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muddy mess

05/27/2010 9:33 PM

I have a well that is about 23 years old and I have NEVER had a problem with it until lately. I live in the North Carolina mountains and my well is 175 feet deep. Lately when I use a lot of water like when I do laundry, the second or third load the water gets dingy a red clay colored. When I pour it into a glass nothing settles to the bottom of the glass. I hooked a waterhose up to the top of the well and the water was very clear but in the house the water is still dingy. Could I have a hole in the waterline somewhere between the well and the house. The water eventually clears up but it takes several days and it makes my laundry dingy and stains the toilet bowl. Somebody please help

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#1

Re: muddy mess

05/27/2010 10:26 PM

Sounds similar to a situation I had; well sampled good but mud in the house tap. Turned out tree roots had mangled the line between the two.

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#4
In reply to #1

Re: muddy mess

05/28/2010 8:16 AM

Thanks for your comment it makes me feel so much better. There are several trees around waterline. Well let's start digging. Thanks!

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#5
In reply to #4

Re: muddy mess

05/28/2010 8:43 AM

Before you start digging how about checking to see if it is leaking. Turn the main water supply off in the house. Let the system pressure up and see how fast the pressure bleeds off. Also have you changed laundry detergents just a thought may be some reaction to minerals in your well water that didn't happen with the other product.

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#35
In reply to #1

Re: muddy mess

05/30/2010 9:52 PM

This if thank everyone for the help. I finally got my water problem fixed. There was a leak in the water line, so I put a new water line, and when I turned the water back on I noticed that the pump kept kicking on and off, so I pulled the pump and the check valve was stuck. Since the pump was 23 years I went ahead and replaced the pump. Water is clear now so I am going to do laundry tomorrow and see how it goes. Thanks again for everyones help!!!

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#36
In reply to #35

Re: muddy mess

05/31/2010 1:52 AM

Did I hear the word 'Check Valve'? (POST 3) Come on guys, give it the GA it deserves?

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#2

Re: muddy mess

05/27/2010 10:59 PM

Well slim, I can see your problem right from where I sit up here in Yankee country. Your problem is termites. Yep, them little buggers have been chewing up the Appalachian chain of forests only for the last four hundred years. Them little varmints smuggled themselves in the beams of the ship they dismantled to build the Jamestown settlement. Prior to that America didn't have them pesky critters. You see the mineral them critters poop out is such a fine grain that on average this silt sinks slowly through the soil at a rate of about 7.52 inches a year. Now some very wet years that migration rate was faster and some dry years it was slower but 7.52 inches a year is a reasonable average. With a 175 foot deep well your just about due for this grit to start appearing in your water.

Now you might consider having a new well drilled, or extending this well to a greater depth but you'll just be delaying the inevitable. This will mean you'll actually have to talk a local hydrologist about doing this work on your land. He'll try to talk you into thinking that one of the screens on your well head has been damaged, or that your pipes maybe crumbling. But don't you believe his long winded stories about the years he's worked in your area, or the degrees he's obtained to be qualified to do his licensed job. He's only interested in lining his pockets at your expense.

I'll tell you what to do that's cheap. All you got to do is add a short section of two inch diameter piping on the output of your well. In that pipe you put a sock in it. That's right just put a sock in it. The sock will filter out all of that annoying poop. How do you think that that phrase became a cliche?

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#6
In reply to #2

Re: muddy mess

05/28/2010 2:07 PM

Wow, I come up with the stupidest answer I could think of as a joke and to blow off some steam and I don't get one little peep of ridicule or recognition of it being a joke. Yet on other threads I get grief for posting information that contain citations to other educational web sites that back up my statement. I've got to find out now if termites are native to North America now.

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#9
In reply to #6

Re: muddy mess

05/28/2010 11:04 PM

I think that everyone thought that as you stated this was the stupidest answer so they didn't even want to comment on it!

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#15
In reply to #6

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 6:41 AM

You are too well known........

