Millions of American homes depend on their privately owned wells to provide the water their family drinks and uses each day. The majority of these private water wells are capable of fulfilling decades of water usage needs with only routine maintenance, but it is still important for homeowners to recognize the signs that a repair issue may be developing.
The sudden appearance of sediment in a glass of water drawn from the tap can be one of the signs that water well repairs are needed. Homeowners who are now seeing sediment in their water supply can use the following information to help determine the cause.
Well screen deterioration
When sediment begins to show up in water from a well that has been clear in the past, the problem can often be attributed to the deterioration of the well screen. Water wells that are drilled through layers of loose rock or sand are equipped with a well screen to help ensure that the water drawn by the pump is free of sediment.
The well screen provides protection for the well pump and helps to keep sediment from damaging its moving parts. As the well screen ages, it can deteriorate, developing holes or weakened areas that allow increasing amounts of sediment to make its way through the pump to the faucets of the home. Homeowners who suspect a well screen problem will need to have the problem addressed quickly to prevent serious damage to the pump.
Homeowners can also begin noticing sediment issues if their water well pump is positioned too low inside the well casing. Ideally, a submersible water well pump should be positioned several feet above the base of the well to reduce the chances of sediment being drawn up into the casing during the pumping process.
If the well pump was installed at or near the base of the well, homeowners may begin to notice the appearance of sediment in the bottom of their water glasses or other containers. Depending on the actual position of the well pump, the appearance of sediment may be intermittent or worsen during periods of heavy rainfall when the water table in the underground reservoir is fluctuating.
In addition to well screen deterioration and pump position, homeowners may also notice the appearance of sediment due to other potentially serious water well repair issues. To get more specific information, homeowners who notice sediment in their well water should immediately contact a local water well repair service to diagnose the problem.Share