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How Private Water Wells Fill Varied Needs

While some might hear the term “private water well” and think it’s exclusive to rural areas or related needs like farming, this is actually a misconception. While rural areas and needs do make up a sizable portion of the water wells in the US, there are also many other situations where home or building owners may consider them — even in more populated metropolitan areas.

At Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC, we’re here to offer our comprehensive range of water well services to anyone interested, no matter their locale or their prior knowledge of how wells work. We offer everything from water well drilling and installation through repair, rehabilitation and long-term maintenance, and we’ve also helped many people understand how a water well will benefit them and their home or building. Whether you live in a big city or a rural area, and whether or not you have special circumstances that commonly require a well, here are some of the ways private water wells benefit everyone — even those in fairly “normal” living situations.

private water wells needs

Water Municipality Independence

When you own a private water well on your property, you completely remove your dependence on municipal sources of water. While many people are happy with the water quality delivered by their local government, there are others who don’t trust it — especially in areas where poor water quality is common.

Private well owners have the peace of mind that comes from knowing they won’t find themselves without any drinking or cooking water because of a contamination issue or other problem. They also won’t deal with issues like a water main leak or others, which often take several days to be resolved by the municipality.

No (or Low) Sewer and Water Bills

When you own a private water well, you don’t have to pay for sewer services. It’s one less bill to contend with and can help lower your monthly costs significantly. Plus, if you’re in an area that often deals with sewer main breaks or other issues, the peace of mind that comes with not having to be at the mercy of poor infrastructure is priceless.

This is especially true if issues with your prior water setup caused you to regularly drink bottled water, which is costly and inconvenient. Many home or business owners are shocked at the savings they can achieve within a few months of installing a private water well, and some may even save enough to pay for the total cost of ownership within that time.

Drinking Water Quality

When you own a private water well, you know it will deliver clean, safe drinking water every time. Municipal sources sometimes run into problems related to their source or treatment methods that can cause contamination issues.

Well water, on the other hand, is purified naturally by the earth. There’s no chance of contamination or other issues, so you can be sure your water is safe every time you turn on the faucet. This water also contains minerals like calcium and magnesium, which — in the right quantities — are actually very beneficial to human health.

Water Tastes Better

In addition to everything we’ve gone over, did you know that well water also tastes better than most municipally-delivered sources? This is especially true if your municipality treats its water with chlorine, which can give it a slightly “off” or metallic taste.

When you own a private well, you’ll never have to worry about water that tastes odd or unpleasant again. Your family members will also be able to enjoy higher quality beverages that use water from the well, too.

This theme, again, is heightened in situations where bottled water has been a common use. Bottled water will often contain chemicals that are not only harmful, but also make it taste very bland. This is in stark contrast to well water, which tastes rich and refreshing.

Environmental Benefits

As if there weren’t already enough issues with municipal water supplies and all the hoops they make you jump through, they’re also not very friendly to the environment. The energy and chemicals used in processing and purifying water for residents are often harmful to the local environment, which can have a negative impact on wildlife.

And when it comes time to dispose of used water treatment chemicals or wastewater runoff, this isn’t done in an environmentally-friendly manner either. The environmental impact of municipal sources is huge — but not when you own a private well.

The toxins and chemicals aren’t created, and there’s no wastewater runoff to contend with either. If you’re environmentally-conscious or want to take steps in that direction (especially if your home is located near wildlife like a pond or lake), having your own water well can be an invaluable asset.

Top Water Well Professionals

Have we convinced you of the value of a water well? If so, or if you’ve already been considering an upgrade to a well for some time, it’s important to work with top professionals like ours.

When it comes to a private water well, you should never cut corners or search for the lowest bid. This is because installation and maintenance professionals have years of training and experience that may not be apparent from a cursory online search. Our top professionals can provide peace of mind knowing your well was installed correctly the first time — without any risk of future problems.

If you’re ready to upgrade your home or business, our experts will provide a free consultation and estimate before beginning work. For more on this, or to learn about any of the other benefits of private water wells no matter your circumstances, speak to the staff at Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC today.