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#21
In reply to #15

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 9:34 AM

Nice pun, I love a good pun.

I guess a moderator must've noticed my second comment and then gave me over two million OT as their comment to my silliness. But my silliness had a serious purpose.

I am mildly stunned though with this whole discussion. I presume that this well is the potable water source for the household. Only Kevinm, a retired hydrologist, mentioned the idea of having the water tested for anything related to the discoloration. Everyone else seems to think that the quality of the laundry will tell the owner what is happening underground. What stuns me is that this is presumably the household's drinking water. The good health of everyone there hinges on the quality and cleanliness of this water. A group of armatures might stumble onto the root of the problem but along the way many plausible wrong answers will also surface. I do like the few who proposed troubleshooting methods to identify either a well or household plumbing problem. If the well is the source of the problem, then what's needed here is a local hydrologist familiar with the terrain and technology to come up with a remedy.

Without knowledge of the local geology and precisely what dissolved minerals there are coming out of this well any guess as to the cause, will be just as valid as my ridiculous termite poop explanation. Who knows, maybe a sock in a pipe mechanical filter will be sufficient to solve this problem. Maybe this discoloration is a warning sign that some other transparent poisonous mineral has started to leach into the water. Without knowing of what is actually going on, we should all put a sock in it.

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#22
In reply to #21

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 9:40 AM

İt is recommended that wells be tested annualy İ believe.

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#24
In reply to #21

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 9:55 AM

What about Post #13???? Or have you not read all posts yet?

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#25
In reply to #24

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 10:07 AM

Post no. 13 is by someone that has no idea of what he is talking about at all. There are numerous things that can go wrong with a well and can cause illness.

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#27
In reply to #25

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 12:25 PM

Sorry, I meant #16....Wrong glasses!!

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#26
In reply to #24

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 10:33 AM

Yeah, I did read it. That post insists that clear water from source means that nothing needs to be done. An imprecise statement itself. For while nothing may need to be done to the well, something does have to be done for clean laundry. That implication of troubleshooting I believe fits my comment about identifying well or household plumbing as the source.

But I also question the idea that no visible discolouration at one point of the water flow means that the source of laundry discoloration must be solely downstream from that test point. The problem could be a precipitation in the laundry from the new transparent salts in the water that precipitate out colored with the chemicals used in the laundry. A stretch I'll admit, and not my first choice to troubleshoot this problem but something that should not be discounted.

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#28
In reply to #26

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 12:26 PM

Sorry, I meant #16....Getting old.....

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#34
In reply to #21

Re: muddy mess

05/30/2010 7:56 PM

Thanks for the vote of confidence. It is amazing the folk lore and unprofessional approaches to water problems. I did spend 12 years working for a government agency as a well inspector and another 27+ years running my own business dealing in ground water and well construction. I did expect a just little more common sense from a CR4 forum but lots of interesting reads anyway. Even with obvious errors and perceptions.

However some good points have been made. Investigations to problems of the sort in this thread are best approached very clinically. If the OP was astute we would have had a well record and a description of the well log. Perhaps even a local history of neighbouring wells especially if everyone is having the same issues. We should always look for raw water (direct from the well) quality and the analysis should only be done by an accredited lab. The testing itself is something that should be done and interpreted professionally.

Site conditions are also important. We should also know a little about the pumping system. Knowledge of well construction and water quality are necessary tools to assist in these investigations.

It was also mentioned by someone that they thought yearly testing of the water was required. I am not aware of any jurisdiction that mandates testing of private rural water except a few that insist on limited testing if the property changes hand. New Jersey and Washington have some testing for local concerns (arsenic and lead) but I would advocate the testing of rural domestic water be extensively tested at least once every 10 years or when a noticeable shift in quality (visual, taste, or quantity). Perhaps we should start a new post regarding groundwater testing and frequency. It is becoming a hot issue in some circles. A single family well can be more complex than many municipal wells.

