The 7 Best Shallow Well Pumps

Updated May 20, 2018 by Jeff Newburgh

7 Best Shallow Well Pumps
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 47 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top options for this wiki. For rural homes and business without access to city water lines, one of these tough and long-lasting shallow well pumps will make efficient work of drawing up ground water and delivering it to your property's plumbing system. We've included durable options with easy-to-access components and powerful motors that provide plenty of water pressure for farm irrigation projects and other applications. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best shallow well pump on Amazon.

7. Flotec FP4012

Boasting a 10 gallon-per-minute flow capacity at 40 PSI, the Flotec FP4012 is strong enough to handle the water demands of most rural homes. A dependable cover protects all internal electrical components from dust, dirt, and insects. It's a bit on the noisy side.though.
  • insulated motor windings
  • stainless steel shaft
  • instruction manual is confusing
Brand Flotec
Model FP4012-10
Weight 23.8 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

6. Superior 94505

The Superior 94505 has a pre-mounted and fully adjustable pressure switch, a glass-filled thermoplastic diffuser and impeller, and a cast-iron seal plate. It is compatible with both 115- and 230-volt power supplies for versatile connection options, but it is quite heavy.
  • maximum pressure of 67 psi
  • installation is straightforward
  • doesn't have a check valve
Brand Superior Pump
Model 94505
Weight 37.3 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

5. Wayne SWS100

The Wayne SWS100 is a high-efficiency option powered by a square flange motor housed in a durable, cast-iron volute with an integrated priming port. Additionally, a one-year limited warranty is provided. However, the included mounting bracket is rather flimsy.
  • can also be used as a booster pump
  • flow rate of 630 gallons per hour
  • threads are too coarse
Brand Wayne
Model SWS100
Weight 44.2 pounds
Rating 4.4 / 5.0

4. Meditool Booster Pump

Whether it's being used for garden irrigation projects or washing your car, the Meditool Booster Pump can easily get the job done. Equipped with thermal overload protection, its fan-cooled, continuous-duty motor delivers a maximum flow rate of up to 845 gallons per hour.
  • built-in carrying handle
  • very affordable price
  • priming it is cumbersome
Brand Meditool
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

3. Sta-Rite SNE-L

The Sta-Rite SNE-L has been constructed from sturdy stainless steel for maximum corrosion resistance, while the permanently-lubricated and shielded ball bearings help to provide a smooth, whisper-quiet operation as well as extend the life of its one-horsepower motor.
  • works from depths of up to 25 feet
  • clean-out plug for easy servicing
  • protective dustproof canopy
Brand Sta-Rite Industries SNE
Model SNE-L
Weight pending
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

2. Red Lion RJS-100

Good for large rural homes, cottages, and farms, the Red Lion RJS-100 has a convenient voltage selector for quick and simple connections to existing power sources. It is capable of producing up to 50 PSI of water pressure and pumping from depths of up to 25 feet.
  • operates very quietly
  • rust-resistant cast-iron casing
  • extremely durable construction
Brand Red Lion
Model 602208
Weight 41.3 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

1. Goulds BF03S

Designed for continuous operation, the compact Goulds BF03S leverages a dependable start capacitor and an ability to automatically adjust itself to the water demands of the surrounding environment. This means it never requires re-priming, even when the water level drops.
  • built-in overload protection
  • easy-to-access nozzle and diffuser
  • strong mechanical seal
Brand Goulds
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

Hydration For The Home: Establishing A Working Well

In most temperate regions of North America, ground water is one of the most reliable sources of potable water, and it accumulates in underground aquifers that are usually close enough to the earth's surface to be tapped with relative ease by digging an extraction well.

There are many reasons why ground water is a viable, and sometimes even preferable, source of water for human and agricultural use. Except in times of drought, ground water tends to be a dependable water source, thanks to the natural water table, or the saturation levels of the subterranean rock and soil layers. Ground water also resists pollution better than surface sources such as streams, lakes, or even man-made reservoirs. Thus, ground water is tapped as the single largest source of water for many municipalities.

Ground water can also be sourced on a much smaller scale. Individual properties can sink and establish their own working wells, tapping into their local ground water aquifers as either the primary or backup source of water for their home, farm, or other property type. And if the property in question is located in an area with a water table near the surface, a basic shallow well should be more than sufficient to supply the needed water. For wells dug down to depths no deeper than 25 feet below the surface, a shallow well pump should be more than adequate to move the water up and into the property's plumbing system.

Installing a well on your property is a process best left to professionals, and it is likely you will need to complete a permitting process prior to the commencement of its construction. In general, the installation of a well should cost less than $10,000, and in some regions may be completed for half that figure, with the digging, well casing, screens, pumps, and all the other materials and equipment factored in. A well is a substantial initial investment, but the opportunity for reliable, locally-sourced water is well worth the expense.

Choosing A Shallow Well Pump

The single most important factor involved in establishing a reliable well is the presence of plentiful ground water. But after that, the shallow well pump you choose for your well is the next critical consideration. A shallow well pump, sometimes referred to as a jet pump, is an electrically powered impeller system wherein a propeller-shaped unit draws water up and through the water tight shaft leading from the aquifer to the property's plumbing system. Once water has begun to flow up and past this impeller (these systems require initial "priming," or filling with water) the natural properties of a vacuum keep the water flowing as needed.

Shallow well pumps range in price from around two hundred on the lower end, to around four hundred for more powerful models; so all units are relatively affordable, especially given the critical function they perform. First and foremost in your decision-making process must be a consideration of the volume of water your property needs. For a single family residence, most lower-priced pumps will suffice. For a property needing water for the home and for an irrigation system that will serve gardens or even fields of edibles, more water -- thus a more powerful pump -- must be extracted.

Next, consider the power source to which your shallow well pump will connect. Most units can work with the standard 120-volt electrical outlets found in most American homes; some shallow well pumps can also be adjusted to connect with the unique power supply arrangements of a property, such as in homes powered by solar panels, generators, or other setups.

Finally, consider the elements of the area in which your pump will run. If dust and debris are common around your property, make sure to find a unit with a dust shield. If the pump is likely to see heavy use, consider a unit with thermal overload protection. These and other considerations will help you establish the ideal well for your specific needs.

Shallow Well Pump Use And Maintenance

Keeping your property's well in good working order isn't a luxury, it's a necessity. If your well uses a well screen, make sure to periodically inspect and clean it so you ensure continual consistence in water flow volume. Also, check any grouted areas from time to time, as cracks can waste water and compromise well function.

Try to keep organic materials, ranging from mulch to compost to leaves, away from the well as much as possible, as they increase the potential for debris in the system. This is also true for hazardous materials like paint or fuel. Watch for any changes in water appearance, taste, or smell, as these and other signs may indicate a potentially dangerous issue.

And think beyond the well itself: while initial well installation is limited by setbacks, such as a 10-foot distance from electric lines, a 50-foot distance from grave sites, and a 75-foot setback from septic pits, also remember where your well is when you install other elements such as these. Just as you can't safely sink a well right next to a gas line, you can't later run a gas line right next to your well.

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Last updated on May 20, 2018 by Jeff Newburgh

A dedicated writer and communications professional spending his days lost in the intricacies of both proposal and freelance writing. When not sharing the knowledge of both fully and self-insured medical benefits to employer groups of all industries within California, Jeff Newburgh can be found at home spending time with his family and 3 dogs, pondering the next chew toy to be thrown, while kicking back and relaxing with a nice glass of red wine.

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