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Key Risks of Water Well Contamination

Four generations of experience installing, maintaining and
repairing wells throughout Utah and Wyoming.
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There are a few words you never want to hear when it comes to your water well or any other regular source of water for your home or building, and one of the most common here is “contamination.” Contamination in well water can come about in a few different ways, and is a problem for multiple reasons – but also can be easily enough prevented with the right steps and attention to detail.

At Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC, we’re here to assist clients around Utah with every element of water well drilling and installation, plus long-term maintenance, well inspections and more. Our team is experienced with ensuring contamination is never a risk for your well, whether we’re installing a new well on your property or assisting you with an existing well setup. Here are some of the health and environmental risks that come with contaminated well water, plus some simple ways that these risks can be avoided altogether.

risks water well contamination

Chemical Contamination

One of the more common contamination sources in well water is chemical contaminants, which exist around a number of different potential sources. These can include heavy metals or other dangerous substances that may be present in the soil and seep into groundwater, often through improper disposal practices – think about things like pesticides, fertilizers and even automotive fluids in this area.

In addition to environmental risks, chemical contamination can also lead to a variety of health issues. This may include anything from minor skin irritations and digestive problems to more significant risks like cancer or organ failure – making it all the more important to take careful steps in avoiding these contaminants in your well water.

Bacterial Contamination

Another potential source of contamination is bacteria, which can easily enter the well through various means if proper precautions aren’t taken. The most common dangerous bacteria area around feces, which can come from a few sources and enter soil or groundwater in multiple ways – but there are also other bacterial sources to consider here.

It’s important to note that while some types of bacteria may not be harmful to humans, others can cause serious illness or even death. This is why maintaining a safe well environment and preventing any contamination is so vital – and it’s an area we’re well-equipped to help you with at all times.

Nitrate Contamination

One contamination form that’s less well-known to the public, but still very much a risk in some areas, is nitrate contamination. This occurs when excess nitrates (often from fertilizers or other sources) enter groundwater and elevate its levels – and this can be risky for several reasons. High levels of nitrate in water can lead to severe illness, especially for infants who are particularly sensitive to the substance.

Other Fertilizers or Pesticides

Speaking of fertilizers and pesticides, these are also common sources of well water contamination. As we touched on earlier, improper disposal practices or even runoff from nearby agricultural areas can all contribute to these chemicals entering your well water supply.

To avoid this risk, it’s important to carefully follow instructions for disposing of these substances and to be aware of any nearby agriculture that may impact your well. Regular testing and maintenance of your well can also help catch any potential contamination early on, preventing serious health or environmental risks.

Industrial Activities

Another possible source of contamination is industrial activities, such as manufacturing or mining. These can introduce a variety of dangerous chemicals and substances into the environment, which may then leak into groundwater sources like your well.

If you live near an area with high levels of industrial activity, it’s important to take extra precautions to monitor and maintain your well water quality. This might include regular testing and inspections, as well as working with experienced professionals who can help mitigate any potential risks.

Preventing Well Contamination

While we’ve touched on tips in each of these individual risk areas already, here are some general ways of ensuring water well contamination is never an issue for you:

  • Proper professional installation: Working with experienced professionals for well drilling and installation, like our team at Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC, ensures the well is built to the highest standards of quality and safety.
  • Regular maintenance: Regularly scheduled inspections and maintenance can catch any potential issues early on before they become a serious problem.
  • Careful disposal: As we’ve noted in several areas here, proper disposal methods are key for avoiding contamination. This includes being careful with fertilizers and other chemicals, as well as ensuring any nearby agricultural or industrial activities are not negatively impacting your well.
  • Regular testing: Especially if you live in an area with known risks for certain types of contamination, it’s important to regularly test your well water to ensure its safety.

By following these simple guidelines and working with trusted professionals, you can ensure your well water remains safe and uncontaminated for years to come. Contact us at Mike Zimmerman Well Service LLC today to learn more about our services or schedule an appointment for any well need around Utah!