There is a very good book in second edition written by Francis Chappelle called "Ground Water Microbiology and Geochemistry". It is an easy to read book and bridges that gap between chemistry and microbiology. Chappelle is from the South Carolina area and does use the hydrogeology of the area as a basis for his book.

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#3

Re: muddy mess

05/28/2010 2:30 AM

Maybe there is another small thing to check before you put a sock in it! If the pump is close to the bottom of the well and you have a jammed up non- return valve at the bottom, every time you turn off the pump, the column of water in the well goes shooting back down the well mixing all the muck up with the water! Just have a quick check to see if the non-return valve is working properly!

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#7

Re: muddy mess

05/28/2010 8:05 PM

I wonder, would tree-mangled pipe from well to house give you a problem on the second or third load of laundry? I think not, I think it would be all the time. I also had a similar problem with my artesian well after about the first six months, which turned out to be a new liner was required because the casing had not gone right to the bedrock - topsoil was getting into the water in that part of the well. But again, I would expect this to be a problem all the time, for a glass of water or 20 gallons.

Thinking about the cause and effect. When you use a lot of water, how does it affect the system? The water level drops, also the pump runs continuously for a long period. If the pump is close to the bottom, could a change in the water level bring it close enough to stir up the mud? Or, is there enough mud at the pump level, that the constant running of the pump stirs it up after using a certain amount of water. The water at the top could still be clear, if that is well above the water outlet to the house.

I would suggest hauling up the pump by six or a dozen feet and see if that improves the condition.

Deep wells are tricky as far as mineral content goes, because there are many sources down there. We had blasting for construction in our area (so rocky) that altered the water quality quite a bit. When sitting in the basement I could hear the sound of galleries collapsing deep in the earth. One source might get blocked or another opened up that has a mineral deposit and suddenly your water is unfit to drink or wash in.. The only solution might be a filtration system.

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#8
In reply to #7

Re: muddy mess

05/28/2010 11:01 PM

If it is the liner, would water be red clay colored, and also I noticed today that the pump kicks on about every five minutes and runs for about a minute or less. If there is a hole in the water line when you use quite a bit of water wouldn't mud be able to enter through the hole and cause the water to be dingy? and also if the pump kicks on that often would'nt that be a sign of a water leak. Thanks for your comment!

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#14
In reply to #8

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 5:53 AM

I think kevinm answered your question - he's an expert too whereas I am just a well owner. Any comment I would make is based on a submersible pump, you haven't mentioned the type you have as yet... As for the red clay question, that depends on your soil type and whether it is subsoil or surface. Our surface soil is red clay, so the faulty liner drew this into the well. But we later had trouble with iron and manganese and sulfur deposits feeding into the well, and ultimately had to get a filter system.

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#16
In reply to #8

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 6:44 AM

You got it when you wrote:-

also I noticed today that the pump kicks on about every five minutes and runs for about a minute or less

You have a loss of pressure between the pump and the house.......

This might mean a hole in the line.

Why not take a sample with the third wash as well as a "first" sample and have them analysed....? It could even be iron from a rusted pipe.

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#10

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 12:14 AM

Red water, stains, and more colored when you use a lot of water is indicative of iron. It is likely that iron has built up in the well and is being released at long last from a bio-film that has build up over the years of use. When the bio-film has built up to the point it causes problems in the well with either flow or quality of water it is referred to as bio-fouled.

To explain, think of a well as a bio-amplification of the normal water found in the aquifer. All ground water contains some micro-organisms and most have adapted to the environment of that aquifer. The very fact that you drilled a well into a geological formation and pumped water from it creates conditions favourable to biological colonization of the area around the well. The well provides a large geological surface area and the pumping of the water brings nutrients carried by the water into the colonized well bore. Think of the pump as the pizza delivery service. It does not take a lot of nutrients to support the bacteria colony but they will grow a larger colony if more nutrients are present. These nutrients are in the form of total organic carbon (TOC) some nitrogen, phosphorous and trace metals. Most of the time the bacteria present are non-pathogenic and are of no health concern. Iron bacteria are prevalent in most soils and geological formations. These bacteria will cause a slimy deposit to appear on the interior of plumbing and on the well bore as well as the pumping equipment within the well. Eventually, these biofilms will slough into the well.

