Routine maintenance and inspection of water wells can help protect water quality, ensure your well is operating properly, prolong the useful life of the well system, and protect your investment. The greatest of all these is the protection of your health, as water quality issues can have adverse health impacts without any detectable indicators.
Small problems can often be identified by performing maintenance before they become costly, inconvenient situations. This is similar to performing routine maintenance on a motor vehicle. If you have the oil changed at specified intervals, the engine will operate reliably much longer than if you do not. Do not become stranded without water over the relatively small cost of an annual service call—the cost of a repair call could be much higher.At a minimum, wells should be evaluated annually by a licensed or certified water well systems professional.
An annual water well checkup should include:
- a flow test
- visual inspection
- a water quality test for coliform and anaerobic bacteria, nitrates, and anything else of local concern
- checking valves
- electrical testing.
A written report should be delivered to you following completion of an annual checkup. The report should include recommendations and all laboratory and other test results. Keep this in a safe place with all other well reports.
If possible, develop a relationship with your preferred well contractor. Similar to any other skilled practitioner, the water well systems professional may be available to advise you over the phone if an issue sounds to be like something worth investigating with a service call, or something that can be noted for the next annual checkup.
Municipal and other public water supply wells are subject to maintenance and inspection as part of utility asset management because they are key parts of a safe water supply. Subject to the same challenges, your private well is your safe water supply, and your NGWA recommends treating it as a valuable asset, which it is.
This document was prepared as the result of review from industry professionals, composed of representatives from among the NGWA membership and duly affected individuals. These included:
- Rick Bolich
- Tom Christopherson
- Gary Hix, RG, CWD/PI
- Larry Lyons
- James McEwan, BS, MS
- Jerri Pohl
- Tom Schneider, MGWC
- John H. Schnieders Ph.D., CPC
- Michael Schnieders, PG, PH-GW
- Russell Tell
- Michael Vaught
- Michael Wiedorn
- Stuart Smith, MS, CGWP
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Disclaimer: This publication is a collaborative effort to try to set forth best-suggested practices on this topic but individual situations and local conditions may vary, so members and others utilizing this publication are free to adopt differing standards and approaches as they see fit. The Association assumes no liability or responsibility for the contents of the publication.