Most homebuyers would never consider purchasing a home without a thorough inspection of the structure and its operating systems. The same care must be taken to inspect the property’s well system and the quality of its drinking water. When buying a home with a private well, one of your inspections should include a well system check up to ensure the well is in good working order. Prior to the inspection, you should obtain your well’s log or record, which contains information on the history of the well and the ground surrounding it. Contractors must file well logs with their respective states upon completion of all new wells. However, well owners should also own a copy and keep their own log in case the well needs to be serviced at any time.
A field supervisor provides an inspection of the well components and reports whether or not the integral parts of the well are operating satisfactorily. The inspection also includes checking the condition of the casing and well cap. An above ground well cap should be checked for tightness to ensure unwanted invaders or debris can’t end up inside and possibly contaminate your well. In order to obtain the basic system condition on the date of inspection, the information is gathered while a 30-minute flow test is performed. The final results will be either Satisfactory or Unsatisfactory.
- Submersible Pumps – What is a submersible pump? Submersible pumps are centrifugal pumps. The submersible pump has a great advantage over other centrifugal pumps, because all stages of the pump end (wet end) and the motor are joined and submerged in the water. This means there is no need to re-circulate or generate drive water as with jet pumps, so most of its energy goes toward “pushing” the water rather than fighting gravity and atmospheric pressure to draw water. Submersible pumps are recommended for deep wells.
- Jet Pumps – What is a jet pump? Jet pumps are mounted above ground and lift the water out of the ground through a suction pipe. Popular in areas with higher water tables and warmer climates, your pump selection will vary according to water levels.
- Pressure Switch – The pressure switch turns the pump on and off. There should be a 20 psi differential for a typical house well pumps. The settings are normally 30-50 or 40-60 psi
- Drawdown and Recovery Drawdown – This refers to the amount of water that evacuates the tank before the pressure switch will activate the pump. Drawdown is affected by the pump, the size of the tank and the pressure settings that govern your water system. Recovery refers to the time it takes for the tank to recover from switching off.