Another issue you indicated is that the pump will come on and shut off without actually using water. Yes that indicates a leak and likely inside the well. I am not sure if you are using a jet pump (2 line system with a pump in the house) or a submersible pump (preferred) with the pump and wire in the well. It could be a hole in the line, leaky pitless adapter, or a check valve (both types of pumps use them).

Remove the cap from your well and observe and listen for leaky water cascading into the well. If you hear a leak pull the pump and replace the piping. The cascading will cause material to fall into your well. Usually this type of material will settle as clay or sand. Since it does not settle, I tend to think iron, manganese, or even possible iron sulphide precipitates.If you can't hear anything it may be the check valve or a leak below the water level. Sorry, you still have to pull the pump.

If you have ever noticed the smell of sulphur with the iron, I would guess you have an advanced iron bacterial problem. Sulphur reducing bacteria can usually be found under the iron biofilm. The continuous treatment of iron is likely not required as the well preformed okay for 23 years. You should however use a product like Wellrific to shock and flush your well. This product is peroxide based and food grade. Peroxide has the advantage of penetrating the biofilm, whereas, chlorine will only oxidize the surface of the biofilm and not allow you to flush the well properly. I would recommend to shock a well once or twice a year even if you did not have a noticeable problem.

Finally, have your water tested by an accredited lab for nutrients (NO2, NO3, NH3, TKN, total P, TOC), general chemistry, metals include total Fe and total Mn, H2S, turbidity, color, pH, alkalinity, bacteria to include total coliform, E. coli, FS, FC, Background, and HPC. I will be happy to interpret the results.

Retired groundwater microbiology and chemistry guy. A little windy.

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#11

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 12:18 AM

The non-return valve mentioned above is what we call a foot valve and it could be the problem although I would guess you have a submersible multi-stage pump in which case the valve is built into the botton of the pump.

It could be that the red mud is building up in the bottom of your well and is getting closer and closer to your pump. The cure for that is to have the well baled out. Up here they call it a sand bale. It looks like a piece of pipe with a flapper vale on the bottom. Its dropped down the well and the valve is pushed open by dropping through the water and muck at the bottom. When its pulled up the valve closes and holds the mud or muck. This is done repeatedly until it gets to the bottom. Obviously, the pump has to be pulled to do this.

It also sounds like your pressure tank may be getting filled up with the mud. You might want to take the line off the bottom of the tank and see what comes out. I finally put a drain valve on mine because I'm not near as grumpy when I have to drain it.

Good luck,

Randy

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#12

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 2:21 AM

I have been living with a deep well situation for years and have encountered most of the problems that can be associated with them over the past 30years.

Here is what I would do to isolate the problem.

1. bypass the inground lines by hooking up a hose to the top side of the pump at the well and running it to the washer. 2. Run the washer without clothes and of course on clod water setting only. If you can run 2 to 3 complete cycles with no change in the color of the water then the pump is not your problem. If you normally wash clothes using hot water i would hook up the hose as close to the hot water tank as possible and do the same test. If no color in water then your hot water tank is not the problem and I would start investigating an in ground leak. It is possible for an in ground leak to create a pool of clean water around the leak and only get debris in the water after that pool is drained and the debris is pulled into the line.

Just my thoughts on the subject. Hope it helps.

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#13

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 5:39 AM

When the water from source is clear nothing need to be done .

The problem seems so simple, your corroded pipe lines, valves in feed lines need to be checked-particularly for rusted parts.

You can tie a double mesh polyester or Nylon bolting cloth at all inlet water points to avoid rust stains from water.

Think of changing the iron pipe lines with possible pvc lines on s slow phase.

