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Water Drinking water, wells, ponds, saving, purifying, etc.

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  #1  
Old 04-15-2010, 03:00 AM
Andy Jones Andy Jones is offline
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Default Deep well owners...Any problems?

I get my water from a 320' deep well with a submersible pump that was drilled 12 years ago.A few days ago,I started getting a lot of black sand in the water and air spurting and spitting from the faucets and showers.The company that drilled the well said the system usually needs some maintenance after about 8 yrs,so I felt like I came out pretty good.

I called the well company and told them what was going on.They said it's probably your WJ float valve had gone bad,causing the excess air in the tank to stir up the sediment in the tank,causing the sand to get into the pipes.I thought I could fix it myself,so I bought the part from them for $40.I replaced the WJ float valve,drained the tank and let it run for several minutes to flush the system out.

I'm so happy that this fixed it with a minimum of time,effort and money.I've still got one daughter in college and she's getting married in a couple of months,so I needed a break.

Andy
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Old 04-15-2010, 10:26 AM
NCLee NCLee is offline
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Glad to hear that it turned out to be a relatively easy/inexpensive fix.

Don't forget the washing machine hoses when you clean the sand and sediment from the faucet filters.

Lee
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Old 04-16-2010, 02:38 AM
Andy Jones Andy Jones is offline
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I'm glad you mentioned that,NCLee.No wonder it's taking the washing machine 15 minutes to fill up.I didn't think about that!Thanks.

Andy
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  #4  
Old 06-16-2010, 11:46 PM
MEBrian Male MEBrian is offline
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Good water is priceless. I can't imagine what some folks go through to supply it. Yeah, I read of it on the forum. That's tough.

285' deep well here, the pump is 100' down in the well and that's plenty deep enough- we can't even begin to lower the water level. We'd get granite grit from the drilling through our system and it'd plug the screen filter on the inlet hose to the washer. That was a pain to clean and always got water on the floor, so I tied into the line going from the well to the pressure tank and put in a sediment filter. The grit would plug the aerators on the faucets too. I change the filter once a year and no problems at all since then. Mostly, what I find in the filter is rust from the well casing, the water certainly doesn't taste like iron nor does it coat the hopper bowl. Don't need to drain the hot water tank to remove sediment anymore either. Well, that was before last year. We put a tankless in so I couldn't drain it if I wanted to.

Andy, if you put in a filter you might change it more often, but it's a simple thing to do.

There for awhile we had a problem with the water smelling after a year w/o treating the system with either bleach or H2O2. That problem developed over a few years time. Somehow I figured out that it was our water system and not the well (I don't remember how). Yes I do. The wtare only stank after sitting unused for a time. Then after the pump cycled a few times it cleared up, so it wasn't coming from the well. Then I checked the pressure tank, and the air pressure was almost nonexistent. That explained the rapid cycling of the pump too- I thought the tank was kaput. Now when I change the filter I also check the charge on the air side of the tank. I don't know what was happening biologically, but no more stinky water and no more treating of the water system either.

Other than that, we have some of the best water in the state (Maine). Everyone comments on our water, it's naturally soft, cool, clear and delicious, and we have an incredible amount of delivery rate available- I'd need 10x the pump we now have to take advantage of that. Makes excellent beer too with only boiling a small amount of wort and adding tap water to make up the batch. Think Poland Spring quality, except I think ours is better, and to think, we use it to flush the hopper and water the garden.

Our first well was a developed spring that the railroad used 150 years ago. The water was good from that too, but when more folks moved onto the hill it dried up one March (the tail end of our "dry season" as far as ground water is concerned- water doesn't penetrate frozen ground). We also had a difficult time keeping pumps working in the developed spring too. Thunderstorms would fry either the electronics in thecontrol box or the pump itself. When the spring went dry I'd had enough. Then we decided to drill the well we've presently used for the last 20 years.

For those looking to drill a deep well... Ours took 2 days, there are much faster drilling rigs, but we didn't want that. When we hit water it was on the last length of pipe on the truck. They sunk the entire pipe past the seam to give grit a place to settle into. The well filled in under a minute and it sounded like a train. A fantastic sound. The drilling gent wouldn't even speculate on the delivery rate except to say we could supply the entire hill if we wanted to.

Just 750 feet away, a neighbor drilled much deeper than that and only got 1 qt an hour and it's rusty water. So you throw the die and take your chance. We were just lucky to hit a crack in the granite that was connected to a good aquifer, but Maine is noted for good aquifers. FWIW, where I told the driller to set up a neighbor doused for water 30 years previously and indicated to me that the stick was pulling very hard.

