If you’re heading into a home that has its own residential water well or are thinking about getting your own private water well installed on your property, arming yourself with knowledge is a great way to start. The more you know about how wells work, the better equipped you’ll be to take on this new responsibility. The first step to understanding well is learning about their key components.

Knowing more about wells also helps you understand how to look after them and when you need to call in the experts too. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the various key components that make up a typical residential water well system.

The Well Pump

By far one of the most important elements of any well system, the well pump is what works to suck the water up from out of the ground and then send it on its way into the pipes of your home. You can find water pumps in various forms, including centrifugal pumps, jet pumps, and submersible pumps.

The Well Casing

The casing of a well is basically its body. It’s the long, tube-like structure that forms the shape and structure of the well, providing the pathway for the water to travel up. It keeps the water safe from dirt, sediment, and contaminants. The materials used to make well casings are usually either plastic or steel (carbon or stainless), measuring up at around 5 inches in diameter. It’s interesting to note that some states will actually impose limits on the minimum length of residential well casings.

The Well Cap

Definitely one of the most important features of your residential well, the well cap is what sits on top of the well casing and creates a water-tight seal, effectively blocking things like bugs, bacteria, and dirt from falling down into the well. Your water supply is at risk if there is something wrong with your well cap. The most common issues are cracking or improper fitting.

The Pressure Tank

The pressure tank is located inside your home, but it’s still connected to the wall and plays a vital role in terms of the water you use each day. Water flows into this tank from the well, which is able to automatically monitor pressure levels and switch the pump on/off as required.

The Well Screen

The screen of a residential well is located at the later part of the casing. It almost works like a strainer in order to prevent bits of dirt, rock, sand, and other sediment from getting into the well. Homeowners have a few options when it comes to well screens: perforated, slotted, and continuous.

The Pitless Adapter

Designed back in the 1950s and still in use today, the pitless adapter works to connect the drop pipe in the wall with the main water pipe leading up to your home. It’s a small but significant part of modern wells, cutting down the risk of contaminants getting into the well and removing the risk of frost affecting your water lines too.