Addition of sequestering agent aids can in activate heavy metals and reduce stains

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#20
In reply to #13

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 8:55 AM

I don't have iron pipes and its not iron rust

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#23
In reply to #20

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 9:53 AM

But is it iron from the ground, it certainly sounds like it or something similar.

Identifying it can only help to find and fix the problem(s).

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#31
In reply to #20

Re: muddy mess

05/30/2010 12:05 PM

Now the source of your mud seems to be some thing external.

Let me guess the chances and you check out the options

* Possible trees, shaky winds over the well- termite or insect nests in well walls or pipe lines which can crack down and fall in the well.

* The same chances if you happened to be a open bottom collection sump or over head tank. The rusted covers/ lids need to be checked.

* The other possibility is your very shop floor, check your roofs, false rooks for such traces since the oily or dusty deposts may fall down into your working machines

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#33
In reply to #31

Re: muddy mess

05/30/2010 2:40 PM

Termite?!?! Well slim, there you go. Were back to those pesky Jamestown transplants.

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#37
In reply to #33

Re: muddy mess

05/31/2010 6:25 AM

Red clay should originate from such nests and being a hily area there are possible chances

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#38
In reply to #37

Re: muddy mess

05/31/2010 6:59 AM

Red clay is also a common soil in parts of the US - it is from the clay - not some arrogant problem making termites.

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#17

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 6:47 AM

Hi Stuck in the mud.

Your well was presumably dug until a reasonable flow of water could be obtained; people just don't keep digging down for the hell of it. I suspect therefore that is actually a bore hole rather than an actual man sized shaft. Whatever the size, the issue is that an acquifer exists at a substantial depth and this is the source of the water.

Draw-down caused by over-pumping or a diminishing content in the acquifer can cause sediments to be washed out and supplied to the submersible. I once lived in an area where we pumping from 600 feetdown, out of flint beds in deep chalk, and over pumping produced a milky suspension which was actually microscopic particles of flint and chalk, great for grinding down tooth enamel!

There may in fact be a clay lens in that acquifer which at times provides some of that water and hence the discolouration appearing and disappearing depending on demand/supply rate.

Here in Scotland we regularly experience 'peaty' water after the winter melts and this can vary from a mild discolouration to actual particles of organic matter arriving. The solution is an in-line filter which being contained inside a transparent bowl readily shows the level of contamination being removed.

Given that your submersible might indeed be suffering from a defective foot valve there would be a substantial back flow whenever it stops which might stir some sediments if it is located near the bottom of the hole; but do remenber that bore hole pumps suck from the top of the casing not the bottom so that the motor is always submerged even when the suction runs dry.Therefore the disturbance factor may not be as dramatic as at first thought.

Also the issue of roots and other extraneous agents might serve to disturb the surface main but any fracture would be signalled by a loss of flow as you would have a leak to ground rather than then other way round. Perhaps a pressure reversal might encourage leaked water to re-enter the supply pipe but a null flow test would indicate this because the pump would remain active to supply the leak.

I would enquire as to whether any other properties have been constructed recently which are deriving water from the same stratum and therefore contributing to the drawdown on that water source.

Finally, be prepared to raise the pump and have a good look at it as there should be evidence of the clayey suspension within the volute casing.

Good luck,

Massey.

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#18

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 6:50 AM

As suggested by many and #12(Guest), do a step by step check.

1-If the water from the top of the well, directly, remains clear after simulating your 2 or 3 wash load demand ( and maybe more), then your problem will be after the well top.

2- If you have a water heater and hot water is drawn into the washing machine, it might have become rusty or filled with a deposit that gets drawn into the pipes: Then you should check if a hot water drawn from it, (taps, shower...) also gets the colour.

3- If nothing so far, remains the supply from the well to the house: If all the taps in the house get their supply from the well, you should get the same phenomena from any tap if you simulate the quantity drawn by the washing machine.