One of these days I intend to put a pipe through the well casing on the old spring and pipe it to the road, no more than 15' away. I just think it's nice to supply folks with good water if I can, and it'll be there and free flowing for us if we ever need it. It'd be a shame to just leave it unused since it's there and just needs a hole in the casing and some black poly pipe.
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Old 06-17-2010, 11:14 AM
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ktm rider Male ktm rider is offline
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I have a deep well and the water is horrible. It has a VERY high iron content. It is a pain in the rear to deal with. I have dumped over 5k into Rainsoft systems through the years. They work for about 2 months then the water sucks again. Laundry is always an adventure for sure.
So, I finally dug a trench down to our spring fed creek,( 500ft!) dug a hole in the creek and stuck a pump in it and now we have very nice crystal clear water. I did put a UV light on the system also.
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Old 06-17-2010, 11:20 AM
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I have two wells about 70' both are red water, 30 years ago before the gas co. and mines it was good water now every one has crappy water from their deep wells. But it don't affect the water is what they say, ya reckon. And i seen a flying hippo the other day? ;D
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Old 06-17-2010, 02:53 PM
Andy Jones Andy Jones is offline
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MEBrian,I never thought of putting a filter on the system,but it sure makes sense.My well is 320'deep,but I don't know exactly how deep the pump is situated.It flows 20 gpm and the well driller said it would easily supply 3 households with that volume.
Our water is just great,no iron or bad odors at all.When I was a kid,our well water had a lot of iron and turned our white laundry yellow in short order.
I live in a very remote area,so maybe I'll never have problems with my water being contaminated as some have mentioned.

Andy
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Old 06-17-2010, 10:24 PM
MEBrian Male MEBrian is offline
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I'd be pretty aggravated if someone ruined my deep well, to put it mildly.

Andy, I just checked the filters we use. I get 'em from Home Depot and they look like a homogenous "something". They're specifically for sediment, rust, stuff like that; 30u filtration still gives plenty of flow. If I find a deal on the spun yarn type filter I'd use them too, they work just as good. The nice thing about the spun yarn type is that I'd be willing to bet they'd last longer since the particles go into the weave rather than just stay on the outer surface. For us that isn't such a big deal since I only change the filter element once a year whether it needs it or not, it might be for you though.
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Old 06-18-2010, 09:18 AM
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MrGreenJeans MrGreenJeans is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MEBrian View Post
I'd be pretty aggravated if someone ruined my deep well, to put it mildly.

Andy, I just checked the filters we use. I get 'em from Home Depot and they look like a homogenous "something". They're specifically for sediment, rust, stuff like that; 30u filtration still gives plenty of flow. If I find a deal on the spun yarn type filter I'd use them too, they work just as good. The nice thing about the spun yarn type is that I'd be willing to bet they'd last longer since the particles go into the weave rather than just stay on the outer surface. For us that isn't such a big deal since I only change the filter element once a year whether it needs it or not, it might be for you though.
It is a regular thing around here. I to have had a filter & use redout salt, helps some. The gas co. now is dumping toxic sludge down several wells in this area, but don't worry they pump it out and cart it off. Ya reckon. Its called frackin the well my nephew drove a truck for them a while and he said you all won't believe what they put down there. We have city water to but unless you love clorox which it tastes and smells like heavy. I know of 15 wells that have went dry after use for 40 years or more from the blasting from mining.
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Old 06-19-2010, 01:02 AM
ldsparamedic Male ldsparamedic is offline
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We just had a large Palo Verde tree blow over in a wind storm which broke the main pipe coming from the surge tank. We ended up with sand in the water lines. So far we have had to replace both toilet float valves and several hose bibs due to the sand fouling the seals. Consider yourself lucky.
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  #11  
Old 08-17-2010, 04:11 PM
canuck canuck is offline
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What do you need to look for when buying a property with a well already on the land? What questions do you need to ask and what do you have to look out for? Are pumps in the wells run on electric? Can they be run another way?
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Old 08-17-2010, 11:35 PM
keydl keydl is offline
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Casing diameter, depth and standing water level are easy to look at - capacity from the driller and if it has been tested for drinking use.

Pumps are jet, submersible and cylinder - with or without provisions for cold weather. For irrigation there are turbine pumps.

Cylinder pumps can be run with jack gear, windmills or a counterweight and handle.
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Old 08-18-2010, 10:48 AM
NCLee NCLee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by canuck View Post
What do you need to look for when buying a property with a well already on the land? What questions do you need to ask and what do you have to look out for? Are pumps in the wells run on electric? Can they be run another way?
The first thing to look for, IMHO, is the possibility that the well is or can be contaminated from nearby activities. Some types of manufacturing have a high potential to contaminate the local underground water supply. Another is run off from agricultural operations. Especially, the high intensity commercial operations, whether plant or animal.

In a rural neighborhood where's the nearest septic tank? Either yours or your neighbors. Does someone have an outhouse? Does a neighbor have a pig pen near the property line? How far is that from your well?

The well, itself should be inspected. Is the well situated so it's protected from run off? Does it look well maintained? Is the well cap cracked?

