New Well w/ Pump & In-Well Pressure Tank spews Silt & Iron

How do we get silt and iron out of new well while ling in Airstream trailer on our property?

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Geri

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July 4th, 2021
We just had our new well re-dug to go deeper because at 140 ft with 20 gpm we were seeing very heavy silt in water and getting worse. Our well driller decided to drill deeper. We went another 99 feet on July 1st. We went thru silt, rock/pebbles, 5 layers of clay, wood, gravel and finally clay. He stopped at 239 feet. The static water depth was at 102 feet. We have a Franklin pump and stainless steel pressure tank inside the well casing attached to PVC. At this new depth they developed the well for 2 hours. It was looking more promising of clear water. They told us to run it and take samples until it would clear up. The first couple of samples were OK then after 2 days we are getting silt again! The smell of the water is distinctly iron and some slight sulfur smell, but mostly iron.

But here is the big issue. We are living in a 30ft Airstream trailer while we wait to build our house. We are currently getting water from the state park in a 55 gallon barrel that we ferry back and for every other day. We have to use our well during winter months too. Our standpipe from the well is connected to a pitless adapter about 10 feet down. The standpipe is about 50 feet away from our Airstream.
How do we further develop the well ourselves like leaving it running full blast for 20+ hours or in 2 hour increments and take samples?
How do we get the iron smell out? What filters do we use and how do we winterize all of this while living in the Airstream trailer until Christmas 2021 when our house will be finished? HELP PLEASE. Thanks, geri
 

Reach4

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How do we get the iron smell out? What filters do we use
You will need to get your water tested to decide. For iron and smells, a backwashing iron+ filter may be called for. If your iron is low enough, then a softener may deal with that.

Iron is not so much a smell as a taste and a discoloration.
 

Bannerman

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To develop a well and pump out as much sediment as possible, the pipe from the well should be disconnected as close to the well as possible so as to minimize restrictions to allow the pump to move water at the highest flow rate possible. Sometimes, it can require several days of pumping 24-hrs/day to develop and clear a well.

You can allow the pump to run continuously, but if there is concern of pumping faster than the well's recovery rate, then the run time may need to be reduced into segments which are then repeated over a longer time period. Alternately to provide protection, a CSV Cycle Sensor maybe utilized to stop the pump when there is insufficient water remaining, and restart the pump after allowing sufficient recovery time which you program.

https://cyclestopvalves.com/pages/cycle-sensor-pump-monitor
 
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Valveman

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I would be calling the well driller. He may have to blow or bail it out. Is your pump cycling on and off or do you have some other kind of control utilizing a little pressure tank?
 

Geri

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To develop a well and pump out as much sediment as possible, the pipe from the well should be disconnected as close to the well as possible so as to minimize restrictions to allow the pump to move water at the highest flow rate possible. Sometimes, it can require several days of pumping 24-hrs/day to develop and clear a well.

You can allow the pump to run continuously, but if there is concern of pumping faster than the well's recovery rate, then the run time may need to be reduced into segments which are then repeated over a longer time period. Alternately to provide protection, a CSV Cycle Sensor maybe utilized to stop the pump when there is insufficient water remaining, and restart the pump after allowing sufficient recovery time which you program.

https://cyclestopvalves.com/pages/cycle-sensor-pump-monitor
To develop a well and pump out as much sediment as possible, the pipe from the well should be disconnected as close to the well as possible so as to minimize restrictions to allow the pump to move water at the highest flow rate possible. Sometimes, it can require several days of pumping 24-hrs/day to develop and clear a well.

You can allow the pump to run continuously, but if there is concern of pumping faster than the well's recovery rate, then the run time may need to be reduced into segments which are then repeated over a longer time period. Alternately to provide protection, a CSV Cycle Sensor maybe utilized to stop the pump when there is insufficient water remaining, and restart the pump after allowing sufficient recovery time which you program.

https://cyclestopvalves.com/pages/cycle-sensor-pump-monitor
Bannerman,
Thank you for your response.

We have a Franklin Electric SubDrive that is connected to the well via wiring. If the device senses that there is low or no water to pump it will immediately shut off and give an F1 code on the SubDrive. I have an app on my phone that I can enable via Bluetooth. As for the well I have a hose connected directly to the spigot. The spigot is about 18 inches from the well on a Standpipe that is connected to a pitless adapter about 10 feet down the metal casing.

We ran it for 12 hours with the spigot full on. Gray Silt came out with the water. It cut off after 12 hours and gave an F1 code on the SubDrive unit. We waited overnight and turned it on in the morning. This time it was worse. Extremely silty. I contacted out Well Dilling company and they were shocked as I was. They will likely call me in the morning. We met our neighbor to the north of us and they had a similar problem and they had to drill 270+ feet to get clear water. Very disheartening.
 

Geri

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I would be calling the well driller. He may have to blow or bail it out. Is your pump cycling on and off or do you have some other kind of control utilizing a little pressure tank?

Valveman,
Thank you. We do have a control called a Franklin Electric SubDrive. The pressure tank is a stainless steel in-well 5-gallon tubular tank. What does blow or bail it out mean?

I sent an email to the well driller and they are going to call me back. I hope they have some answers too.
 

Valveman

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Valveman,
Thank you. We do have a control called a Franklin Electric SubDrive. The pressure tank is a stainless steel in-well 5-gallon tubular tank. What does blow or bail it out mean?

I sent an email to the well driller and they are going to call me back. I hope they have some answers too.

You were sold the most expensive and least dependable or long lasting pump and control available. I hope he is better at fixing well problems than he is at picking pumps and controls. Does the Subdrive use the "switch" or the "transducer"? The switch could be bouncing the pump on and off quickly enough to stir up the sediment in the well. https://cyclestopvalves.com/pages/vfd-repair-kit
 

Bannerman

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A hose spigot is typically 1/2" or possibly 3/4" feeding a 5/8" garden hose. As the drop pipe from the pump is typically 1" or 1.25", the pump will not be lifting water at the maximum flow rate possible. Unless the flow rate is maximized, it will be difficult to properly develop the well.

When the water within the well is lowered by pumping or other method, then water will flow faster into the well from the surrounding soil. That faster flow will cause additional silt and debris to be carried in which will be why the amount of silt was worse after pumping for a long time. In developing the well, you are attempting to cause the loose silt from the surrounding soil to enter, where it maybe pumped out to the surface. Once there is little silt continuing to enter, the water will be more likely to remain clear, particularly when usual flow requirements will likely be significantly lower, causing the water level to not be lowered as much as occuring during development.

Water can only be lifted vertically by suction approx 24' at sea level. To clear debris from a deep well, it then can't be vaccumed out.

Bailing is one method to remove debis from the bottom. Think of repeatedly lowering a scoop to pull up debris.

Another method is to lower a high volume air hose into the accumulation at the bottom, and using a large volume of compressed air to blow the debris and water up the casing and out from the well.
 
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LLigetfa

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We went thru silt, rock/pebbles, 5 layers of clay, wood, gravel and finally clay. He stopped at 239 feet.
What material is under that last layer of clay? That material may act as a natural filter but needs to be developed. Clay/fines might continue to get motivated if that material is not suitable as a filter. The more sediment is removed from that material, the greater the circumference of the "filter" which reduces the speed of water flow at the periphery to not motivate clay/fines.

Developing involves drawing water at a faster rate to motivate the fines. Later, when the well is in production, the rate of draw should be slower so as to not motivate. This of course depends on how you use the water.
 
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