Home Repair

problem with well water

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We experienced a failure in our well being able to supply water to the house. After replacing the pump did not remedy the situation, we had the well hydrofracted. At one point the plumber ran an outside line from the well to the house to eliminate the underground line as source of failure. Following the hydrofracture, the well had ample water flow but when we tested the water, it came back postive for non-fecal coliform.

The plumber then chlorinated the well but we were told not to let the chlorine go through the house plumbing. After sitting for 24 hours and diluting off the chlorine we took a new sample. The re-test was even higher for coliform. We had the chlorination repeated with a larger quantity of chlorine. This time we were advised and did let the chlorine go and stand in the house plumbing for 24 hours. Instead of taking one same from the kitchen sink, we took two samples. One from the kitchen sink and the other from the outside garden hose spiget. We removed the screen from the faucets and let the water run 10 minutes before sampling.

The test results showed coliform in the kitchen and no coliform from the outside faucet. We are reticent to rechlorinate the well as the water on the outside faucet tested negative.

What should we do next?

Thanks for any help you can give.
I have a friend in this business and will foward this letter to him. I will post his reply asap. Hang in there....
Here is the reply I got....

Ask these questions.

Is the water supplied to the kitchen and outside spiget from the same source?
I would retest the well water before it enters the house distribution system to isolate the sourse?
Does the home owner have a whole house water softener or filteration system?
Is the well a bedrock or shallow overburden well?
Is the well located next to a surface waterbody?
Is the septic system tied into a private or public system?
Is the lab that is analyzing the water certified by the state to do so?
Does the home owner suspect thatr his neigbors are experincing simular problems?
Had the home Owner experienced this problem prior to reworking his well and delivery system?

Lets start with these questions and see what the response is.
Thanks for your assistance.

The sole source of water is via a drilled well (circa 1982)approximately 300 feet into bedrock. We know of no prior problems with contamination and had the water tested several years ago. When the pump was replaced, just a few months ago when the problems began, a new seal was put in. Unless there is a crack below, we don't believe surface water can get in from the top. The well is not located near any standing surface water. The testing lab is certified and used by most people in the area.
The septic system is new and functioning well. We knowof no others in the area experiencing contamination. We were told to expect contamination by the hydrofracting people after the procedure even though they used chlorinated water. We also knew that it might take several dechlorinations to clear the problem.

We believe that because samples taken at the same time showed non-fecal coliform only in the sink and not at the outside spigot that the well water is not contaminated. It would seem that the contamination must be from the inside. If that is correct, we do not need to chlorinate the well as that is not the source. Rather, we need to somehow isolate the area and sanitize it.

All of the water enters the house and goes into a pressurized holding tank. From there it travels to different pipes for distribution. There is no filtration system in place.

How do you feel we should proceed?

Again, any help is greatly appreciated.
OK I sent your reply along. Now we'll wait and see....
And here is his reply...

Non- fecal coliform bactria is what was reported in my home town's distribution system. It can be caused by increased water temperature in the distrubution system. If possible I would suggest the addition of chlorine to the house distribution system after the pressure tank if possible. Remember to thoughly flush the chlorine from your piping network before using the water..

Hope all this helped!
Thank you for your suggestion. I am not sure how to introduce chlorine into the system after the distribution tank. I expect that this is not a task for the ordinary homeowner. Is this job within a plumber's expertise or do we need a specialist?

Thanks again for the help.
here is the reply....

I would expect that a plumber would be able to install the mechanical fittings that would prevent backflow of chlorine to your pressure tank and at the same time allow you to pump chlorine through the house piping network. See if there is a check valve after the pressure tank. If not ask your plumber to add one and at the same time cut in a tee and associaed fittings to enable you to pump chlorine through the distribution system when you open the faucets in your house.

This is from TheGuru...
I guess we are both experts now!! I would think that if you had a plumber install the fittings as noted above, you could do the chlorine yourself. But since the plumber is already there......


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