As to asking questions... talk to neighbors to see if there are any local water issues. Around here there's a wide variety of good and bad wells. We're fortunate to have a good bored well. (30') That so far hasn't failed during extreme drought. However, about a mile away, there's a small neighborhood will drilled wells who have to ration water during drought. The refill rate on those wells is extremely slow. A half mile on either side of me wells had to be drilled. Depths range from about 120' to over 400' with varying rates of flow.

In addition to the quantity of water the well will produce, the next question is about the quality. This will vary widely by region and even within fairly short distances. I know of 2 wells that have material problems with rust that are nearby.

If there's any question about the quality of the water, or if the well hasn't been used for a while, find out where you can have the water tested. As a part of your contract to purchase, make sure you can get out of it, if the water tests indicate problems with the water that can't be easily corrected.

As to pumps, generally these are run by electricity. Can be setup to run off a propane generator. Solar power may be another option to run the pump. And, as previously mentioned windmills is another option.

Finally, depending on the depth of the well, water can be drawn manually. Bucket and chain, hand pumps, and other mechanical devices that rely on human or draft animal to supply the power.

Hope this helps.
Lee
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:17 PM
neparose neparose is offline
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Last year we had an odd incident happen with our deep well. It was 20 years old and always seemed to have a slow recovery. I could never run a slip and slide for the kids for more than 15 min. or the water would start getting murky. We also had black sand in the back of the toilet taks, and in the filter screens of the washer and sink faucets. Whenever we did plumbing work, we saw that the pipes were coated with a black substance that you could scrape out. This stuff would dry out into a fine powder but we figured hey, live with what you got. On easter morning a toilet got stuck in the middle of the night and ran the well dry and fried the pump. When the well guy came out and pulled our pump, he took one look at all that black stuff coating all the pvc and said "ya'll got manganese water." Apparently this mineral has been slowly over the years clogging up all the feeder veins to the well. He gave us a few options but they all just led to the problem coming back again and none of them were cheap fixes. So with the backhoe, we just dug a trench from the house to as far out as we could go before we hit ledge and told the drillers to drill there. So far so good and the well guy said we were definatly on a different water table so we are keeping our fingers crossed. On a bright note, this gives me all the excuse in the world to put in a hand pump on the old well head! Now if I could just convince hubby ........haha!
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Old 08-18-2010, 06:17 PM
NCLee NCLee is offline
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Are you subject to ice storms that can take the power out for 2 weeks? If so, pull out a pencil and a calculator. If you don't already have a generator, add the cost of one and the fuel to run it for 2 weeks. That may cover the cost of the hand pump. Next, find out how often such an event happens in your area over a 10 year period. What would your estimated cost be to operate the generator, using higher and higher priced fuel.

While this particular example may not work for you, put on your thinking cap. There's gotta be a way to convenience hubby of the need for that backup pump!!! I know that if I had more than one well, a hand pump would have already been installed in one of them. All I needed to convience me was the time the pump failed and I was out at 3:00 in the morning looking for water, so better half could take meds and get ready to go to work at 5:00.

BTW, that also taught me to always have stored drinking water in the house.

Lee
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  #16  
Old 10-25-2010, 09:54 AM
Rickhead Rickhead is offline
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http://www.bisonpumps.com/

sawweeeeet.
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Old 10-25-2010, 07:23 PM
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offgridbob Male offgridbob is offline
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Is 575 feet deep enough for you? No problems yet but we are moving so won't have to worry about it. It's only two years old though. Our new place is gravity feed from a spring 200 feet above the house.
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Old 08-18-2015, 06:53 PM
Renee Female Renee is offline
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We had our well dug 4 years ago, hit water at 540' with static pressure to 200' and 15gpm. We just finished having our new home built and are already having problems. Our water is very salty, like take a drink of ocean water. We are in Excelsior Springs, MO (lots of mineral water springs). We already had a leak at the connection to the well.

We have a pressure tank and filtration system with UV light but now I guess we are needing an RO system to get the salt out.

That's one problem, the other is we are getting sputtering when we turn on faucets, showers and even flushing toilets. We are at a loss as to what the problem may be. Anyone have any ideas?

We have a water sample to take for testing to see what else our water may have in it so we can cover all our bases.

We have shut off the pump during the day to check to see pressure tank holds and so far it has. I noticed yesterday it was at 55psi before we left home and when I got home it was the same. This morning after hubby showered and we flushed toilets it was at 43psi. I will check it when I get home again. It doesn't matter what we do the sputtering is there.
When we fixed the leak that night and the next morning no sputtering, when I got home from work it started up again. I have noticed that it is worse on the hot side.

Do you think the anode rod may be reacting to the salt/minerals in the water?
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Old 09-03-2015, 06:13 PM
Renee Female Renee is offline
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I got my water sample test back and the Chloride result was 4500ppm, sea water is 10,000ppm and my TDS was 10,000ppm. Not sure what we are going to do at this point. Anyone have any suggestions??
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