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Thread: Replacing Well Seal

  1. #16
    DIY Junior Member seprintz's Avatar
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    Also, are you guys saying not to worry about a small leak? As I said, the insulation was soaking wet, and I could feel dampness on the seal.

    Should I just tape some insulation on there and call it a day?

  2. #17
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seprintz View Post
    Where is the preferred location for the check valve?
    IMHO there should not be any checkvalve after the wellhead and before the pressure tank. If there is a topside checkvalve, the one on the pump is less likely to hold and subsequently there can be a vacuum created in the line. This vacuum then creates water hammer and eventually can result in a leak that may then suck contaminated groundwater in.

    Some jurisdictions forbid checkvalves topside while others mandate it. Go figure!

    As craigpump said, you should look for the source of contamination. Not sure anything other than a few ants or spiders are getting in through that vent hole, particularly considering you had it wrapped up with insulation.

  3. #18
    DIY Senior Member Reach4's Avatar
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    I would put a stopper into that hole.

  4. #19
    In the Trades Texas Wellman's Avatar
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    Galv. tanks with air makers have 100% top side check valves and do just fine, I wish you would quit spewing this garbage.

    Most of the failed tests have more to do with the method for retrieving the sample than the water itself. Was the outlet flamed and chlorinated? If not it's almost always a 100% failed test.

    The other thing you can do is drill a small hole in the PVC casing and tap it. Install a street "L" and plug the hole. Use that to pour your chlorine. Be sure to wash the well with water to get the chlorine off the drop pipe and wire.

    Quote Originally Posted by LLigetfa View Post
    IMHO there should not be any checkvalve after the wellhead and before the pressure tank. If there is a topside checkvalve, the one on the pump is less likely to hold and subsequently there can be a vacuum created in the line. This vacuum then creates water hammer and eventually can result in a leak that may then suck contaminated groundwater in.

    Some jurisdictions forbid checkvalves topside while others mandate it. Go figure!

    As craigpump said, you should look for the source of contamination. Not sure anything other than a few ants or spiders are getting in through that vent hole, particularly considering you had it wrapped up with insulation.

  5. #20
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Texas Wellman View Post
    Galv. tanks with air makers have 100% top side check valves and do just fine, I wish you would quit spewing this garbage...
    With air makers is the operative word. They open to let air in so there is no vacuum in the line.

  6. #21
    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    Yeah there is a big difference between “galvanized tanks” and “bladder style tanks” when it comes to check valves.

    The air maker system of the galvanized tank needs an above ground check valve to work properly. The Schrader valve lets air in without causing a vacuum in other parts of the line. The pump starts against an air cushion in the pipe and pumps into a tank with another air cushion, so there is no water hammer.

    A bladder style tank has no air maker system. So an extra check valve causes a vacuum below it and there is no air cushion to start the pump against. Transitioning from a vacuum to positive pressure the second a pump is started also causes tremendous water hammer in the system.

    The old galvanized tank systems require two check valves.

    Two or more check valves in a bladder style tank system will cause problems. It doesn’t usually cause problems right after installation, but it will soon, and at the most inopportune time.

  7. #22
    In the Trades Texas Wellman's Avatar
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    That's not been my experience. Without a doubt almost 100% of all wells here have a topside checkvalve regardless of whether or not it's a bladder tank. Very rarely do we see the bottom check fail, but we are blessed with relatively high water levels.
    Last edited by Texas Wellman; 10-30-2013 at 10:04 AM.

  8. #23
    DIY Junior Member seprintz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Texas Wellman View Post
    Most of the failed tests have more to do with the method for retrieving the sample than the water itself. Was the outlet flamed and chlorinated? If not it's almost always a 100% failed test.
    On test 1 I did not flame the tap, on test 2 I did, both failed.

    The tap was not chlorinated.

  9. #24
    DIY Senior Member Reach4's Avatar
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    Just an amateur observer.... you say the water on the insulation up top in your picture is wet. That sounds good to me. It would seem to mean your leak, if it is a leak, was above ground. While it is not freezing weather, it seem to me that you could locate that leak. Maybe pull some more insulation, Is that fitting at the top of the well threaded? That would seem to me, an amateur, that it would let you replace some pipe up top without disturbing the well. I don't think a small leak would cause contamination.

