We cannot emphasize enough the need for a balanced well maintenance program. Modern water wells are no different than any expensive piece of machinery that you depend on to support your business. Without regular well maintenance and monitoring you simply risk your investment and like any other machinery reduce the shelf life, quality, efficiency and increase the cost to operate. It’s the old adage: sooner or later you’re going to need to service your well; pay me a little now or a lot later.
We pride ourselves on our maintenance programs. We want to work with you to provide individual service programs that will extend the life and quality of your water wells.
When we design a well maintenance program we look at the well log and all the previous services performed on the well. These are invaluable in diagnosing and remediating water wells. A well log is a document containing vital information on the history of the well and the ground surrounding it. A well log should have the following information:
1. A reference number -- unique to the well -- will be at the top, usually in the left corner, followed by areas that provide the owner and location, construction and contractor details, well testing information, and geologic formations encountered by the contractor. Most well logs also will have an area titled "comments," where the contractor can provide additional notes.
2. The owner and the address of the property at the time the well was drilled.
3. In the construction section: the information is related to the reasons for the well, the drilling method used, the depth of the well, the amount and type of casing used, the size and type of screen used, and the type of pump in the well. Some reports also give information on the grout used in the construction process.
4. The distance from the ground level to the top of the water in the well; and drawdown, the difference between the static water level and the level of water during pumping.
With a well log, maintenance records, some video footage and a current water analysis we can make an initial determination if a well remediation is necessary.
What if there is a need to remediate your well. The situation may not be always be bleak.
5. If your water well fails to produce the amount of water that it did when it was first installed; instead of the expense of abandoning the well and installing a new one, we can often “rehabilitate” the well and restore flow at a far lower price than drilling a new well. Several factors are involved, including the ground formation that the well is drilled in, the construction of the well, and the problem that has caused the decreased flow. Sometimes, the water table in the area has dropped or you are experiencing season draw down and simply drilling the well deeper is the answer.
6. We can do tests to see if rehabilitating measures will be successful. The well will often be shut off to see if the static level (the level of the water table in a well when the pump is not operating ) returns to or gets near the original level. If so, rehabilitation will usually work.
7. We will lower a video camera into the well to make sure no other problems will be encountered.
8. The most common is the plugging of holes along the well’s casing and incrustations forming on the well screens. The amount of water going through the well system will drop significantly if several holes or portions of the screens are clogged. Calcium carbonate, iron bacteria, silt, clay, and “slime,” a combination of sediment and deposits, are all common materials that will clog the well.
What are some of the methods we use to rehabilitate a well?
1. We will normally brush and bail the well. This process cleans and scrubs the well casing and provides us a clear look at the well casing and well screens. In this process we use a brush and bucket attached to our drilling rig which is moved up and down the well casing as well as picking up all the materials from the bottom of the well.
2. We may use a technique called ”Raw Hiding” in this process we inject water into the well at controlled pressures and this process breaks up scale and loosens bacteria.
3. We will “Surge Block” the well. In this process we push the liquids in the well down and pull them back up. This surging action moves the volume of chemicals from inside the well casing through the screens and into the well face and then sucks them back into the casing. This high pressure high volume push pull process breaks up and kills bacteria both inside and outside the casing.
4. We will use our “Redi Clean” family of products to dissolve the incrusting materials so they can be pumped from the well.
Why should you maintain and disinfect your well?
1. Good maintenance programs help you define problems early before those problems become serious.
2. Repairs made early will cost less and help protect your water source.
3. Inspections will prolong or prevent the need for eventual well replacement.
4. It will extend useful life of the pump, columns, motor and casing. Iron and sulfur bacteria can make water more acidic, resulting in corrosion of metal parts.
5. Flow restrictions created by bacterial growths add to the stresses placed on the pump. The cost to pump water is reduced by minimizing bacteria slimes, which plug the aquifer and piping.
Our maintenance programs include:
1. A monthly water flow test to determine your systems output, along with a check of the water level before and during pumping (if possible), pump motor performance (check amp load, grounding, and line voltage), pressure tank and pressure switch contact, and general water quality (odor, cloudiness, etc.).
2. An inspection of well equipment to assure that it is sanitary and meets local code requirements.
3. A test of your water for Coliform bacteria and nitrates, and anything else of local concern. Other typical additional tests are those for iron, manganese, water hardness, sulfides, and other water constituents that cause problems with plumbing, staining, water appearance, and odor. Changes in these constituents also may indicate changes in your well or local ground water.
4. A concise, clear, written report should be delivered to you following the checkup that explains results and recommendations, and includes all laboratory and other test results
What if we find bacteria?
What is the "iron bacteria" problem?
Described as iron biofouling, "iron bacteria" is both complex and widespread. Iron and other biofouling consists of biofilms which include living and dead bacteria, their sheaths, stalks, secretions and other leavings, and embedded metal hydroxide particles. "Iron bacteria" is one type of biofouling among several, including the characteristic white sulfur slime of sulfur springs.
Manganese and even aluminum biofouling is also found in ground water systems. These biofilms are natural and usually harmless. Natural iron biofouling often acts as a preliminary iron filter in wells and therefore can serve a positive function as well.
Biofouling can be a nuisance, however. Generally, iron biofouling is the cause of iron build up in wells and pipes. Bacterial iron may build up quickly compared to mineral encrustation.
When is the best time to cleanup a biofouling problem such as iron bacteria?
The best time, obviously, is as early as possible before real damage occurs and treatment methods are most effective. This is usually long before you notice any loss of water pressure or GPM. The key is catching a growth before it causes problems.
Call us today at 760-610-2412