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Thread: Well water testing

  1. #1
    Senior Member nate81's Avatar
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    Well water testing

    I was curious if anyone can recommend a good reliable home testing kit for a private residential well....testing through the local county is around $500

    I have a water softener system and no clue how to use it, but someone mentioned i should have the water tested before turning it back on. When we bought the house it was up and running, but i've since bypassed it and now because our water is 'dirty' and smells of sulphur, i'm interested in reactivating all the equipment i have.
    Intex 16'x48" Ultra Frame
    Intex 2,650-Gallon Sand Filter Pump
    Intex Krystal Clear Saltwater Filtration System
    Taylor K-2006

  2. #2
    Member BayScoutTim's Avatar
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    Re: Well water testing

    Nate81,

    Does your softener have a carbon filter? If so, and I'm pretty sure it does, you have to be careful about restarting the system. The carbon bed grabs and collects, filters, the micro-organisms from your well water. That carbon filter should be "regenerated" every 1 1/2 to 2 years. Failure to regenerate the filter could cause Illness or infection because the collection of micros gets to a toxic level.

    You can regenerate the bed by emptying the carbon out of the tank and soaking it in the sun for a few days. You will also need to sanitize your tank with chlorine. The other option is to replace the carbon in the filter with new.

    You should have a timer and a chlorine pump along with the system. The chlorine will wash over the carbon bed, usually once every 24 hours during the cleansing or backwash cycle.

    Hope that helps. Maybe you could find an independent softener installer to go over the system with you and show you the ropes, or someone else on here might chime in shortly. Pics of the system would help as well. That will show what hardware you have.

    Cheers,
    BayScoutTim
    BayScoutTim
    ---------------------------------------------------
    :: 28' round Doughboy AG (18,400 gallons) :: Hayward 1-1/2 hp Power-Flo Matrix pump :: Hayward Pro Series 21" top mount high-rate sand filter 65GPM :: Hayward Vari-Flo XL 7-way valve :: AquaBot Breeze 4WD :: TF-100 XL test kit :: SpeedStir magnetic stirrer ::

  3. #3
    Mod Squad BoDarville's Avatar
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    Re: Well water testing

    You can get the iron test here: http://tftestkits.net/Single-Item-Tests-c6/. As for the sulfur, chlorine usually takes care of the sulfur smell.
    TFP Moderator 26,680 gal Plaster IGP 3.5 - 10' depth / Attached Waterfall Spa, Manually Chlorinated, Triton Sand Filter, 1.5 HP * 1.1 SF = 1.65 SFHP 1-speed Pentair WhisperFlo WF-26 Pump, 400K BTU NG Teledyne Laars Series One Heater, Polaris 360, Test Kit Comparison, Chlorine/CYA Chart, SLAMing Your Pool, OCLT
    A good test kit is an investment, not an expense.

  4. #4
    Senior Member nate81's Avatar
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    Re: Well water testing

    Quote Originally Posted by BayScoutTim
    Nate81,

    Does your softener have a carbon filter? If so, and I'm pretty sure it does, you have to be careful about restarting the system. The carbon bed grabs and collects, filters, the micro-organisms from your well water. That carbon filter should be "regenerated" every 1 1/2 to 2 years. Failure to regenerate the filter could cause Illness or infection because the collection of micros gets to a toxic level.

    You can regenerate the bed by emptying the carbon out of the tank and soaking it in the sun for a few days. You will also need to sanitize your tank with chlorine. The other option is to replace the carbon in the filter with new.

    You should have a timer and a chlorine pump along with the system. The chlorine will wash over the carbon bed, usually once every 24 hours during the cleansing or backwash cycle.

    Hope that helps. Maybe you could find an independent softener installer to go over the system with you and show you the ropes, or someone else on here might chime in shortly. Pics of the system would help as well. That will show what hardware you have.

    Cheers,
    BayScoutTim

    Thank you so much for your reply! I actually had the 'only' water softener guy in the area come out when we first moved in JUST to show me what I had and how to use it....I paid them a full service call for nothing but answering questions....well, they sent out a mute....this guy wouldn't budge and mumbled and barely got any info out of him. What a total waste of money...i continued to use the system for another 6 months or so and ended up bypassing it....and its been bypassed since.

    Here are the pictures of my setup, I appreciate any insight you have on it!!

    http://imgur.com/BpOpFLh,nyiUk9n,zCPFpu ... ,wzp5zIM#0
    Intex 16'x48" Ultra Frame
    Intex 2,650-Gallon Sand Filter Pump
    Intex Krystal Clear Saltwater Filtration System
    Taylor K-2006

  5. #5
    Member BayScoutTim's Avatar
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    Re: Well water testing

    OK, it's hard to tell by the photo but you do have a carbon bed. The two small tanks are for bleach in one and should feed the carbon bed. The other small tank is for salt and should feed your softener.

