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Thread: Evaluate My Well(s)

  1. #1
    DIY Member Flipperman2a2w's Avatar
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    Default Evaluate My Well(s)

    I am new to the forum and fairly new to home ownership. I grew up on city water, so this is the first time I have ever used a well. I wanted to post a few photos here to see if I could get some general feedback on my system.

    As I understand it, the original owner had issues with the first well that was drilled. The well didn't seal properly, and they were getting "red water" with very poor flow. I believe this first well was less than a hundred feet deep.

    A second well (which we currently use) was then drilled about 20 feet away from the first one a little higher up the hillside (we live in a mountain community). The second well is 245 feet deep with a casing depth of 92 feet. The original owner just left the pressure tank next to the old well, and the plumbing/electric was run to the new well.

    Shortly after moving in, the very cheap/basic iron filter in our garage quickly failed. I also had to replace the 3 year old faucet on the kitchen sink. When I pulled it out, the copper tubing was corroded green and had started some pin hole leaks. I started to investigate and had a lab perform a water test.

    As it turns out, our iron is through the roof (higher than 15ppm, which is the maximum the lab's equipment could test). The water is also acidic, with a pH of 5.6. The water runs perfectly clear out of the faucet, but it just has a metallic "iron" flavor. When I tested the flow rate, it was in the middle of the summer (and a fairly bad drought) and I got about 3gpm. The well tag that the driller put on the well says that the yield is 20gpm. We have a 10gpm Berkeley pump. I hope the huge difference in flow was due to the drought, but I do understand that flow can easily change for any number of reasons.

    My wife and I currently use this small 2 bedroom property as a vacation home and are only there about 5 weeks out of the year. We have (fingers crossed) never had an issue with running out of water or anything of that nature. I've been working with some of the water treatment companies to figure out how to make our water better (I say "better," as I have been told that it will always be far from pure).

    I was just wondering if anyone would be willing to take a few moments and give me a basic evaluation or offer up any pertinent information on my situation. Part of me feels like the original owner should have disclosed more about the well situation, but I didn't know enough to ask (and the home inspector didn't catch it). In any case, it looks like I'm going to be tied to this property for some time. We currently think of it as our retirement home, even though my wife and I are only in our 30s. Any responses and information/advice would be tremendously appreciated.

    P.S. Why the heck did they do that crazy "loop" with the PVC pipe?
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  2. #2
    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    Except for that crazy loop, everything above ground looks pretty good. Much of those systems is underground. You say 10 GPM pump, so I think the 3 GPM test you did was just to see how much that faucet lets out. You need to run several faucets or take the union loose at the well head to see how much the pump and/or well will make. Looks like a two wire pump, so it has to be 1.5 HP or smaller. Should be fine, especially for a weekend place.

  3. #3
    In the trades WellWaterProducts's Avatar
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    It's hard to tell if there are wire connectors on the pressure switch. Being from a cold climate, it looks odd to me that it's outside on the ground but my only real critique there is that it was not elevated on blocks which would have accommodated a drain valve on the tank. The loop is just because someone didn't want to move the tank on the repiping. I'm not certain what the standards are in your area, but it may be worthwhile to consider sealing off the old well.
    ----
    Chris Kofer
    h2oguy.com




  4. #4
    DIY Member Flipperman2a2w's Avatar
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    Thanks so much for the replies! I wish the pressure tank was inside of our garage or under the house. . . I believe most (if not all) of the pressure tanks in our community are outdoors near the wellhead. I put a fairly strong light under the mock rock cover during the winter to keep the tank from freezing. On the plus side, I assume having the pressure tank up on the hillside (above the house) gives us a little more water pressure?

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