By Anita L. Sherman
Judson Walls is a guy who as an Air Force navigator mapped out the skies guiding B-52s. When he retired in 2000, he then trekked to Tysons Corner where he worked for some 10 years as a business and government consultant.
But it was in 2008 that he had an epiphany about his next venture. And it was an epiphany born of necessity.
“We bought a lovely home in Fauquier County,” says Walls, “but when a storm came through we lost power and our well went out so I found myself buying bottled water…it was our first time on a well system…when you lose power, you lose water.”
“So, I went searching for a solution…other than a generator for the entire house which can be very expensive to install and maintain..and I didn’t find one…and that’s when I decided it was a problem that shouldn’t be that hard to solve.”
With an electrical background and a determined spirit, Walls began experimenting in his basement on a system of storage tanks that would automatically provide water if your well breaks down either to some fault in the pump or due to a storm. He filed for a patent and by 2012 had found a manufacturer.
“This has been the hardest thing I’ve ever done,” smiled Walls who is now ready to bring his product and service to market and he hopes to do it on a national and global scale.
While conceiving the idea some eight years ago, he’s kicked into high gear within the last six months and is optimistic that once the word starts to get out that not only homeowners on a well water system but plumbers, home builders and agencies involved in disaster relief will find his invention worth taking a good look at.
“It was definitely born of necessity,” says Walls. Simple in concept, Constant Water requires no generator. A 40-gallon tank of pressurized water will automatically kick in to keep a household’s sinks, showers and toilets going for at least a few days until water is restored. Battery powered, the units of water are kept continually full and continually fresh as the water running through them is the same water as in your well.
Storage tanks are placed inside the house usually close to the water heater.
“When you’ve got elderly or small children in the house, you can’t afford to be without water,” says Walls noting that with Constant Water as a backup for your water, if you have a generator, it could then be focused on electrical needs.
The unit runs roughly $1,400 to install with one 40-gallon tank. If you find that you need more than that, another tank is $760.
“We’re very excited and this is very rewarding,” says Walls who has donated one system to a Habitat for Humanity home in Rappahannock County.
“It’s a smart but simple system and it can reduce costs.”
With millions of homeowners on well water systems not only in Virginia but nationwide, Walls is thrilled with the possibilities.