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Thread: New well drilled, need suggestions on finishing

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member whipsaw's Avatar
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    Default New well drilled, need suggestions on finishing

    Hello all. I've been lurking around this forum as I spent the last several months getting a well permit and finally having a well drilled on my 4 acres. I am really stoked as it was first estimated at 15 gpm upon completion, but after running a test pump it put out a solid 25 gpm for 2 hours straight with no drawdown. The well guy thinks it could go over 30. I hit the motherload! Wells in the area are mostly around 10gpm, some 5gpm, and many are deeper. Mine is 209 feet. Of course, I still need to see how the water samples turn out before I really celebrate, but it is very clear water with no sand. I know it may sound silly for a guy to get so excited about something like this, but I bought my land and paid for my well with hard-earned cash. I am borrowing nothing and have been saving for years for this.

    Anyway, the decision now is what pump to go with, and what kind of storage I want. The pump guy seems to think I should go with a 1 hp 15gpm max pump, and have 1000 gallons in storage along with a pressure tank. This will allow for a less expensive pump, cheaper wiring, lower cost power bill, prevent the pump from cycling a lot, and supply great storage for peak use in the summer for irrigation needs, etc. The other option is a 2hp pump, and less storage. To be honest I am having a hard time even anticipating what I will use since I will be growing a lot of plants and things. Would I be better off going with the bigger, more expensive pump, so I can utilize the full capacity of the well if needed? I'd like to hear the thoughts of people who have had to make these decisions. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    A 1000 gallon storage tank is not going to last very long when irrigating. At 15 GPM it will only last for about and hour. Your real storage is in the well. If it will make 15 or 25 GPM indefinitely, then you don’t need a storage tank.

    In the past over-sizing a well pump was not a good idea, because it would cycle on/off too much when using smaller amounts of water. However, a Cycle Stop Valve will let you install as large a pump as you want or need, and will make it work like a small pump when a little water is all you are using. And because the Cycle Stop Valve stops the cycling and makes the pump produce exactly the right amount all the time, a 4.5 gallon pressure tank is all you will need.

    Congratulations on the good well. Now put in a pump system with a CSV so you can utilize the well water at any rate for any length of time you want.

  3. #3
    In the Trades Boycedrilling's Avatar
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    Yes it's great news that you have a well that will produce plenty of water.

    Now for the bad news that your driller SHOULD have informed you. Just because the water is there, does mean you have the right to use all you want. In Washington state, a domestic well is exempt form needing a water right from the state if you use less than 5000 gallons per day, and irrigate less than one-half acre. It's even less in some areas. If your in upper kittitas county, you are limited to 300 gallons per day, indoor use only, and you'll have to purchase that right from a private water bank at a cost of about $7500.

    You mentioned using a reservoir. Do you have a hill to put it on so you have water pressure from the reservoir? Other wise you'll need a second pump to pump and pressurize the water coming back out of the reservoir.

  4. #4
    DIY Junior Member whipsaw's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies. I actually found a post about the CSV, valveman, and it seems a much cheaper system to go with rather than expensive tanks and booster pumps and all the things this pump guy is recommending. I'd rather go with the more expensive pump and draw straight from the well. I don't like drinking out of a plastic container anyway, which is what the reservoirs are made of. I guess the only downside is I'll wear that pump out quicker, and I have to go with heavier gauge wire. If I recall correctly, the water level was sitting at 175.8 when we pulled the cap off yesterday. With the well bottomed out at 209, there's not a lot of storage in the well.

    I am aware of the laws, Boycedrilling. I don't plan on violating them, but I also appreciate a higher flow rate so that I can throw a lot of water in a short period of time, such as watering the garden on a hot summer's day in a narrow time frame, rather than having to try to manage it better. It just makes things a little easier. I'm sure this nanny state will be placing a meter on all wells before long. My motto is to not even tell them anything I am doing unless absolutely necessary. They wanted to charge me a permit fee to set a 20' storage container on the property for tool storage. They want to charge me a permit fee to put up a 3 bar gate across the driveway. The list is endless.

  5. #5
    DIY Senior Member craigpump's Avatar
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    A private water bank? Sounds like something Al Gore would come up with to complement carbon tax fees


    Are you telling me that you have to install a water meter so that the local government can monitor your water usage and that in order to use more than a predetermined amount you have to buy the rights?

    And I thought the regs in Ct were bad...

  6. #6
    DIY Junior Member akcooper9's Avatar
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    In the DFW area of Texas if your well produces over 25 gpm you have to put a meter on it. Im sure Valveman can give the details but the way I understand it was they wanted to get more money from the oil companys who are using water to fracking.

