Well pumping sand and silt: casing collapse?


Old 08-18-16, 04:16 PM
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Lightbulb Well pumping sand and silt: casing collapse?

After a few days of rain, my well suddenly began pumping a lot of sand and silt. It now completely clogs the sediment filter AND regular 30-micron filter after about 5 to 10 gallons of usage.

After doing some research online, I got brave and raised the pump up 4 feet hoping this would bring it above a pile of collapsed dirt. It didn't help at all.

The well is 280 feet deep. The 220 volt stainless pump is held by a 1.5 inch black poly pipe and tied to a nylon rope. I don't know the pump make/model. There is a 90-degree connector about 7 feet below ground level that heads off towards the house. The pressure switch is set to 40 on/60 off.

I'm not sure where to go from here.

What would be the best course of action from this point?
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Old 08-18-16, 05:26 PM
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I would contact a well company. They can put a camera down the hole to see if your casing has rusted through, broken or is not deep enough. If that's the cause then they can sleeve it.

If you don't have a casing problem there are sand screens that get installed over the pump. The screen has sharp edges so the sand doesn't get inside and trapped. When running the screen may become clogged or partially clogged but when the pump turns off most of the sand falls back into the well.
Old 08-23-16, 01:13 PM
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Do you have any idea how deep your pump is? If your water static level in well is high (near surface), I'd bring pump even higher (4ft is not enough if pump is near bottom). The fact you get this issue after a heavy rain does suggest you have a casing issue as Pilot Dane suggested or direct surface runoff into well (runoff entering well head?).

Do you know what lies below? Is it a sand/clay/silt hole? Is the casing metal?
Luckily, I am in rock all the way down, with a bit of loose Gabbro rock (no biggie).
After chatting with driller, he has locations where he has to line well all the way to bottom (sand bar islands).

If you have a cellphone with earbuds, you can download a sonar app...they are not perfect, but can give you a sense of how deep everything is...even the pump.

Before spending money on pros, I'd be inclined to raise pump 20ft if I have a high static level, then flush well (remove filters and pipe it out into yard if you have the ability to do so (I wouldn't pump it through house system). A half hour of pumping ought to clear out water (occasionally pumping into a 5 gallon pail to see what settles)...if it doesn't, or gets worse, you'll probably have to line well with a pvc sand sleeve or get casing fixed or replaced. It is a very optional exercise, as pumping too much sand through pump will ruin impellers.

Are you in any Karst topography? Any sinkholes or depressions form around well head?

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