Dirty Well Water After Rain


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Old 05-24-13, 09:03 AM
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Dirty Well Water After Rain

A couple times in the past 6 months I have had my well water get dirty after a hard rain. I have lived there 5 years and this is the first I have noticed it. After running the water for a bit it clears up.

I called a well service and he stated that I am getting water runoff in my well or water is being stirred up down below and there is nothing I can do about it short of a new well or expensive filtration system. He said when this happens that I should run the water thru my pressure tank until it clears up and then run all water receptacles in house until clear. Then not use water for drinking and cooking for a few days.

Does this all sound correct? Just want to verify.
 
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Old 05-24-13, 10:13 AM
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What kind of well it it? If it's just a dug well then ya I can see that happening.
We have an drilled well and only time it's done that is after an earthquake. Plugged the filter slam up.
A whole house water filter is the way I would go.
 
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Old 05-24-13, 10:48 AM
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I have had this happen to me since moving into this house (a year and change ago). I'm on a drilled well.
I'm still working out a solution as a 5 micron didn't keep enough out to save my carbon filter before it clogged solid.
Best option I have so far is a spin down filter with manual backwash. Won't solve the discoloration, but will save my filters.
 
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Old 05-24-13, 06:36 PM
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hi nrowles-

well service and he stated that I am getting water runoff in my well

Iím a city guy but I live with a with a private well system now. Iím working on a problem now where I get coliform in my well, which if I understand could easily be caused by ground water filling my well-pit (which in fact I see) and thus getting down into the well. This will have to be corrected by raising the well head above ground and using a pitless adapter.

If your well head is above ground, and is on higher ground, rain water should drain away from your wellhead and you should not be getting muddy ground water down into your well. At least thatís my understanding.

My understanding is that if ground water is getting down into your well, your well is not constructed properly and that presents a health hazard. Because even though most coliform wonít hurt most of us, there may be other more toxic things that can transfer from the ground down into the well if the well is not constructed properly.

Anyway, when your well service says "water runoff" I think they should explain what they mean by that. If it has nothing to do with ground water getting into the well because of improper construction then maybe filtration would in fact be appropriate. But Iím no expert for sure and maybe water runoff means something else!

(BTW Ė I just installed an AN Filter myself to correct low ph and as a byproduct it really cleans up a tremendous amount of sediment. I canít believe how much cleaner the water is!)

Good luck!
 
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Old 05-25-13, 05:12 AM
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My well head is above ground and I do have both a whole house filter and UV light that was in the house when I moved here. I'm really not worried about the discoloration because that clears up rather quickly. It's the possible threat of contamination that I'm worried about.
 
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Old 05-25-13, 11:18 AM
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hi rnowles Ė

I also have a UV filter that was in the house when I bought it. I didnít replace the bulb regularly and I let the quartz sleeve inside get so dirty that the filter couldnít possibly be effective. Fixed all that, got on top of things, and Iím going through a test period now to see if the UV filter takes care of the coliform problem.

But it seems to me the UV filter really is masking a problem? In my case I can see the my whole well pit fill up with water so I can easily see why ground water gets down into the well and why someone installed a UV filter in the house. Itís just fixing a symptom.

As I said Iím no expert, but if someone installed a UV filter in your house it must have been because of a recurring germ problem. That might certainly mean that there is a problem with the construction of your well (maybe just minor). I guess the good news is that all the govt. stuff I read says a UV filter is an acceptable method to handle the germ problem.

I think even though your wellhead is above ground it is possible for ground water to seep down the sides of or into the well casing if it isnít sealed properly or doesnít stick far enough above ground, etc.

Wait -
LOL I just assumed yours is a drilled well with a well casing, etc.

Anyway, as far as I understand you want as much sediment out of the water as possible for the UV filter to do its job properly, i.e., sediment can block the UV rays thus protecting the germs. So the UV filter should be last in you chain of filters.

Maybe there is an explanation of why you would get muddy water in the well on a hard rain, that doesnít involve a problem with the well construction itself, and maybe there is also an explanation for germs getting into the well that also doesnít involve faulty well construction. But seems to me the well guys should be able shed some light on that. I have heard of something called ďfractured rockĒ where the aquifer supplying the water doesnít filter the water very well. Donít know much about it.

I donít remember hearing that you normally have to have a new well drilled for these problems, so maybe that well service is being over aggressive? For example, I think sometimes they can just put some new stuff down the sides of the well casing, etc.

Maybe you should get a water test to see if you have any germs in your drinking water now. Not that expensive. Maybe you could get at least two well guys to look at the well to see if anything at the top of the well jumps out at them in terms of allowing groundwater to enter the well? Hopefully it would just be a minor fix.
 
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Old 05-25-13, 11:45 AM
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Up here, basic water tests for e-coli and coliform are free..
It's important that the ground slopes away from your well head, I had a pal who's land sloped toward his wellhead, and in the spring he ended up with all the frozen horse pee (2 horses) thawing and flowing down around the wellhead and down into the well... yum !
I read an article once where it mentioned that home-sized UV filters typically dont have enough exposure time to allow the UV light to kill off a high enough % of bacteria. The longer the exposure, the more bugs you kill.

If I suspected ground water into my well, the first thing I would do is 'shock' it with bleach. Google for process..
 
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Old 05-25-13, 01:46 PM
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...in the spring he ended up with all the frozen horse pee (2 horses) thawing and flowing down around the wellhead and down into the well... yum !
OK Dave how is that so much different from Moosehead Beer?
LOL-LOL-LOL (I get silly on Sat. afternoon after a few!)Just kidding. I actually like Moosehead (I know Öitís from Nova Scotia).

(Spent lots of really good time working/pleasure over the years in Canada: Ottawa Ontario, Barrie Ontario, Truro Nova Scotia, Red Deer Alberta, Kitchener Ontario, etc. could go on!)

Up here, basic water tests for e-coli and coliform are free..
That sounds like a really good idea. Maybe we will have that someday.

I read an article once where it mentioned that home-sized UV filters typically dont have enough exposure time to allow the UV light to kill off a high enough % of bacteria. The longer the exposure, the more bugs you kill.
Thatís what Iím afraid of. I know they size the UV filters based on the gpm flow from the pump, but do they really work? My pump is a 7gal/min pump and my UV filter is a 7 gal/min UV filter. Sounds way to close to me. Iíll find out from the water test results if itís good enough. Yet all of this stuff is so variable?

What if you are OK but next week your max gals/min from the pump through the house at some point hits a max that you never hit before or havenít hit for a long time? Then do the germs get through? Do they then set up house in your piping system? Do they die out quickly if the colony isnít replenished because the UV filter kills anything new passing through? Or is that it. If some get through then do you need to chlorinate your piping or they are there forever?

Seems awfully complicated to me.

As you reference- home-sized UV filters may just not do it.

Maybe nrowles doesnít have a germ problem and someone just felt safer by placing a UV filter on the well system? Hopefully.
 
 

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