Variables that Impact Utah Submersible Well Pump Lifespan

One of the most popular and commonly-used components in water well systems today is the submersible pump, which has a sealed motor that’s attached to the pump body. This allows the pump to be submerged in water, pumping water to the surface using this motor and creating an efficient, consistent supply of water. Like with any motorized component that undergoes significant strain over time, however, submersible well pumps have expected lifespans that may be impacted by factors like maintenance, upkeep and others.

At Mike Zimmerman Well Service, LLC, we’re here to help with this and numerous other water well pump repair and service needs throughout Utah. We know that not only do our clients want the very best well pump technology utilized for their system, they want to know their pump will last for many years without issue. What are some of the factors that will play a role in the longevity and durability of a submersible water well pump? Here are several to keep in mind.

variables submersible well pump lifespan

Quality of Submersible Well Pump Materials and Installation

Two of the single largest factors in determining how long your submersible water well pump will last are the materials used and the installation performed for this component. In terms of material quality, you want to make sure the pump’s body is made up of strong, durable components that won’t break or crack under intense usage. Furthermore, you want the motor to be made from quality parts and pieces as well, so it can withstand water exposure without damage.

As for a good installation job, this means more than simply using the right tools and parts to bolt your submersible well pump in place. An expertly-done installation will include properly lining up the pipe work that runs from the groundwater level to the pump at the surface, so it can run cleanly and efficiently without any clogs or obstructions. If you’re not experienced with water well installation and water pump repair, it’s best to have a professional handle this aspect of the project.

We can’t even begin to tell you the extent of the issues we hear about when well pump installation is carried out by unqualified individuals. Not only will the pump last for far less time, it will often do so while performing on an extremely limited basis and may even lead to water quality issues in your home. Contact our team for any new pump installation needs you may have.

Water Quality

Another key factor in your well pump’s longevity, and one you may not have considered specifically, is the quality of water being pumped through it regularly. Wells with large amounts of sand or debris, heavy mineral content or other factors that may damage the pump will lead to a shorter lifespan than one using cleaner, clearer water. This is another area that traces back to installation, which involves properly assessing the water quality in your area before installing a well and pump setup.

Water Temperature

Generally speaking, higher water temperatures tend to lead to shorter motor lifespans in submersible water well pumps. Again, each pump is different, but the hotter your area’s groundwater level tends to be, the less time your well will last. If you’re in an area with high water temperatures (over 120 degrees Fahrenheit), it may even be best to seek a different solution than a submersible system; our pros will be happy to recommend alternatives if this is your situation.

Quality of Electricity Supplied to Pump Motor

In addition, a major factor influencing the long-term lifespan of your well pump is the electricity being supplied to its motor. If you have an area with low voltage or an inconsistent supply, this will also lead to a shorter pump lifespan. It’s best to try to operate your system in a location where electricity is consistently available and at the proper voltage level – if it isn’t, we can help you resolve these issues.

In some cases, you may have to arrange for power resources outside your normal infrastructure. In these cases, a generator may be an excellent option to make sure your pump’s motor receives the right level of power it needs to run smoothly.

Well Pump Component Quality

And finally, the actual components included in any pump you’re using will obviously play a significant role in how long this pump will last. Quality materials, including the bearings and seals used for this part of the system, can significantly increase your pump’s longevity.

Additionally, it’s important to make sure the seal between the top of the submersible water well pump body and the motor is quality; a good seal will keep out water that could lead to damage.

Eventual Replacement

Even if you’re extremely diligent and stay on top of everything we’ve gone over to this point, it’s a simple reality that your submersible water well pump will not last forever. Many systems are designed to last fifteen years or even longer, but typically they will need to be replaced after that amount of time. Be sure you plan for this eventuality during the initial installation process by lining up a contractor who can install a new pump when the time comes. Our team is experienced with this precise setup, installing well pumps but also arranging for regular maintenance and inspections that will help you identify the situations that might dictate a new well pump upgrade in the future.

For more on the factors impacting the lifespan of submersible water well pumps, or to learn about any of our well pump or water well installation services in Utah, speak to the staff at Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC today.

Water Well Pump Types and Maintenance Needs

For those who own a private water well of any kind, one of the single most important components in its regular operations will be the well pump. Responsible for pulling water from the well itself and moving it to the areas of your home or property where it’s needed, the well pump plays a vital role – but depending on the sort of well you’re setting up, a few different types of well pumps might be utilized.

At Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC, we’re happy to assist with a wide range of services for water well pumps, from selecting the ideal pump for a new well installation to helping you maintain and/or repair your existing pump. What are some of the most common water well pump types you’ll generally have available to you if you’re drilling a new well, and what are the basics on these that will not only help you decide between them, but will also dictate some of the long-term maintenance needs they have? Here’s a primer, including some tips on said maintenance and how to avoid any pressure concerns in your well.

water well pump types maintenance

Submersible Well Pumps

For the deepest wells out there, plus those that are being built for the long-haul and expected to last decades without major issues, the most common option will be the submersible well pump. Made up of a cylindrical setup that sits about five feet above the very bottom of your well, this pump type uses a motor to draw well water up and through the system.

Because the motor sits in an area where water is present, it is sealed and will generally be completely waterproof. It works by pushing water up through the well, rather than pulling – the latter is a bit more common, but the motor function allows for this simpler method. Because of this and the general lack of too many moving parts, a submersible water well pump will often go 20-25 years at a time without requiring any major repairs. All you’ll need to do is provide very simple maintenance, something our team is happy to help with, and which we’ll go over in further detail later.

Jet Well Pumps

Jet pumps, on the other hand, work using a suction format rather than a pushing format. They involve the use of pipes to move water around, and actually have two variations:

  • Shallow jet pumps: The type that sits above the ground, using a pipe to draw water out from the well. This type is only suitable for wells that are 25 or fewer feet deep; at the same time, they tend to require less maintenance than deeper pumps.
  • Deep jet pumps: Using increased suction power that moves water faster and further, the deep jet pump can be used for wells 50-100 feet in depth, depending on certain other factors. This format uses two pipes: One that moves water through suction, and the other operating jets inside the well borehole.

Centrifugal Well Pumps

Finally, for the shallowest wells you might be considering, those under 25 feet and typically even shallower, a centrifugal well pump will sometimes be used. This type also uses suction and a pipe setup, but unlike the jet pump, it only requires a single pipe – this pipe goes into the borehole and water column of the well, pulling out water without taking up much space.

Centrifugal pumps are attractive to many well owners because they’re both affordable and relatively compact. In addition, they require very little maintenance due to the fact that they don’t go very deep into the ground. For this reason, they tend to be the top choice for shallower wells.

Importance of Maintenance

While it’s true that the different well pump options we’ve just gone over come with varying levels of required maintenance, this area remains vital for each and every one of them. Even with centrifugal well pumps, which probably require the least maintenance of all due to their shallower depth, issues can and will arise if you neglect maintenance altogether – components may wear down, pipes may become cracked or otherwise damaged, and more.

And in reality, many of the maintenance elements for well pumps are very simple and easy to perform. One of them is regular cleaning, particularly of the pump’s cooling fans – these are in place to help cool down the motors that pull water up, but you need to ensure they’re free of dust or cobweb buildup, which could encourage overheating. In addition, having your pump inspected yearly by our team of water well professionals will allow us to identify any loose or damaged parts, plus repair them for low or no cost rather than allowing them to get worse over time.

Pressure Concerns

Finally, a quick note on one potential well pump issue that no one wants to see: A sudden drop in pressure. There are a couple areas to check (either on your own or with the assistance of our professionals) if this happens:

  • Sediment filter: Your well has a sediment filter in place to catch and filter out various debris and contaminants, but this filter may have become clogged if it hasn’t been changed or cleaned. Be sure to check this first.
  • Air bladder: Within your water well tank, there’s a component called the air bladder, which puts force on the water and increases water pressure in the tank to assist the pump. However, if the bladder loses its inflation, it may drop your water pressure. If you think this is what’s happening, call our water well professionals for assistance.

For more on water well pump types and how to manage them, or to learn about any of our water well drilling or rehabilitation services, speak to the staff at Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC today.

Risks and Signs of Water Well Flooding Issues

While flooding is less of a concern in a dry state like Utah than it might be in a state with other conditions, such as Florida for instance, these issues do still take place sometimes in our state. And when flooding takes place in or around your property’s water well, it risks not only damage, but also contamination and other potential problems that you’ll want to deal with quickly and expediently.

At Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC, we’re here to help. We offer a variety of water well inspection and well treatment services, including for wells that have experienced any kind of flooding and may require treatment for contaminants or other concerns. What are the major risks involved with a water well flood, what are some signs that may tip you off that a flood has occurred or is occurring, and how will our pros help if you’re in this situation? Here’s an important primer.

signs water well flooding

Debris and Damage

First and foremost, one of the largest risks associated with flooding in a water well, or in many other settings as well, is the presence of debris. Floodwater is incredibly powerful in nature, meaning it can move large and heavy debris around without any trouble at all – and this often happens very quickly when there’s a flood, with items breaking away from structures or simply being picked up by flowing water.

And as you may have imagined, this can be extremely damaging to your well equipment. Debris may fly around and smash into various parts of the well, from the casing to the pump and even certain components near the well opening. The physical damage caused here may vary from minor up to significant.

Structural Integrity

In some cases, when flooding is heavy enough, the risks of damage aren’t only present to well components themselves, but also to other surrounding areas. For instance, a major flood in or from your well may lead to significant amounts of water in the ground and soil around the well, and may loosen this ground in major ways.

This, in turn, may lead to major structural integrity risks for the well and its surrounding components. In the worst of these cases, a complete collapse of the well may take place – these only tend to happen if major flooding has been ignored by the well owner, which underscores the importance of immediately working to remedy any flooding that’s taking place (more on spotting the signs of a flood in just a bit).

Post-Flooding Sediment Presence

And while flood damage is one of the top concerns involved here, there are also risks present once the main flood is over and cleanup is underway. One of the top areas here is the presence of a few different forms of sediment, which refer to various minerals or other particles that make their way into a water supply – sediment is much more common in untreated groundwater than in your well water supply, but flooding often creates issues where these two supplies are combined.

There are two major problems with sediment buildup: For one, it may enter your water supply and contaminate your drinking water, or at the very least make it taste bad. For another, however, high quantities of sediment are known to negatively impact your well pump, including often causing it to malfunction and require repair or replacement if too much sediment has built up over time.

Contaminants

Speaking of contaminants, sediment isn’t the only risk here when a flood takes place in or around your water well. There are several other contaminant types that may be picked up by floodwater as it builds, from pesticides up through fungus, bacteria and many others.

And while sediment usually just makes the water taste or smell bad, without too many significant health risks attached to it, the same cannot be said for some of these other contaminants. Drinking them will pose significant health risks to you and any other occupants of your home. For this reason, one major recommendation we make to any well owner dealing with floods is to stop drinking the water immediately and procure another temporary water source until we’re able to test your well for contaminants.

Electrical Risks

In addition to all of the above, flooding is often a major risk when it comes to electricity. As most are well aware, these two areas do not mix: Water is a conductor, and large pockets of standing water may become very dangerous if there are open electrical circuits nearby. If this is the case after any well or other flood in your home, you should turn off your electrical circuit breaker and call a professional electrician in addition to our well rehabilitation specialists.

Luckily, many modern electrical appliances are built to automatically power themselves down if they become submerged in water.

Signs of Flooding and Professional Assistance

Here are some signs your well might be flooding:

  • Floodwater has risen above the actual well cap at the top of the well, and you see it leaking out.
  • In cases where you did not see the actual flooding take place, such as if it happened at night, you may see sediment and debris on top of the well cap.
  • In other cases, you may either call your local division of environment protection or receive a call from them. These groups monitor the quality of groundwater and can inform you if any contamination has taken place.

For more on the risks and signs of well flooding, or to learn about any of our water well drilling, repair or other services, speak to the staff at Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC today.

Steps Involved in a Utah Water Well Installation

For those who have never been through the process before, the drilling and installation of a new water well may seem like something of a black box. In reality, though, this is a relatively straightforward process, one that’s easy enough to understand once you’ve had it explained to you or seen it done – and for those considering such an installation in the future, learning about how well installation works will often be a valuable pursuit.

At Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC, we’re happy to offer the very best in water well drilling and installation services in Utah, along with numerous related solutions like well inspections, well treatment and well rehabilitation when needed. We use a couple different water well drilling methods, the most common of which is rotary drilling that allows for access at a deep level and high-quality water. In addition to the actual drilling itself, however, what does the process of installing a new water well on a property involve? Here’s a primer on all the relevant steps.

steps Utah water well installation

Acquiring Proper Permits

First and foremost, before any significant work can be done, the proper permits must be acquired to allow for the well drilling in the first place. The permits required for your well may depend on a few factors, including the type and depth of well you’re considering, the city or town you live in, and potentially even the location of the well on your property.

This is one area where, right from the start, you see the value of working with quality water well drilling professionals. Instead of being left to figure out which permits you need and pore through pages upon pages of fine print, you can simply leave this theme to us. Our well drilling professionals know exactly which permits are needed for any well type or area we’re drilling in, and we have extensive experience filling out the required forms and securing these permits with no issues. We’ll confirm that all required areas are covered completely, ensuring there’s no risk of legal issues for your well at any point in its lifespan.

Location Analysis

Once your permits are squared away, the next major step here will be figuring out which location on your property is best for the well you require. This involves our drilling team visiting your property and analyzing several elements of its geology, attempting to determine which area will best hold groundwater while evaluating a few other factors in the process. For detailed information on how our team will select your actual well location, call us today.

Clearing the Space

Once we know where the well will be going on your property, it’s time to make sure this area is clear and clean for the drilling to be done. This involves clearing vegetation, plants and any other obstacles that may be present in this area – you can either remove plants or work to uproot them to another area of the yard, if possible.

One general tip here, which our team will also give you if you’re participating in the ground clearing process: Try to limit your tiling if you are moving or removing plants. This is because tilling can upset soil’s structural integrity, and this may lead to collapses during the drilling process that will slow things down and possibly increase the expense of the project. If you have any questions whatsoever about clearing your well space prior to installation, don’t hesitate to call our team.

Site and Equipment

One important task just prior to drilling day: Confirming that all the relevant equipment will be able to make it to the site. We’re talking mostly about certain drilling rigs, trucks and related equipment that is often oversized and is very heavy – not only do we have to confirm that there are no major obstructions blocking it from the property, such as power lines, trees or others, we also have to ensure that the ground is stable enough to support the weight of our equipment. This is a simple enough process that usually only takes a quick assessment from one of our team members.

Drilling Day

After all the above steps have been covered, it’s finally time for drilling to begin. Our team will come to your property with all our equipment and level the area so the rig can be balanced. Once this is done, the first drill tower will be raised, and the first rod will be placed down to begin the drilling.

The first layer drilled through is known as the overburden, comprised of dirt, rock and clay that’s near the surface. Once the overburden is broken through, the bedrock layer will be reached – this is the depth and which groundwater will usually be found. Throughout this process, our team will advance your well casing down as we drill, plus will place drill rods at periodic intervals until we reach the bedrock location. Finally, we’ll install the well pump once we’ve finished the drilling process.

Testing and Connections

Finally, once the well is drilled and the pump is installed, you will be able to connect the system to your plumbing. At this time, however, it’s vital not to gloss over water quality testing, which should be done before you use the well for any significant purposes. We’re happy to detail your testing options and the recommended testing formats as-needed.

For more on the water well drilling process and how it will work, or to learn about any of our water well services in Utah, speak to the staff at Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC today.

Water Well Capacity, Flow Rate and Property Needs

For any property owner considering a water well for their water supply, capacity will be a vital theme to keep in mind. All properties have some level of water needs, and ensuring your well will have an adequate supply of water to meet these needs is one of the single most important factors for your selection process.

At Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC, we’re happy to help with these and any related questions for all our clients. Our comprehensive water well drilling and installation services include a keen eye toward well capacity, ensuring that any client we install a well for will receive robust quantities of water to meet all their property needs. We’ll also assist property owners looking to calculate their water use needs, plus some important terminology and themes to be aware of as you’re making these calculations for a well installation. Here’s a primer on estimating water use and well capacity needs in a few different settings.

water well capacity flow rate

General Use Needs and Fixtures

From a very broad perspective, standard homes use between 50 and 100 gallons of water per person per day. This is a very wide estimate, of course, because not all homes and people use water in the same ways, and this number can vary pretty significantly.

