When it comes to learning about well water systems, you can never know too much. It is important, as a homeowner, to empower yourself with knowledge. Here, you can learn about the systems and specifications of equipment on your property. Whether you already own a well water system or you’re transitioning into a new model of providing water for you and your family, everyone can stand to learn a little more.
This is especially true for those who are looking to move onto a property with a well water system. There is a lot to know. However, these are some of the quickest and most important things to find out about any well you own.
Is the Well Clear of Septic Systems?
Rural homes with well water systems almost invariably have a septic tank attached to their home. The position of the well can make a massive difference in the safety of the water it provides. Wells that are placed downhill from a septic tank or livestock runoff area are at serious risk for contamination and may put you and your family at risk.
Septic tanks are designed to collect and process waste before releasing the wastewater into drainage fields. These fields can be a massive source of contamination, so wells are to be kept at least 50 feet apart in the event of a well with a watertight casing or a 100 or more if the case is not watertight. This also applies to fuel storage, roads, and lakes or streams.
Is the Water Safe?
Well water is frequently the safest and cleanest water a homeowner can have – When it is properly maintained. Therefore, you must have the well water tested for possible contamination before consuming it. Asking the current owner of the home if you can see the results of previous quality tests is one of the best ways you can determine the kind of safety you can affect.
Look for pH, mineral and bacteria saturation, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and turbidity. If you already have a well and are now the one who needs to test the water, you should contact the county health department and see if they are able to help you test for bacteria and nitrates. If they aren’t, visit the EPA drinking water and wastewater laboratory network website to find a state-certified lab. You can then determine what, if any, action needs to be taken to secure the water on your property.
Will it Meet Your Needs?
It is important to know if a well will meet you and your family’s needs. Well water systems typically have pressure tanks and storage capacities that must be checked to see if they will meet your family’s peak water requirements. This is especially important to know when it comes to making sure you have the right amount of disinfectant material. If you need to figure this out yourself, you can find the well’s storage capacity by finding the depth of the well and the well’s radius – Which is half of its diameter. This means the distance from the edge of the well to its center. You can then input the numbers into this formula to find the storage volume:
Volume = π x radius² x depth
When calculating π, you can substitute the shorthand 3.14.
These are the three largest concerns you should have when moving onto a property with a well water system. They are so important that you should contact professionals to get help if there is any vagueness. You need to understand the exact conditions and requirements of both your family and the well water system on your property.