Found a well and would like to use it.

Old 05-11-11, 05:29 PM
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Found a well and would like to use it.

1: submersible pump or jet pump. none at the moment
2: age of well if known. No idea, however the house was built in 1963 and I beleive the well is from teh original farm house in the area, early 1900's.
3: depth of well if known. Unknown at this time. I need to get some string and take a measurement.
4: diameter of well if known. The comcrete slab on top of the well has a 4" diameter pipe that goes about 12" down and ends, then the well opens up in size to ?
5: voltage of pump if known. There is a 110 volt wire that used to feed a light post next to the concrete.
6: brand of pump/controller if known. open to sugesstions.
7: size of tank if known. No tank
8: The more details you can give. The more we can help.

Back ground info.
I purchased the house from the original owners, however this house was built in 1963. I have documents back to when the property was originally settled. I believe my house is near or on the location of the original farmhouse. two years ago while installing a french drain I discovered an old foundation walls, 4" thick. I was 2' down.
I live on the corner lot and this well is on the corner, under a huge Oak tree. I discovered the well on accident. I was in the process of busting up concrete that was under a light post. Seemed odd that there is a 4' square of concrete for a light post. I pulled the light post out of the hole it was in, and knock some dirt down the hole to hear a splash. Dropped a piece of concrete to confirm my discovery. Splash.

So, what I would like to do is use the well for watering the lawn and washing the vehicles. I live in Central Illinois and winter temps easily hit freezing.

Open to suggestions, wells are new to me.
Old 05-11-11, 06:45 PM
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I think you opened a can of worms.

The well was not abandoned properly, or you uncovered a abandoned well. You should absolutly get a licensed well driller to seal it back up. Wells need casings, etc and that one is probably not to code. This is the law.

You may be allowing run off into the water supply, and could possibly do harm.

The Groundwater Protection Act mandates that where an abandoned well is found to contaminate another potable water well, the owner of the abandoned well is responsible for providing a safe and sufficient supply of water to the owner of the well that has been contaminated.
from link below.

I advise you to go through legal channels to confirm.

If you want a well have one properly, and legally installed. Its bad enough our water in the world is polluted. Help the world out and do the right thing.

You can be fined big $$ if the EPA gets involved

For Illinois.
Abandoned Wells 1

Abandoned Wells 2

Mike NJ
Old 05-11-11, 07:57 PM
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You may have also found an old post hole.
Just because it has water in it doesn't mean its a well.
It could also be a marker of some kind.
Have a well co. come out and see what you have if you think it may be a well.

But, if it is a well, it was plugged or caped for some reason, and should be done correctly.
It should be plugged by a licensed well co. A report has to be sent in to the state that the well was plugged and what method was used. This has to be done by a licensed well co. by law.
Old 05-16-11, 07:37 AM
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No offense to folks in business, but I would send a weighted string down the hole before I signed up for a service call. Make it cotton string, so it absorbs water. You can then measure both total distance and water level.

And before I called the local Feds and got caught in a lifelong snare -if in fact it is a well- you may simply consider a portable pump you can rig for garden water only. (buy some simple water testing chemicals to check PH, iron, etc for your general knowledge) Take the pump indoors for the winter and don't brag about it to nosy neighbors.

I do not think it wise to use for washing cars - of any value. Most detailers go to great lengths to use treated water. My extra well spits large volumes of iron and lotsa fine sand .. perhaps due to its limited use. Our birdbath is colored orange but the plants seem to enjoy the drink without the fear of overuse of our primary well.

I would also check to see if the property was a main farmhouse. I lived in a part of northern Wisconsin in the 70's where the county was virtually a Superfund site. Apple orchards used tons of chemicals in the 50's/60's that were really nasty and persistent.

Old 05-16-11, 07:58 AM
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Couldn't this also be an old cistern?
Old 05-17-11, 03:45 PM
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Talked to my wifes uncles and did some research.
Well appears to have been dug in the '50's.
The typical depth for my area is 50'-100'.
It was lined with 24" diameter concrete sections. Uncles even knew the name of the guy who went down in the hole to seat the concrete tubes.
I did drop a practice fishing plug down teh hole. It stopped 6' down, about 2" below the water surface.
So yep, its a well, that has been properly sealed and abandoned.

I going to build a Lighthouse and attach it to the slab and forget about it.

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