Getting a bit more specific, how do various appliances or fixtures on your property use water on a typical basis? Here are some of the most common such appliances, plus their general rate of water usage:

  • Kitchen sink: 3 gallons per minute
  • Bathroom sink: 2 gallons per minute
  • Garbage disposal: 4 gallons per day
  • Standard dishwasher: 7-14 gallons per load (depending on the model)
  • Energy-efficient (economic) dishwasher: 4.5 gallons per load
  • Top-loading washing machine: 43 to 51 gallons per load
  • Front-loading washing machine: 27 gallons per load
  • Standard toilet: 5 gallons per flush
  • Low-flow toilet: 1.6 gallons per flush
  • Shower or tub: 5 gallons per minute
  • Outdoor half-inch hose: 5 gallons per minute
  • Water softener regeneration: 50-100 gallons per cycle

While your precise appliance water usage might vary slightly from the above numbers, these are pretty solid estimates. In our subsequent sections, we’ll go over the proper way to use these numbers to calculate your property’s well water needs.

Total Daily Use Vs Peak Demand

Using the numbers we just listed, and also with the help of resources like your monthly water bill, you can fairly easily determine your total daily water use – as the name indicates, the total amount of water used on your property on an average day. However, as our well experts will tell you, this number is less important than finding your peak demand needs.

This is because, in the vast majority of properties, most of the water used is actually utilized during a very short period of time – usually just a few hours, and mostly in the morning and evening. For this reason, the general recommendations for planning well water capacity are these: Calculate your estimated total daily use, but then plan to install a system that can meet this number within a two-hour period. That is, your well water system should be able to meet your full day of water needs all within two hours, so you know it’s reliable enough to handle peak needs, even those that are at the very tip-top of your need threshold.

Yield Themes

When referring to how much water can actually be delivered from a well to your system, this is known as the yield. The calculation for water well yield will be expressed in terms of flow rate, which is derived using gallons per minute of water usage (GPM). Technically speaking, well yield equals the maximum rate of GPM a well can be pumped at without lowering the water level in the borehole of your well, which is found below the pump intake.

Flow Rate and Room Numbers

Generally speaking, the standard recommendation for minimum flow rate in a single-family home water well is 6 GPM. This level will provide 360 gallons of water per hour to the home, which is almost always enough to meet the peak demands of a standard household – if you have a particularly large number of water-use appliances, however, you may need a slightly higher flow rate.

However, you can get more specific than this if you want. Here are some basic recommendations for water well flow rate based on the number of bedrooms and bathrooms in your home:

  • Two bedrooms: 1 bath = 6 GPM; 1.5 bath = 8 GPM; 2 bath = 10 GPM
  • Three bedrooms: 1 bath = 8 GPM; 1.5 bath = 10 GPM; 2 bath = 12 GPM
  • Four bedrooms: 1 bath = 10 GPM; 1.5 bath = 12 GPM; 2 bath = 14 GPM; 3 bath = 16 GPM
  • Five bedrooms: 1.5 bath = 13 GPM; 2 bath = 15 GPM; 3 bath = 17 GPM

If your home has more than five bedrooms or more than three bathrooms, speak to our pros about capacity and flow rate needs when installing your well.

A Word on Farms

As farmers or those who spend time on farms were likely well aware of before this point, many of the above details change significantly for farm setups. From animal care to irrigation, equipment and several other areas, water needs for farms simply don’t compare to those for standard single-family homes – and your well installation needs will differ as well. While we won’t get into specifics here, our team of well drilling and installation specialists will be happy to detail any of these areas for farmers interested in our services.

For more on water use needs and water well capacity, or to learn about any of our water well drilling and rehabilitation services, speak to the staff at Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC today.

Testing and Removing Iron and Manganese from Well Water

There are several important facets of caring for a water well and it’s drinking water output if you’re a property owner who uses one, and one that’s at or near the top of any such list is preventing contamination. There are a variety of potential contaminants that might make their way into water, from dirt and dust to bacteria and other pathogens – but luckily, there are also time-tested methods for ensuring these contaminants never become a problem in your system.

At Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC, we’ve helped numerous clients deal with and avoid any contamination risks in their water wells. From water well softening for removal of various minerals to water well inspection and testing, we’ll ensure your system stays free of any pathogens or harmful particles that might impact everything from the taste and odor of the water to the health qualities it has once ingested.

Two particular contaminants you will need to watch out for in your water well setup: Iron and manganese. These are common metals that are naturally occurring in some forms of soil, and without proper protection, they may be washed into your drinking water supply from rain and surface run-off that seeps into the ground. However, if you’re experiencing issues with these metals, there are simple solutions to ward them off. Here’s a primer on everything you should know about iron and manganese prevention in water wells.

testing iron manganese well water

Risks of Iron and Manganese in Water

First off, let’s go over a primer on why iron and manganese are undesirable particles in your drinking water. First and foremost, research has shown manganese in particular to be a potentially harmful particle for infants who are fed using formula – infants likely cannot process too much manganese in their system, but formula contains it. For this reason, water used to mix formula must have the lowest level of formula possible. There are also some adults for whom minor health issues may arise due to high quantities of manganese or iron in water.

On top of this, iron and manganese in water are simply annoying and uncomfortable. They give water a metallic taste when it’s consumed, plus can stain various laundry, clog valves or other plumbing components. In some cases, they even make standing water appear to have an oily or crusty sheen on their surface, which makes the water appear disgusting. For these reasons and those above, many prefer to treat their water if it contains iron or manganese in high levels.

Safe Drinking Water Act of 1974

It’s also important to note that the government is aware of these particles in water as well. The Safe Drinking Water Act of 1974, which was set in the same year, set standards for iron and manganese in water – these are generally based on aesthetics, but the same themes apply to health. There are no current state-level health standards for these particles in water, but as we noted, the potential risks to infants and the issues with taste and smell are common reasons why they’re regularly treated.

Testing Formats

One slight positive here is the ease with which iron and manganese can generally be spotted. As we noted earlier, they give off several signs we can pick up with our senses, from their metallic taste to the orange-brown staining they tend to create on bath fixtures and even the odors they sometimes create.

Before jumping straight to treatment if you notice these signs, however, it’s important to test the water and confirm the precise concentration of these elements within it. Tests can also determine the chemical form of these metals, which might be relevant for treatment.

There are two common tests used here: The reduced test and the oxidized test. Both have similar methods, causing the water to turn a specific shade or create solid particles based on the presence of iron or manganese in it. Our team will be happy to recommend the ideal test for your system if you believe iron or manganese are present, or to conduct one of our own professional tests if required.

Treatment Options for Iron or Manganese Issues

If you have tested the water and confirmed not only that iron or manganese are present, but also their concentration levels and precise types, you can move toward treatment options – an area that our well service team is here to help with in a detailed fashion. We have extensive experience with well water inspection and testing in numerous areas and for all sorts of potential contaminants, including iron and manganese.

A couple of the solutions we may recommend here include:

  • Oxidation filtration: This is a treatment and filtration method that actually injects oxygen into the water to remove the impurities created by iron and potentially several other contaminants as well. This format will need some additional chemical treatment, one that includes chlorine bleach, to remove manganese.
  • Reverse osmosis: Also known as point-of-use reverse osmosis, this is a system that is applied to a single tap within the home (multiple osmosis systems can be purchased if you want multiple taps covered). The filter uses a membrane to remove molecules that shouldn’t be in the water, letting pure water pass to the other side. It does use more water than some other systems, but it’s very effective.
  • Water softener: While water softeners are usually used to treat hard water, they can also remove small amounts of reduced iron and manganese using an ion exchange process.

For more on ensuring iron and manganese aren’t contaminating your well water, or to learn about any of our water well drilling, rehabilitation or other services, speak to the staff at Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC today.

Wells Vs. Bottled Water: What Bottled Terms Really Mean

In part one of this two-part blog series, we went over some basics on the myth behind bottled water being purer or healthier than other types. Most forms of bottled water come from the exact same sources as your home’s water, whether a water well or a municipal supply, and much of their reputation has been built on fancy terminology – and in addition, plastic water bottles are a blight on the environment in several ways.

At Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC, we’re here to provide an alternative. We offer a wide range of water well services from basic digging to well pump repair, well rehabilitation and many other solutions to bring you water that’s every bit as pure as you’d find in a bottle, but without the additional negatives that come along with plastic bottles. Today’s part two of our series will go over some of the terms you might see in the bottled water world, and what they’re actually referring to.

wells bottled water terms

Artesian/Bedrock Water

This is a term you might see in certain marketing segments for various bottled water companies. It refers to water from a bedrock well that taps a natural aquifer deep under the ground. This is one of the few legitimate terms in the bottled water world, referring to a type that often has great taste and a higher level of dissolved minerals.

However, as you may have guessed from reading above, guess where this water comes from? That’s right, a well. And while this is a particular type of well, it’s in no way unique to bottled water companies. It can be installed in numerous other areas or settings, including for homeowners.

Sparkling Water

Sparkling water refers to water that’s been pulled from a standard source, usually a tap or well, and then carbonated. It’s different from soda water or tonic water, which are not considered bottled water options.

Natural Water

A broader term here you might see is “natural” water, which just refers to water from any approved underground source – including springs, bedrock wells, mineral water and more. Essentially, any water that’s not from a municipal or public water system falls under this category, so you can see why it’s a misleading term when companies use it.

Glacier Water

This is a rarer form of water, a type sourced directly from a glacier. Many bottled companies claiming this form of water are not being truthful, but some are.

Purified Water

Finally, purified water refers to distilled or de-ionized water that has less than 10 milligrams per liter of dissolved solids. Numerous filtration systems can achieve this purification level, including many water well filters, so again, this is nothing special if you see it listed for your bottled water.

For more on debunking the myth of bottled water being superior to other types, or to learn about any of our water well drilling or rehabilitation services, speak to the staff at Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC today.

Wells Vs. Bottled Water: The Myth of Bottled Water Superiority

Among many people who you’d poll about their basic water preferences, a common answer will be that bottled water is a preference over other types. Some say they prefer the taste, while others feel that bottled water is safer and better for their health than that found from water wells, taps and other sources.

At Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC, we’re here to tell you that in the vast majority of cases, these qualities regarding bottled water compared to other types are nothing but myths. We’ve installed numerous water wells for our clients over the years, bringing them clean, high-quality water that’s every bit as healthy as that you’d find in a bottle – if not more so. This two-part blog series will go over some of the myths out there about bottled water, a key issue with bottled water compared to other formats, and some of the realities of where your bottled water truly comes from (hint: it’s often from a water well).

well bottled water myth

Is Bottled Water “Purer?”

For many, this impression that bottled water is purer and cleaner than other types is the primary reason they prioritize it. But is it really true?

In cases where your home’s water, or another source of water you’re drawing from, is from a poor or contaminated source, bottled water will absolutely be an upgrade. However, in the vast majority of situations, such as when your water supply – be it a water well or any other – is robust and designed to avoid contamination, the water you’ll receive from your tap is virtually identical to what you’ll find in many plastic bottles. Numerous bottled water companies simply use tap or very similar types of water, even many that claim to provide “spring” water.

Bottles and the Environment

In addition to the above, there’s one major downside of drinking bottled water regularly: The impact on the environment. While we wish every person who drank bottled water would recycle where possible, many do not; not only this, but the bottling and shipping processes are also wasteful, and bottling water is a process that has a profoundly negative overall impact on the earth. Frankly, our world would be in a much better place if more people prioritized natural sources of water above plastic bottles.

Our next several sections will go over some of the terms you might hear from a bottled water provider, plus what they’re actually referring to in terms of water source.

Mineral and Spring Water

One of the most popular bottled water marketing techniques today is using terms like “mineral” or “spring” water. But the term “spring” water really just refers to water sourced from any natural area where groundwater comes from beneath soil – as you may have realized, this is very similar to many well or other water drawing formats, just with a fancy-sounding name attached to it. And in other cases, companies claiming this title for their water are really just drawing it directly from a municipal source.

For more on why bottled water’s superiority over other types is a total myth, or to learn about any of our water well digging, repair or rehabilitation services, speak to the staff at Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC today.