I will be so happy and grateful when this weather breaks so that the guys can crawl under my house to fix these pipes!
Until then, I am very happy and grateful that the outdoor spigot was on the live side of the house shutoff!
Word to the wise: Invest in an outdoor spigot that will not be affected if you have to shut the water off to your house for plumbing repairs. It is so much easier to deal with things that way!
I connect a water hose to the spigot and run it through a window during the sunny part of the day (the sun is to keep the hose from freezing in this weather). I connect this water hose to a y-connector. One end of the y-connector hooks to the cold water line on my washing machine, and the other has the repurposed hot water line attached so that I can fill up my jugs and clean things while doing laundry.
It actually isn’t that bad. I keep the hose indoors so that it won’t freeze solid–another lesson learned. I have a small antique washstand that I am now keeping in my kitchen (no room in the bathroom) with water to wash my hands and take sponge baths (called whore baths during my mountain childhood when the well was low in summer).
All water gets used in the commode to flush as needed. I put wash water when I wash my hands into the back reservoir on the commode so that I can flush as needed. Hey, it works!
All water is currently getting heated on my stovetop. Thank goodness for large pots, metal bowls and teakettles!
I must admit I am looking forward to a long hot soak in the bathtub. That is the one luxury that I seriously miss. However, I am clean, I have plenty of water, I can do laundry, and this situation is a LOT better than it could be! I mean, the spigot could have been on the wrong side of the house shutoff–though for the record if that were the case I would have cut that stupid pipe and installed another shutoff to have a water source–and let the guys fix my chop job how they may!
If one was living in a rustic setting it would greatly reduce expenses to have a wellhouse built over your well, where you install the pump and washing machine (and a generator if you aren’t connected to the grid). Fire up the generator and run the washer while filling up all of your water containers, then shut off everything when done. You would have to arrange some type of heat to keep the room above freezing in winter, however. I would not put windows in the building, opting instead for using the two-liter bottle method as skylights.
You take clear two-liter soda bottles and fill with water and a spoonful of bleach, capping well. Over the regular cap you glue a film canister to keep the sunlight from degrading the lid, the mount this in your ceiling of your buildings. There is a video about it on YouTube that is amazing. Here, check it out for yourself!* See Note
This way you would not waste electricity with a pump running all of the time, as well as being there when you ran the pump to avoid a dry well in case of a burst pipe.
You would also avoid having to plumb your house this way, meaning you would not have to worry about frozen pipes in the winter and the resulting water damage.
You could use a composting toilet and a gray-water disposal setup at the house. I would have at least a single drain indoors to conveniently dispose of water using this method.
Heck, with this as a beginning, you could eventually put a hottub or something in the wellhouse, gradually filling it with the wellwater. Once you got it filled you wouldn’t have to bother filling it again, just topping it up. Then you could luxuriate in the hottub while doing your laundry!
Best part would be the fact that no one would dream that you would have such a sweet setup in such a rustic place!
When my daughter turns 18 and moves out, Mom may see about doing something like that. I could have my rustic environment and my luxuries too!
I got to thinking about this: For my location water in the two-liter bottles would not be practical because of freezing, but rubbing alcohol would work! Yes it would be more expensive than plain water and bleach, but it is clear like water, would not grow things like algae, and would not freeze in the winter!