Nothing provides more peace of mind for rural homeowners that positive results of a well water quality review. And, timely well water treatment provides added personal security for Waukesha WI and Lake County residents.
Being a responsible homeowner, you need to be proactive and regularly evaluate your well’s water quality. That means regularly have a qualified professional test it. Professionals recommend testing and evaluation annually. Twice a year is a wise choice when conditions warrant it. There are dozens of contaminants that can creep into your water supply and impact your well water quality in a short time. If you own the well the quality of its water is 100% your responsibility.
Best Time For A Water Quality Review
It’s important to schedule a regular annual inspection of your well, its water and all its components. There are several factors that go into choosing the best time. If you have any doubts, Spring and Fall make sense. Would it be easy to schedule a test around the same time daylight savings time begins/ends? It would be easy to remember.
While there are several contaminants to test for, the top two are bacteria and nitrate. Spring is the time of year bacteria tends to enter well water through wintertime snow melt and runoff. The heavier the snowmelt the more chances of coliform bacteria in ground water.
Midsummer and fall are periods when testing often reveals some of the highest levels of bacteria. Bacteria levels climb with heat and humidity before leveling off after a deep freeze.
Nitrates are found in animal waste and fertilizers. Increased nitrate levels reflect surface activities in the area. If there’s a lot of construction in your area, or farmland subjected to fall plowing – with manure added – there are opportunities for nitrate to enter the ground water. Soil is a great natural filter, but it cannot catch it all.
Don’t rely on the calendar. If you notice something unusual like an odor, taste or its appearance, have your water tested. Any unexpected changes are clues it’s time to test.
Inspect More Than Just The Water
Things change during the year. Did your yard flood after a stormy weekend, or was the lawn parched from lack of rain? Did you “nudge” the well cap with the mower once or twice? A visual inspection of the well water system impacts an overall review of your water quality as well. Your inspection doesn’t mean opening things up and taking them apart.
Insects offer clues. Bugs, especially those ugly earwigs, carry coliform bacteria inside them. Even the best “bug-proof” well caps cannot keep them all out. The first place to check is the well cap and all electrical conduit for openings, cracks and leaks.
It seems simple, but here are a few suggestions of things to keep in mind:
- Take care using lawn mowers and other equipment near the well.
- Don’t spray pesticides too close to the well cap.
- Don’t place a covering over the well cap and conduit – the old-fashioned coffee can or rusting pail are out.
Homeowners have been known to come up with creative ways to hide the well cap. Using everything from fake rocks and flower beds to shrubs and mini wishing wells. The best solution is to get used to the exposed pipe and keep it clear of these things. Flowers, shrubs and long grass attract bugs and other critters. Fresh airflow is important to the efficient operation of your well.
Summer is the season with the greatest demand on water systems, so stresses and contaminants are likely to show up in fall and early winter. Evaluating water systems and completing in-depth water testing now makes sense. You don’t want water-related problems during a long, cold winter, do you?
What Your Water Quality Tests Look For
What should you have your water tested for? Routine testing looks for:
- Bacteria— specifically coliform bacteria, a disease carrying bacteria that can seriously impact your family’s health.
- Nitrate — a free form of nitrogen causing serious illness, especially to children under the age of six months. Also an indicator of other contaminates in the water. Unless you have reason to believe there’s a problem in the area, older wells need not be tested for nitrates as often as newer ones – unless you’ve had a positive test.
- Chloride — High concentrations of chloride may indicate contamination from a septic system a nearby landfill, fertilizer or road salt.
- Alkalinity— indicates the water’s likelihood to be corrosive.
- Corrosivity— testing to indicate if water may corrode household fixtures or if lime deposits will build up in pipes.
- Hardness — Determines whether or not you need a water softening system.
- Lead— Lead leaches into well water from old lead pipes and solder. Itt can become a serious health concern.
Rely On Professionals For Water Quality Review
Schoenwalder Plumbing’s skilled, licensed plumbers are ready to review your well water system from top to bottom. We’ll provide expert advice on how to best keep your system running at peak efficiency.
Are you ready for a series of fall water quality tests? Call Schoenwalder Plumbing at 262-542-7908 or email us to make an appointment to get a thorough water test and system review. Our certified plumbers can recommend and install an appropriate system upgrades and make necessary repairs. Taking good care of your drinking water system is worth the extra effort, isn’t it? It’s a commitment to the health and wellbeing of your entire family. Sign up for a Schoenwalder Plumbing in-depth water quality review anywhere in Waukesha WI and the Lake Country.