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Thread: Old water cistern

  1. #1
    DIY Senior Member Master Brian's Avatar
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    Default Old water cistern

    Not sure plumbing is the best area for this, but it is a plumbing feature...

    I was busting up an approximately 4' x 5' cement slab yesterday so that I could extend/finish my patio area. I went to pull away one of the chunks of concrete and found a HUGE pit. My best guess is that it is an old cistern. There is a pipe just inside my basement wall that had been cut flush to the wall and plugged, always wondered what that was for, and a pipe that goes down into the pit.

    The pit is about 8' deep and about 8-10' in diameter and appears to be pre-formed cement as the ceiling of it appears to be domed on the inside. I don't have the entire thing uncovered, as I kind of stopped to figure out what my next move is, but the opening to the pit also appears to be something that is pre-formed into the ceiling. The opening is about 18"-24" in diameter. There is also a brick wall that seems to split the pit into two halves.

    At this point, I'm leaning towards filling it with dirt, but don't want to regret that decision. Any ideas to cap it? Any ideas for uses? I've thought about capturing rainwater, but the water table is very low in my area and I am just a pump away from having a working sandpoint well. I also don't know if this thing would still hold water, but may know shortly as we've received over 3" of rain since midnight and rain is in forecast all week. As of last night, the weather showed dry all week!! NICE HUH!!

    If wanted, I'll post some pics of what I have uncovered. I'd love some ideas of a use before I fill it. I just put in a fish pond, so I don't need another, but that would have been pretty cool.

  2. #2
    DIY Senior Member Master Brian's Avatar
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    Default

    One more thing, the house was built in 1915, if that makes any difference. I've been trying to google any info on old cisterns, but haven't gotten anywhere fast.

  3. #3
    DIY Senior Member Runs with bison's Avatar
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    Default

    That's actually pretty cool if you could use it to collect roof runoff for a sprinkler system. (I'm getting a bit tired of having roof runoff cutting ruts...and wish I had a cistern for it.) If it is dry at present you don't seem to have to worry about it becoming a well.

    I wonder if a local historical society would have some members who know about such architectural history in your area?

  4. #4

    Default

    Maybe it's a fallout shelter.
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