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well water

Old 07-16-2007, 10:30 PM
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Default well water

I have just moved and now have well water for the first time in my life. I have the filtration system that I just add salt, and a reverse osmosis system that just requires a filter change. The thing I am a bit confused by is the neutralizing system because we have an acid shallow well. I was told by the last owner to mix 4lbs of soda with 4 gal of water and put in the neutralizing container. However, when I do the water gets cloudy for a while afterwards. Does this sound normal? is there a premixed liquid to buy that is better than mixing soda and water?
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Old 07-16-2007, 11:32 PM
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You have a PM

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Old 07-17-2007, 12:53 AM
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If you have acidic water, you should have an acid neutralizer tank. This is filled with a media that oddly enough neutralizes the acid in your water, making it PH neutral. This is especially important if the home has copper pipes. Acidic water will eat the pipes from the inside out and you start to get pin-hole leaks. Acid neutralizer tanks are easy to install - they go in-line right after your ballast tank before your water heater supply/house supply oin the cold side. You'll need 110vac and a dump line for the backwash cycle. Probably a plumbers job, but if you're handy, you can do it yourself.
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Old 07-17-2007, 07:13 AM
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Default Re: well water

If you need a neutralizer, water softener, and a RO system i think you've got problems with your well. Tell us some things about the well (depth, construction, age, etc.) It may be cheaper in the long run to drill a deeper well into an aquifer with better water quality.
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Old 07-17-2007, 07:34 AM
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Hydro - 7/17/2007 7:13 AMIf you need a neutralizer, water softener, and a RO system i think you've got problems with your well. Tell us some things about the well (depth, construction, age, etc.) It may be cheaper in the long run to drill a deeper well into an aquifer with better water quality.
Agreed, or if possible, hook up to city water. I have a well that requires no treatment of any kind, if it becomes any kind of hassle, I'll connect in a second.
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Old 07-17-2007, 07:52 AM
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Default Re: well water

I wish we had the option of city water. For some reason they ran sewer to the home but did not run water. This is the state capital of MD. I dont know why they didnt run the water. The RO system is just for water taste and not necessary. To my understanding all wells need a neutralizer and softener in our area if you have shallow well. If you have a deep well, you battle a ton of iron and other contaminates. It is a pick your battle thing. Thanks for the feedback.

I have to run to meeting and I will email your bro welder. Thanks!
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Old 07-17-2007, 01:59 PM
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Default Re: well water

B-Faithful,

I live just ouside Annapolis and only require nuetralizer on my well water system.
Mine is simply a 30 gal. tank with a chemical injector pump sitting on top of it and plugged into the same line as the well pump. Well pump on, injector pump on.

Chemical mixes with the water in a holding tank that is placed between the pressure tank and the house supply. It's pretty simple to service and the cheapest place to buy liquid Sodium Hydroxide is the farm supply store right there on Riva Rd.

I mix 4 gallons of soda into the 30 gallon tank. Water does not cloud up. It will if you add too much and the water will also feel slimey to the touch.

Happy to give more info if needed.
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Old 07-17-2007, 06:29 PM
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I'm still more concerned about your current well construction and depth, B-Faithful. See if you can get any info. on it and post back here or PM me. Shallow wells are usually more vulnerable to contamination from surface spills, septic systems, etc. Do you have any potential sources of contamination near the wellhead?

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Old 07-17-2007, 09:34 PM
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I know nothing about wells. As I said before this is my first home with well water after growing up in NJ, going to school in SC, and living in 2 other places here in the Annapolis area. Here is what I know.

1. Shallow wells here tend to be acidic, deep wells extremely high in iron. I have a shallow well. neighbor had a deep well dug as her shallow well dried up. She has bottled water delivered for consumption.
2. Community has public sewer. I dont know why they didnt run water at the same time - The home has an Annapolis address but is 4 miles from downtown. I cannot think of any contaminates other than yard chemicals which I am not sure if I should try to avoid.
3. Home is less about 300 feet from the Magothy River at the mouth of the Chesapeake, a brackish river. Not sure if that impacts the water quality.

I called Culligan, the water company, today and they no long sell the the liquid neutralizer after too many chemical burns by the users. They only offer the light ash soda. They also said that there standard mixture was about 7lbs of soda to 12 gal of water. The previous owner of my home who was a naval engineer said that the system was adjusted for 4lbs of soda with 4gal of water. I dont know. I plan to get a professional out when my tanks get down some as I just filled them up. I may try another company too to see what they say.

As my buddy said... I am going back to the stone ages

I love the home though. (I just want to get this water thing figured out and have my old home sold )
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Old 07-18-2007, 11:53 AM
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Culligan is the pits, not much help other than selling whatever is new this year.

Go to Bowens on Riva Rd. Even when Culligans was selling the stuff, Bowens was half the cost. The PH nuetralizer is not a big deal. I have been dealing with mine now for 20 years and it is alot simplier than other water treatment devices. Luckily, I don't need any of those other devices.

On the subject of deep vs shallow, the biggest problem comes from lay people giving advice on what constitutes deep or shallow. I live 100 feet from the South river, my well is 286 ft deep. One neighbors well is 60ft deep and another is around 150, both consider themselves as having deep wells. Would that make mine super deep ? I don't know. What I do know is that any of my neighbors that have jetpump wells instead of submersible pump wells have the most problems and require the most treatment devices.

One water treatment business that I have found to be knowledgable and forthwright is Phelps on Mayo Rd in Edgewater. I have no affilation with them, don't even buy my chemicals from them, but have bought various fittings, supplies and pressure tanks from them over the years and the are good folks to work with.
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Old 07-18-2007, 12:08 PM
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Default Re: well water

colmbarry, thanks for the post. I am going to talk with Hague as they have an office down the street but appreciate your response and will look there if I dont feel comfortable with Hague.

As far as deep vs shallow wells. i dont have a clue. I dont even know how deep mine is.. At the home inspection I just asked if it worked well and if the water quality checked out to be good.
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Old 07-18-2007, 05:43 PM
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You're right to be cautious about the water treatment salespeople in general. Do you have a copy of the water quality analysis done before closing? If we could get a look at that, it might help. Suggest you consider talking to one or two of the local well drillers and ask them if they have had any success drilling wells in your area that don't require treatment. I still think a deeper well could be a good investment for you in the long run. You've already got a softener, so even if you had elevated iron, your existing softener should be able to take care of that.
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