Driven Well-Too much success! how do I proceed?

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by stevenb, Jun 11, 2008.

  1. stevenb

    stevenb New Member

    Thanks for all the tips guys!
    I live in very low very flat Eastern Shore Maryland. Average rain from May 1st to today should be 4 or 5 inches....we've had 8 inches in that time.

    I put a 1 1/4 x 36" well point down plus a 64 inch length of pipe added.
    With 22 inches stuck out of the ground I reached a pretty tough firm piece of ground down there. So I looked down the pipe and there was water.

    I have 52 inches of water in the pipe, topped out at 22" inches below the surface. How do I proceed, or monitor this situation? If I wanted to pump it out to water a very large garden, how do I determine the proper pump, and gallons per hour capability.
    I'm dumbfounded. Plus I have 3 more sections of 5' pipe!
  2. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    First: If you live anywhere near a farm or commercial facility of any kind, you might want to check that water before using it for much of anything, and especially before ever drinking any of it. Here where I happen to live, water that close to the surface would almost certainly be polluted in some way.

    I would rent a small (1-1/2" or 2") trash pump to develop the well and see what happens. Use some kind of valve (or some clamping pliers) on the end of the discharge hose to get a restricted flow that will fill a 5-gallon pail in about 30 seconds, and if the water keeps coming at that rate until the fuel tank on the pump runs dry, you could assume a flow rate of at least 10 gallons per minute for as long as the overall water table remains as at present.
  3. stevenb

    stevenb New Member

    I'm only going to use the water for the vegetables, fruit trees, and lawn....but that's a good point to check it anyway since it's so shallow.

    I have a Wayne 1/2 HP Self-Priming Portable Utility Pump (1450 GPH)...but I'm afraid it will run water out of the pipe faster than the water can replace. This is just ignorant assumption, I have absolutely no experience in any of this.

    Do I need to get some kind of bladder pump with pressure switch so I can go on and off with the garden water gun?

  4. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    1450 / 60 = 24 gpm / 2 = about what you are looking for

    As long as there is enough flow to keep from burning something up, it will not hurt a pump to restrict its flow. So, put some kind of controllable restriction on the discharge of that pump and do a test at 10 gpm to see whether the well can keep up.

    If garden watering is all you are doing, I would probably use a small bladder tank and something like a CRV (a Continuous Run Valve or Cycle Stop Valve (CSV) from Valveman) so the pump would run continually while you are watering. Continuous (and even restricted) running is good -- continual stopping and starting is bad. Or, and if you know precisely how much flow you need at a given pressure, maybe some of the pros here can help you size the pump so it will run continually and wide open while you are watering.
  5. Bob NH

    Bob NH In the Trades

    New Hampshire
    A 1/2 HP utility pump that delivers 1450 gallons per hour probably has too little head to give satisfactory operation with a sprinkler. I suspect that it is limited to 15 to 20 psi at 24 GPM. Try it and see what you get.

    I would connect it to a sprinkler or hose that would never be completely shut off. Forget the pressure switch and forget the the tank.

    If you want more pressure get a jet pump, which will deliver more pressure but less flow.
  6. PEW

    PEW DIY Senior Member

    Depending on where you are on the eastern shore, you may have run into a clay layer. On the upper eastern shore along the bay, you will run into layers of red or grey clay. As you move south more sand.
  7. stevenb

    stevenb New Member

    New Main Question at bottom of Reply.
    I'm in Wicomico County (Willards). PEW, what you describe as that clay sounds like what I experienced, with a sudden toughening up with the fence post hammer tube.
    My test pumping emptied the pipe quickly and putting a stick down it 5 minutes after the pump emptied the pipe, showed the water replacing almost to the old level. A pitcher pump works fine.

    So.....I am inclined to leave that pipe where it is and use it with a Pitcher Pump for just watering from a can in the greenhouse etc. And drive a new pipe much deeper to hit the Aquifer. One reason being too is this pipe, I was not careful enough to keep it absolutely that would affect me if I tried to go deeper?
    Any comments on this strategy to keep a one shallow well with pitcher pump, and try again for the deeper well with more water?
  8. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    Oil drillers occasionally drill at angles on purpose, and you could always use a couple of elbows to make the visible part vertical.

    Redundancy never hurts, but you might check to see about any local regulations concerning multiple wells. I once asked a well driller about the possibility of a well for a pond I would like to have beside the house, and he told me I should run a line over for my existing well. But if I ever actually get my pond and end up doing that, I will have already put my pitcher pump on a shallow well near where the end of the pond will be.
  9. PEW

    PEW DIY Senior Member

    I'm a bit north of you outside Seaford. We are along the river, lots of sand and could probably have enough water at that depth for irrigation. Down you way for any volume you will need to go deeper. Talk to some folks in your area to see what depths they have gone, and what layers they ran into.

    Have a friend outside Federalsburg where it took 5 wells, this spring, to over 200 feet before he hit water. Even going to the depth of his closest neighbor did not provide any water.

    Does sound like you are into a layer of clay. If you are happy with a pitcher pump, go for it, but you will probably find it dry during the summer. Reaching the aquifer will be beyond a hand driven well.
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