function effectively. There are solar panels, batteries, wiring, sensors, etc. that are prone to wear out, become damaged, and even vandalized.
Trouble shooting and repair can often be beyond the scope and ability of the average agricultural producer. As such, users of solar livestock watering systems are constantly spending time and resources to ensure their system continues to function adequately.
Frostfree Nosepumps Ltd. has recently coined the slogan “Simplicity equals Reliability”. Our livestock watering pump uses no power or electronics, and has only one moving part in its function! Even on the rare occasion that a Frostfree Nosepump actually requires some maintenance, it is such a simple and accessible device, that any producer can handle this task on their own in a short period of time.
Solar Livestock Waterers Are Expensive
Solar livestock waterers are quite expensive. The overall cost of this type of watering system stems from their elaborate design, the maintenance factors, and having to compensate for short, cloudy days and large herds. It is not uncommon for the total investment of a somewhat reliable solar watering system to end up being over double the initial price, plus the ongoing cost of maintenance.
A Frostfree Nosepump requires an initial investment to develop a wet well and install the system, however once your pump(s) are properly installed, you don’t spend any more money. No matter how many (or few) head of livestock you are watering (up to 100 head per pump), or how long or short the days are, you can reliably water you livestock with virtually no ongoing input expenses whatsoever.
Solar Livestock Waterers Promote Bacteria Growth
Solar livestock waterers can contaminate your water source. It is common for solar systems to deal with an overabundance of water exposed to your livestock by allowing that unconsumed water to drain back into your water source. With any year-round, winter watering system, leftover water must be either drained away from the surface, or heated at the surface to prevent the system from freezing. If water that is exposed to livestock can get back into your water source, you are putting bacteria into your source which is an unhealthy practice.
The Frostfree Nosepump is very unique in this way. Because livestock using our device literally pump their own water and only net approximately one half litre per pump, there is never an overabundance of water in the trough. Because of this, they consume the water they pump as they are pumping, and when they walk away from the Frostfree Nosepump, they always leave the small drinking trough empty. The Frostfree Nosepump livestock waterer doesn’t leave any contaminated water in the trough, uncontaminated water in the supply pipe drains back into the source.
How a Solar Waterer Works
Solar livestock waterers use solar panels to convert energy from the sunlight into electricity stored in specially designed deep cycle batteries. That converted and stored energy is used to electrically power some sort of sensor or eye which activate a water pump to produce water for livestock when they are in the immediate vicinity of the watering station. Water is electrically pumped up from the source and temporarily contained in a drinking bowl for the livestock to consume. After a small period of time, the water is allowed to run back into the protected source before it freezes.
How The Frostfree Nosepump Livestock Waterer Works
The Frostfree Nosepump is a device that livestock use to manually draw water from a wet well overtop of, or beside a reliable groundwater source (i.e. shallow well, dugout, pond, river etc.). This is a powerless system that relies only on geothermal heat from the ground, and thirsty livestock to function year round in any climate.
Please review the factors that we implement to prevent frost here.
The plumbing (including the cylinder with the piston in it) is suspended from the Frostfree Nosepump down into the water in the wet well (below ground level and below the frost zone in the ground) with a one way foot valve allowing the system to maintain its prime (see applications diagram for clarification).
Livestock push on a pendulum that is attached to a piston pump suspended into the water. During normal operation, the first animal receives water on the fourth push (weep hole can be disabled during introduction of this device to your livestock). Each full stroke of the pendulum nets approximately one half litre of water into the trough for consumption. Within two and a half minutes of the Frostfree Nosepump being left idle, the weep hole allows the top five feet of the vertical supply line to drain away from the surface, back into the source.
The drinking trough does not need to be drained as there is never an overabundance of water (livestock consume what they pump). As such, it is very important to note that bacteria cannot get into your water source as no contaminated water is allowed to drain back.
Frostfree Nosepump Benefits:
- A livestock water pump that increases production:
Providing reliable access to higher quality water results in better yields from your herd.
- A livestock water pump that improves herd health:
Keeping your livestock (and their contaminants) out of their water source improves animal heath.
- A livestock water pump that saves you money:
You’ll have no monthly power bills, no upkeep of electrical components, no batteries to maintain, no generator expense, and no fuel costs; you can literally water your herd for free.
- A livestock water pump that saves you time:
No more hauling, pumping, or carrying water, no chopping ice, or thawing water bowls. Your livestock work for you, instead of you doing all of the work for your livestock.
- A livestock water pump that helps save the environment:
Keeping livestock out of natural waterways and dugouts not only keeps these sources cleaner, but allows for re-establishment of vegetation in surrounding areas, which will in turn reduce erosion and help filter run off. The Frostfree Nosepump qualifies for a number of environmental programs and grants. We continue to work with organizations like Alberta Environment and the National Resources Conservation Service.