  7. #7
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Water is a shared resource and may not be limitless. When I put in my 60 foot deep well in '98, my neighbor complained that his static level dropped 4 feet. All we were doing at the time was continuously pumping at 5 GPM to satisfy the banker and the requirement on the building permit.

    The neighbor had only a shallow well/pump at the time. Most of my neighbors draw from the same aquifer, that being water trapped in a layer of gravel between clay and bedrock.

    My neighbor later complained that he had spent $15,000 to put in a new well. They had to drill 300 feet into bedrock and then frac to get enough GPM.

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    DIY Senior Member craigpump's Avatar
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    Anyone who has been in this business for more than a week has heard stories about "neighbors stealing my water".

    LL, I question your neighbors claim, if after your yield test his static level didnt come back to his claimed level, the well probably had an issue before your test.

  9. #9
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by craigpump View Post
    LL, I question your neighbors claim...
    It must have recovered as it was a few years later that his new well was drilled. I contended that his 30 foot deep well was marginal all along. I don't know if he stopped at the bedrock or not.

    Decades ago, my father's shallow well dried up when the neighbor decided to sell sand for a roads project. While my father had a valid claim, he still had no recourse but to drill a new well at his own expense. It was a farm and so there was need for a lot of water. Our shallow well was already as deep as the sand layer was.

    He and I drilled down 120 feet through clay by hand, using the wash-down method. I had to haul water in 45 gallon drums from a creek a half mile away.

  10. #10
    DIY Junior Member whipsaw's Avatar
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    Several well drillers in my area said there's no worry of the well going dry. The only question is finding the water and how much it is going to cost to do so. Wells are very expensive here. I read posts of people getting a well drilled for under $5k and I think of how nice that must be. This well is closer to $20k when all is said and done.

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    DIY Junior Member whipsaw's Avatar
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    It's been a while but I am finally to the point where I am going to finish the well. I'm going with a Franklin 2 hp pump, a 6.6 gallon constant pressure tank, and a Pentek PID20 controller. I expressed concern over equipment failure, and he said he'd warranty the controller for 5 years. I really like the guy and he's been in the business forever. He actually helped me out BIGTIME with my well, and I know he makes a chunk of change on the equipment, but that's ok. I figure if this thing craps the bed before 5 years, then I get a new one and I will plan on going with a CSV after the warranty is up.

  13. #13
    In the Trades Texas Wellman's Avatar
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    Wait a minute, I'll go get the popcorn.

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    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    Just get the small popcorn TW. Whipsaw already knows what he is stepping in, and that he will eventually need a CSV to have a dependable water system. I actually love it when an installer puts in a VFD for someone. It gets people use to constant pressure and using a small tank. All we have been doing for 21 years is replacing VFD’s with CSV’s. So any VFD installation just makes a future CSV customer.

    The installer is the one who will have to learn a lesson. He shouldn’t offer a 5 year warranty on a system that has only been in existence for about 2 years? The new Pentair “drive” won’t be any better or last any longer than the last Pentair “drive”, which is already off the market. Let him get about 50 or 100 of those out in the field before they start dying prematurely. Then he will panic like all the other installers that call me. One installer had put in over a thousand of a different brand of drive before they started failing. He was just sick when he called me. Warranting all those drives was going to put him out of business. At the very least he was going to have a thousand mad customers.

    The pump company didn’t care that he was going to lose his business. They have already gotten as much money from those thousand customers as they would normally get in 30 years from normal, long lasting pump equipment. When the warranty is up, they will hang the pump installer out to dry. The pump installer will have to explain to his customers that the warranty is expired and they will have to pay again. If the installer loses the customers, a new pump man will get the business. Either way the pump manufacturer just gets to sell more equipment without taking any of the blame.

  15. #15
    DIY Junior Member whipsaw's Avatar
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    EDIT:

    I called the pump guy and am going with the CSV. Part of the difficulty in all of this is that this is my first well, and yet I am trying to tell a veteran HOW I want him to set up my well. I am the kind of person who likes to research everything I do, hence the reason I am here, but it's not always well received by professionals. I don't actually have the expertise or equipment to do this myself, but just read voraciously to try to educate myself. Anyway, he said he'll pick up a CSV. I don't know what kind he will get. I'd rather not micromanage this guy to death. I do like him.

    One thing I wanted to mention on the warranty for the controller that I will no longer be using- he wasn't warrantying it personally, the supply house was. He's been doing business with them for over 30 years, and he said they have never refused him. They are personal friends. I believe him. Alas, he said it's up to me and he'll do what I want. The guy is actually really sharp.
    Last edited by whipsaw; 02-25-2014 at 11:15 PM. Reason: add information

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