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Old 08-10-2011, 07:40 AM   #1
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Moving to a house with a well---what to expect?


moving into a house with a well on Monday. never had a well before, always had city water. I will definitely install/replace the filter that's there. I assume if I want to do any plumbing work in the house I just turn off the power to the well pump, right? And then release the pressure from the lines. Anything else specific to having a well I need to know? I think I am going to call a local well company and have everything double checked.

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Old 08-10-2011, 04:09 PM   #2
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Moving to a house with a well---what to expect?


Started a new thread for you Fred,

Call the well company that installed the well or most recent pump---hopefully they put a sticker on the tank.

Ask what the typical pump life is in your area---

And the well depth if they have that---

other than that --check the water hardness and see if you have a water softener--

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Old 08-10-2011, 04:24 PM   #3
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Moving to a house with a well---what to expect?


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I assume if I want to do any plumbing work in the house I just turn off the power to the well pump, right? And then release the pressure from the lines.
Not really maybe!

You would simply turn off the water at the reservoir assuming there is a reservoir. No reason to drain the entire reservoir needlessly. No reason to turn off the the power to the well either.

Same goes for changing filters. Check out how the filter cartridges are set up and which valves are used to close off the supply to make a filter change.
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Old 08-10-2011, 11:16 PM   #4
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Moving to a house with a well---what to expect?


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Not really maybe!

You would simply turn off the water at the reservoir assuming there is a reservoir. No reason to drain the entire reservoir needlessly. No reason to turn off the the power to the well either.

I have found it strange in my 4 years of plumbing now that none of the people in my shop put a shut off valve coming out of the pressure tank. I think it's a great idea to save water and there isn't really any reason you WOULDN'T want to shut it off when you're working on the system, unless you're trying to drain the pressure tank to replace it, in which case it doesn't even matter.

The last house we lived in, I put a valve there, and it saves a lot of waiting. I'm not sure why others do not do this.
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Old 08-11-2011, 12:52 PM   #5
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Moving to a house with a well---what to expect?


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I have found it strange in my 4 years of plumbing now that none of the people in my shop put a shut off valve coming out of the pressure tank. I think it's a great idea to save water and there isn't really any reason you WOULDN'T want to shut it off when you're working on the system, unless you're trying to drain the pressure tank to replace it, in which case it doesn't even matter.

The last house we lived in, I put a valve there, and it saves a lot of waiting. I'm not sure why others do not do this.
There should be a shut off valve there and a drain cock just above it to drain back all of the house lines for repairs, etc.
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Old 08-11-2011, 01:04 PM   #6
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Moving to a house with a well---what to expect?


Depending on when the well was drilled and where, the drill date and depth may be stamped on the sanitary seal at the top of the well casing. Depth is good to know if you ever need to replace a pump.

People that move from a municipal water supply to a well sometimes gain experience when they learn that their well might not contain an unlimited supply of water ....... particularly if it hasn't rained for a few months. Rain soaks into the ground where it makes it's way to deep aquifers that your well is tapped into. No rain= no car washes, no lawn watering, no half hour showers.
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Old 08-11-2011, 06:36 PM   #7
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Moving to a house with a well---what to expect?


first of all, Thanks! Very kind of you to start this thread. I am very handy- built my last house from scratch- but the well thing has me completely befuddled. By law, they had it tested prior to closing but I assume that was for toxins and not depth and static pressure and all that. On the walk through last week I searched the property and couldn't find anything that looked like a well anywhere. (I was looking for a small plate or cap somewhere I was guessing.)

As for the reservoir, what reservoir? Is it part of the pressure tank? I want to make sure I have lots of water pressure as well. Is a submersible pump better than a surface pump? Questions questions questions.
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Old 08-11-2011, 07:06 PM   #8
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Moving to a house with a well---what to expect?


Reservoir and pressure tank are the same thing. I don't know anything about wells either other than the one we have.

The well is at whatever depth is determined that it needs to be for your area. Ours was at 117 ft for forty years until the drought came along a few years ago and we began pumping sand. We had a new well put in and in a different location and went to 260 ft down. Yours could be more or less.

The well shaft itself will be a long section of pipe into which the submersible electric pump is lowered well below the surface of the aquifer.

The pump brings water to the surface and pumps it into a steel or Fiberglas reservoir that contains a rubber bladder, hence "pressure tank". The water pressure (force) of the pump expands the bladder to create the water pressure and the pressure can vary some I guess depending on at what point of expansion the bladder is at any given time.

They are super reliable and can produce adequate water and water pressure assuming the water supply is there for the pump to raise to the surface.

The system can also have a regulator that will increase and decrease water pressure (based on water availability) and will maintain an almost constant pressure.

There may be other styles of residential water wells but I have no knowledge of them or how they may work.

Our well this time has a (you can't miss it) well-head in the yard that rises about 16 inches above the surface and we mow around it. Our previous well was located in a small underground vault with access to the well head from a well-house accessible from the basement.

The kids called it the spook house because it had a dirt floor and was always full of cobwebs. After the new well was installed we had the old well plugged and capped. I closed off the vault leaving only the underground house which is where the pressure tank is still contained. Our reservoir/pressure tank has a shut off valve on the tank. Immediately followed by the filtering system that can also be shut down to change the filter cartridges without back-draining the entire house. Our filter cartridge housings are clear plastic so you can see the condition of the water and the filters at any given time.

If there are other types of systems I'm sure someone will come along and update for you. If I have said something really stupid I can guarantee you someone will come along and correct me.

Hopefully this gives you some idea as to what you may have and what to look for.

Someone will have records of your well and the particulars. You could easily locate any of the well services in your area and find out who has your information. In this area well-stats are kept by the well diggers, basically.

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