No Water, Gravel and Ear Wigs, OH MY!

We have a customer in Brighton, MI we had installed a new water treatment system for one year ago.  They called to say they had no water and that a well company had been out to look at the same problem a few days ago.  They had water for a couple days then it went out again and asked if we could help.  We had them by-pass all the water treatment equipment while on the phone with them and they immediately had water but very low volume.  We promptly went to their home to asses the problem.  The customer told us the well company had re-pressurized the well tank because it was low on air and they adjusted the pressure switch up because that was their problem.  This customer has an AIO filtration system and water softener to treat their high iron and hydrogen sulfide problem along with extremely hard water.  We disconnected the iron filtration system and discovered the inlet was totally plugged with gravel from the well.  Luckily the check valve on the inlet to the AIO had stopped all the gravel from getting into the filtration system.

We proceeded to run the outside hoses to flush what we could out of the well tank and lines. After a short burst of gravel and discolored water everything looked fine.  We then attempted to flush the inlet lines to the water treatment system and discovered they were totally blocked with gravel and sediment.  After ten minutes of flushing the lines finally cleared to the point where the water started to clear up.  We were flushing the water inlet line into a five gallon bucket to see if it was clearing up and what was coming out of the water line.  The gravel finally cleared up then we started to get particles floating on the water.  Earwig parts!  Now we had another problem!  We inspected the well cap and discovered the bolts were very loose and the top of the well and cap were full of earwigs and spiders!

Example of an insect infested well.

A bad seal or cracked well cap can cause big problems!
At this point we basically have to shut the well down because it is not safe to use.  As the earwigs die off they contaminate the well with coli-form bacteria.  The screen on the well pump had a whole in it letting in all the gravel also so we called the well company we refer and they came out that day.  As it turns out the pump needed to be replaced, the well had to be flushed of the debris and bugs/earwigs and afterword the entire system was sanitized along with the house to assure no more bacteria was present. We then sanitized all of our equipment and re-bed the iron filtration system.  A water sample was sent out to a third party water lab to certify the well as bacteria free again and safe to drink.

The moral of this story? Don,t take your private well or your water well for granted.  The well should be inspected every three years and the water tested for bacteria and other things such as arsenic.

Knowing your water is safe for you and your family brings peace of mind and a better quality of life.

Below you will find links to important information related to topics in this article:

Homeowners Guide to Your Well.

Insect in Water Wells

Well Care Information Sheets

Well Care Information: Well Caps

Good Water, Good Life!

Ray McConnell
Beauchamp Water Treatment and Supply
872 N Old US 23 Brighton, MI 48114
810 632 2000
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No Water, Gravel and Ear Wigs, OH MY!
No Water, Gravel and Ear Wigs, OH MY!
Reviewed by Merlyn Rosell
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Rating : 4.5