How a Windmill Works

How a Water Pumping Windmill Works (A quick overview)

Windmill Overview
A typical windmill installation

A water pumping windmill is a simple machine that uses wind energy to move water. The windmills we sell today use the same wind wheel that was introduced in 1890’s. The 18 sails capture the wind, even at low wind speeds, to lift water using a piston pump.

Above Ground

The wind wheel shaft turns small drive gears that intermesh with larger gears. Those larger gears connect to a pitman arm that transforms the revolving motion to an up and down motion. The pitman arm lifts a pump rod up and pulls it down.

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Below Ground

The pump rod travels down the shaft to a pump cylinder submerged below the standing water level.

The pump cylinder has two check valves that open and close as the piston moves up and down. The piston pushes water up the drop pipe.

Windmills can be used to pump water from ponds or wells. They can even be used to pump air to aerate ponds.

I wrote a detailed article for Home Power Magazine that you can read for more information on how a windmill works here.

Courtesy of The American Wind Power CenterHow a Windmill Works

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