    Not real sure why you have the metering pumps on top of those two smaller tanks. It may have something to do with the type of system you have . . . . Rain Soft . . . . Anyway go to goo-gle images and type this in "water softener carbon schematic". It will give you an idea of what you should have. There a some some very easy to understand pictorials of a basic system.

    Hope that helps,
    BayScoutTim
    BayScoutTim
    ---------------------------------------------------
    :: 28' round Doughboy AG (18,400 gallons) :: Hayward 1-1/2 hp Power-Flo Matrix pump :: Hayward Pro Series 21" top mount high-rate sand filter 65GPM :: Hayward Vari-Flo XL 7-way valve :: AquaBot Breeze 4WD :: TF-100 XL test kit :: SpeedStir magnetic stirrer ::

  6. #6
    Senior Member nate81's Avatar
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    Re: Well water testing

    Any idea why I'm using 'caustic soda' and 'Aluminum sulfate' for?

    http://i.imgur.com/UpEbkq4.jpg

    Tank 3 is where my salt goes.

    Tank 2 is where i'm supposed to put 64 oz of clorox, 25 oz of caustic soda, and fill with water.

    Tank 1 i put 20 oz of Aluminum sulfate and fill with water.

    From my basic understanding, Tank 4 contains the carbon, which filters our the unwanted particles from my water.

    I have no clue what Tank 5's purpose is...as well as the extremely large tank to the direct left of tank 5.

    I've managed to find a manual tank 4 (or close enough i guess) I have the Rainsoft RFC 100 h.

    Tank 5 has the model number WSM 50 J 24v/60HZ but google comes up with zero results.
    Intex 16'x48" Ultra Frame
    Intex 2,650-Gallon Sand Filter Pump
    Intex Krystal Clear Saltwater Filtration System
    Taylor K-2006

  7. #7
    Member BayScoutTim's Avatar
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    Re: Well water testing

    Nate81,

    This is getting out my realm of knowledge but just looking at the chemicals being used and your report of "dirty water" tells me you have a water issue. Those sound like chemicals used to treat industrial water for use by boilers and other process equipment, not for drinking. I could be wrong here but it is concerning.

    I think it would be wise to get a water sample to your county extension agency for analysis. I would also contact local well drillers to see what issues they have reported with well water. This is a quote from this web site
    In North Carolina, county health departments are charged with administering well testing programs within their jurisdictions. If you have concerns about the safety of your well water, please contact the appropriate county listed below to request testing.
    As far as the set up goes . . . . If someone before you was treating the well water incorrectly it could have contaminated the entire system rendering it unusable.

    The best first steps would be;
    - have your well head inspected
    - have your water tested directly from the well
    - consider investing in a newly installed treatment system goo-gle this "well water treatment raleigh nc"

    Remember, this is YOUR drinking/cooking water.

    Best regards,
    BayScoutTim
    BayScoutTim
    ---------------------------------------------------
    :: 28' round Doughboy AG (18,400 gallons) :: Hayward 1-1/2 hp Power-Flo Matrix pump :: Hayward Pro Series 21" top mount high-rate sand filter 65GPM :: Hayward Vari-Flo XL 7-way valve :: AquaBot Breeze 4WD :: TF-100 XL test kit :: SpeedStir magnetic stirrer ::

  8. #8
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    Re: Well water testing

    I definitely recommend a full set of water tests... NOT just the basic chemistry, but VOC, metals, gross alpha, etc. You need to have a baseline to understand exactly what is in your water and what parts of your system you NEED (removing harmful stuff from your water) and what parts are cosmetic (cleaning up taste, smell, staining, etc.). Spending the money to get this from a state certified lab is the only way to go and get reliable results.

    Then you can you can make some decisions about what you need to treat the water. I installed my own system. There are some good Internet sites that not only sell the equipment but have support techs that really understand the equipment and how it works as well as common well water issues. Once a system is in place, I also suggest getting a treated water retest on any parameters that were out of acceptable range to confirm it is working properly.

    You mentioned you recently bought the house... are you sure you did not get a full set of well tests from the seller? Many states require that at the time of sale.
    32K gal, gunite, French Gray DB, IntelliFlo VF, IntelliFlo, WhisperFlo, Quad DE 100 filter, IntelliTouch, IC-60 SWG, IntelliChem, Dolphin M5

  9. #9
    Senior Member nate81's Avatar
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    Re: Well water testing

    It was twoyears ago today,ironically enough. That we closed on the house. I dont have any records of any water testing being done.
    Intex 16'x48" Ultra Frame
    Intex 2,650-Gallon Sand Filter Pump
    Intex Krystal Clear Saltwater Filtration System
    Taylor K-2006

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