* If you have a reservoir (overhead tank) and the house is fed from it, check it visually to see if a deposit is accumulating at the bottom...

4- There are many steps to isolate the portion of piping(if that becomes obvious) that might be leaky or damaged or causing the problem: This can only be followed up by you or your friendly plumber familiar with your layout.

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#19

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 8:13 AM

I had a problem with a deep water well which started following an earthquake, and we started getting turbidity in the system after running the washer. If you have a 2" line running from your submersible pump then you will have about 115 gallons of water in that line from the pump to the well head. An old top-loader washer is going to use 30-50 gallons of water/load depending on the capacity/settings, so after 2-3 loads of wash, you've used up the water in the line that has settled and is clear, and now you are sucking out of the aquifer source, which is turbid because of who knows? It could be build-up, could be a seismic change like what occurred to me, or one of the other many suggestions on the site. You do need to drain your pressure tank and hot water tanks now, and often as they are getting muck in them from the well, and get your water tested immediately.

My easiest and cheapest solution was to acquire a used, surplus water tank that had a 600 gallon capacity. Pumping into the tank would let the water settle, and I would tap off the clarified water for drinking and cooking, washing etc. and tap off the bottom for watering plants, toilets, etc which would also flush out the crud in the bottom. The fact that you are running clear for several loads indicates the check valve is working and holding.

Also, I lived on the side of a small mountain and was able to get good pressure from a gravity feed with siting the holding/settling tank further up.

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#29

Re: muddy mess

05/29/2010 9:37 PM

You stated that the pump cycles when no water is being used.This indicates either a bad checkvalve, or a leak in the system.A check valve can be added at the top of the line without pulling up the pump.It will function just as well as the one built into the pump.

You could have a leak on the output side of the pump, inside the caseing.This leak would tend to wash the inside of the casing,freeing rust and scale or clay from inside the casing or surrounding rocks around the bore hole.

More steady demand would increase this effect. In a few days the sediment settles out, and water clears up.

You definitely have a leak in your system, and it is costly to keep running it without repair.

HTRN

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#30
In reply to #29

Re: muddy mess

05/30/2010 10:08 AM

Addendum to my previous post:

Most drilling companies only case a well untill they hit bedrock.From there on, the rock forms the casing.Every well has a certain amount of draw-down, the amount that the water drops when the well is used.The more water used, the more the level i n the well drops.Under heavy usage, the water in your well drops to a levle below the leak in the pipe.This leak is under high pressure, being near the bottom of the well, and can eject a high pressure stream of water onto the rock face.This rock face may have embedded sediment or clay in it, which is common, and this is being washed out by the leak when the water level drops below the leak.
Once the water level is restored, the jet of water becomes diffused, and does not cause erosion of the sidewalls.
Ths cycling of the pump is the tell tale sign of a leak.Unfortunately, the pipe must be pulled up to find and repair it.

I have done this myself with a home-made fixture thusly:

Take 2ea 2x4's about 3 feet long, and bore a 7/16 hole thru both of them while they are clamped together.

Obtain a piece of 3/8 all thread rod (ususally sold in 3 ft lenghts at the hardware store), 2ea flat washers, and 2ea 3/8 nuts.

This will be used to make a clamp for the pipe.

If there is a tree nearby, with a limb near the tree, use this as a pouint to fasten your chain hoist or come- along.(these can be rented).

IF no tree is available, a steplader can be used.Straddle the bore hole with the ladder, place the 2x4 clamp around the pipe and take up all of the salck, but do no tighten it yet.Attacch the hoist to a double 2x4 placed across the top inside ladder rung.

Loosen the sanitary seal on the well head, and begin winching up the pipe.When you have pulled up as much as you can handle, or one full 20 foot length(it is ok to let the pipe go thru the ladder rungs and lay on the ground.It is easier with 2 people, one to guide the end of the pipe as it is pulled up.), lower the clamp and tighten the bolts on both ends very tight, but do not crush the pipe.A slight deformation is ok.Release some of the preesure from the winch, and make sure the clamp is holding.

