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Thread: Well Cap Bolts

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member HWMonkey's Avatar
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    Default Well Cap Bolts

    My well is fully functional, and the few tests I have had over the years show it is in great shape. But, I want to add a hand pump as a backup. To do this, I really need to know the water level to see if a shallow pump will work. I suspect it will. When I purchased the house, someone checked (somewhere) at the county, and it was something like 15 or 20 feet. From the picture, you can probably tell that this uses a jet pump.

    I went to take the well cap off for inspection, and .. the bolts are really rusty. I am notorious for breaking bolts. I suspect these things just have to be turned once or twice (and not removed).

    Do you have any recommendations for loosening these things? If I use oil, will I risk well contamination? Is a propane torch enough, and I am going to risk damaging anything?

    A picture is worth 1,000 words. My well cap is about 3.5 feet below the surface, protected by a metal ring, and covered with a wooden "door" (more like a pallet).
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    Thanks for the suggestions.

  2. #2
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    I think you should leave the well alone for now and consider drilling a new well with a casing that is above grade.

  3. #3
    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    Yeah that casing should be extended above ground. Doesn't look very sanitary. Oil is not good and a torch will melt the gasket. You can probably pull it up without loosening the bolts, which don't have to be loosened much anyway. Going to need a new well seal to put back, or better yet a well cap above a pitless with extended casing.

  4. #4
    In the Trades Texas Wellman's Avatar
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    Valveman I've seen some really, really stuck seals before.

    While you've got the well guys out to fix this mess go ahead and have them install you a submersible pump. A 1/2 HP sub will pump more water than a 1-HP jet ever will.

  5. #5
    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Texas Wellman View Post
    Valveman I've seen some really, really stuck seals before.

    While you've got the well guys out to fix this mess go ahead and have them install you a submersible pump. A 1/2 HP sub will pump more water than a 1-HP jet ever will.
    Your right about that! Just that on the left side of the picture it doesn't look like there is much meat left on the casing. That is why I said it doesn't look sanitary. Might just come right out. Plenty of room for a sub. Sub would make for an easier pitless adapter while extending that casing. Don't want to be polluting your own water.

  6. #6
    DIY Junior Member HWMonkey's Avatar
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    Just to clarify:

    The casing is above ground (the rocks are ground) but below grade. It sits in a 5' circumference pit, down 3.5' from grade. I guess it is a pump house of a sort.

    So, you guys are saying call a well drilling company to see if they can extend the casing and put a seal/cap on it?

    Thanks!!

  7. #7
    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    It is almost impossible to seal a "pit". I would not be happy until the casing is 12" to 18" above grade, and properley sealed with concrete.

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