This is my 1st post on this forum, I looking for some ideas, advise or experience with such a problem
Ok some quick background on this issue. I have a well that is about 30yrs old. Water depth of 188ft pump is at 218 and I believe the total depth is around 280 or so. We purchased this house 10years ago. During this time we have had decent water quality using a standard water softener and a RO unit for drinking. I believe we were at the upper limits of a water softener. Sorry I do not have water analysis numbers yet. I just sent them out today. I will post them as soon as I get them back. The water straight out of the well has always been clear with a strong iron taste. The iron would precipitate out in the kids pool and coat the bottom with iron. Now the change, about 2 weeks ago. We started to get gray/black colored water and reduced pump volume. We called out the well company and they verified the low volume and high pump current and suggested lifting the pump to get a look. Good thing we did. The galv. Pipe was ready to go. Just placing his wrench on a section just above the check valve caused it to crumble. So with the condition of the pipe and the age of the pump we decided to install a new pump and PVC pipe. They did not set the pump as deep as it was originally. I believe it was at 250’ now its 218’. So now we have proper pressure/volume. But now we have very black water. We ran the pump out for 2.5days straight. It improved slightly but its still black and it appears to have killed the resin in the softener. This appears to be manganese in biblical proportions. Now I have always found some flecks in the whole house filter but it was never at this level. Can a well change this much that quickly? I will post my water analysis as soon as I get it. From what I see so far I will likely be looking at some type of greensand filter. I have called several larger dealers in our area but I have been rather disappointed in their lack of knowledge and just telling me their system will work period. As an example they could not tell me what the capacity in ppm their system could handle or any other technical details. As a mechanical designer I deal in the details and specifications of products. At the moment I am just looking for any thoughts or insight on this and I will know more in a couple days.
Before you buy anything, including having a driller come out. You need a water test for iron, manganese, hardness and pH at least.
From my experience with high manganese, it usually does not cause black water, it causes black staining where water is allowed to dry on a surface.
IMO they shouldn't have raised the pump, why did they do that?
Is there or has there been an odor to the water?
Were you running the dirty water through the softener when you ran the well off? If so, start a regeneration and when it starts the backwash, unplug it for 15 minutes and then plug it in and let it finish the regeneration, then see how the water is. By pass the softener to get a comparison of the raw water and softened water.
Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.