    Not a leak? Maybe... condensation? rain water?

    Get your wet insulation replaced out before hard freeze weather, if you are in a place that gets hard freezes. I would be thinking of maybe a Styrofoam insulator over the top of the whole wellhead. http://www.farmandfleet.com/products...protector.html may not be big enough.

    Regarding weather to recirc right away after adding chlorine, yes seems to be the obvious answer. Recirc is going to get the chlorine from the water surface to the pump much quicker. The chlorine will get closer to the bottom with recirc than without. Also it lets you measure the chlorine concentration. You can use the tap on the well head until the chlorine gets strong enough to also clean out the pipes.

    I would go for more like 400 ppm or more at the well head to compensate for the deader water under your pump. Maybe spray some strong bleach solution or full strength with something that will wet the top few inches of your casing and cover. I could envision some bent smaller copper tubing in a tight U that would let you spray upward from within the hole. Get your test paper in advance. There are ways to compute how much bleach you will need. I have only used liquid myself, I made a funnel from a gallon plastic bottle, with the bottom cut off, with the neck taped with silicone tape, to some copper tubing to feed the water from the hose back into the hole. Then I could add bleach easily. I rigged a step ladder to hold my improvised funnel above the well.

    I would let your rig circulate for a long time. A day or so seems reasonable in your situation, but that is a wild guess. It took about 3 hours IIRC for my chlorine to come up to good strength in my 4 inch casing with the pump farther down.

    If I tested positive for coliform, I would get 50 or 100 Hach PathoScreen test packets. You put the packet and 100 ml of water into a sterilized bottle, close, and watch for color change from yellow to dark in 24 to 48 hours. Yellow is good. Dark liquid or precipitate is bad. For one time use, a single test including the bottle can be had. That's what I did, but my test was negative. But for repeated tests, buying in bulk seems worthwhile.

    Again, I am just an observer. If I contradict, and I don't think I have, the others on this thread, follow them.

  10. #25
    DIY Junior Member seprintz's Avatar
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    Tried chlorinating the well this afternoon.

    Added 2 cups of 73% available calcium hypochlorite, waited 30 minutes, then started running water, so far, no detectable chlorine at the tap, not even at the spout at the well head.

    What did I do wrong? Water has been running for 10 minutes.

    Any ideas?

    Thanks.

  11. #26
    DIY Junior Member seprintz's Avatar
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    Nevermind, guess I wasn't being patient enough, detecting chlorine now.

  12. #27
    DIY Junior Member seprintz's Avatar
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    Quick question, everybody is saying XXXppm chlorine at the well head, do I need to get the same reading at each tap, toilet, etc?

    Thanks.

  13. #28
    DIY Senior Member craigpump's Avatar
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    Yep, the chlorine must come in contact with EVERY SINGLE faucet, spigot, dishwasher, washing machine, shower head, toilet, ice maker, humidifier, water dispenser, etc etc on both the hot and cold sides. If you have a sprinkler system you should run the chlorine through it as well.

    If you miss just one place, the bacteria will come back..

  14. #29
    DIY Senior Member Reach4's Avatar
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    Also, turn off the pump and let your pressure tank empty. Then turn pump back on so that the tank gets chlorine. Maybe even empty water heater and refill?

    If you get 400 ppm at well head but only 50 or more at at the faucets, that is OK. Do outside faucets too. Let the chlorinated water sit for a while once it fills the pipes. If you only get 100 ppm at the well head, I would go for at least 200 at the well head. Non pro. Better a little overkill than underkill I think.

  15. #30
    DIY Junior Member seprintz's Avatar
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    Thanks for all of the help guys. I have sealed up the electrical wiring, and got a piece of pipe with door screen over the vent hole. Well is chlorinated (pulled through both cold and hot water lines to all fixtures), now, last bit of advice needed:

    Any tips/tricks/how-to on removing all the chlorinated water from the well?

    Thanks again.

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