If it holds, release all of the pressure and check again.If all is well, cut off the pipe and re-attach the rope or cable to the pipe.3 or 4 consecuttive half hitches in rope will suffice, or you may make a second clamp like the first to attach to.

Repeat the process till all of the pipe is removed and the pump is visible, at which time you can remove it for inspection and cleaning.

As you are removing the pipe, your power wires will be coming up with it, and also a pull rope.I do not trust the pull rope, but it can be used as a backup to the previous method if desired..

I have removed over 100 feet of pipe without cutting by having several people walk the pipe out from the ladder as I pulled it up.The ladder simply prevents a sharp bend from breaking the pipe, so the taller the ladder, the better.

Your leaking pipe should be easy to find by a close visual examination of the pipe.

If it is sectional glue together PVC, simply replace the bad section.IF it is the flexible type, install a recommended union or coupling.

The proper way, in my opinion, is replace all of the pipe, and make a new splice in the wiring, and replace the rope.When seucring the rope to the eylet on the pump, use a bowline knot and apply heat shrink to the free end of the line to prevent unraveling.

One thing I have discovered the hard way:If a stick of PVC has a scratch in the surface, it will develop into a crack and leak under high pressure.Do not install any scratched pipe into the well.Do not accept any scratched pipe from your supplier.

By the way,Where are you located,I have relatives around Micaville,Burnsville area.

Good luck.

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#32
In reply to #30

Re: muddy mess

05/30/2010 12:53 PM

If you repair the pipe yourself, after reinstalling the new pipe, you must sterilize the well again.

Do this by pouring a gallon of clorox down the hole, trying to wet all sides of the outer casing.Pump water from the well back into the well, down the space between the casing and pressure pipe.After about 15 minutes, turn the pump off, install the seal, and allow to sit overnght.

The next day, pump the water out of the well thru a hose exiting downhill and at least 50 feet away from the well.

Run the water until you cannot smell any chlorine.Use a pool testing kit if you prefer.

Most counties have a free water analysis service, and they provide containers to be mailed to their office for processing.You will receive a written report, but this may take a week or more.

A quick way to test for bacteria is to fill a beaker completly full of water, insert a cork, and turn it upside down.Make sure there are no bubbles in the beaker.

Observe the beaker after a 24 hour period.If there is any air space in the top of the beaker, there is probably bacteria present.They produce CO2 as a byproduct of their metabolism.

Hope this helps.

HTRN

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#39

Re: muddy mess

06/01/2010 7:09 PM

This is a problem I experienced last year on a well some 37 years old. When the redish tint began to show in the toilets, sinks and translucent lines of the ice makers, I just figured the silt was starting to build in the lines and rust in the galvanized lines and such. Wrong!

My wife complains about what I don't hear, so when I talked to her about the well pump cutting on and off at even frequencies when no water was being used, she thought the new meds I have been taking, were screwing with me more than she wanted.

After looking into this cyling on and off, I was right! A leak some where. Undergound water leaks are buggers to find. But one fact remains. Dirt doesn't get into a pressurized line. Just won't happen unless the soil pressure exceeds that of the water line. So where am I loosing pressure and how do we get dirt into the line?

Answer: Over time a hole had eroded in the check valve casting at the bottom of the well beyond the pressure of the pump. Pump comes on raises pressure and cuts off. The pressure in the expansion tank pushes the water out of the hole in the side of the check valve and into the side of the well. Eroding the well hole below the casing and keeping the dirt suspended until the pump comes back on and so on.

And so I ended up pulling a submersible pump out less than a month after having open heart surgery. Dad is still asking who. My wife is still looking for the bill. Me, I am still alive and feeling luckier than any other hard ass fool that can't let someone else do the work. Good luck, be good and remember the one rule that trancends all doctrines. "Do unto others as you would have done to you"

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