First Time well user / help

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by Ian_in_CO, Jan 23, 2009.

  1. Ian_in_CO

    Ian_in_CO New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Hi everyone.

    Bought a house outside Denver, 420 ft well. Original well (1971) was abandoned and new well put in in 1996.

    I wanted to disinfect with bleach but am having problems getting the well cap off. It appears the well cap resembles one that is used for an 'above ground' installation, as it has 4 nuts and a pipe that is a bit off center, with a flat notched cap on it (only sticks up about 5 inches and doesn't go anywhere). The electrical box is on the side of the casing. I assume there is a pitless adapter as the the water line enters through the basement foundation just below the frost line. Looks similar to the URL below, except the electrical is on the side, and "to house" is capped:

    http://www.soil.ncsu.edu/assist/homeassist/water/spipe.jpg

    The 4 nuts were really rusted, so I sprayed some wd40... a bit later I attempted to unscrew one of the nuts and with barely any pressure, it snapped off flush with the well cap.

    So, I can guarantee the other 3 will do the same, and will relieve the pressure on the seal, but am afraid the bolt side underneath the cap could fall into the well.

    Also, would it be wise to replace this well cap with what I'll call a standard well cap as I see in most images, where the cap is bolted down around the outside of the casing?

    Any thoughts?
  2. Ian_in_CO

    Ian_in_CO New Member

    Messages:
    5
    update

    Sorry.. was doing more reading. It appears the well seal itself is what is fully exposed, and there isn't any cap covering it. So the well seal nuts are rusted to the bolts.

    Considering there is a pipe coming out the top, with a cap on it, is it possible this is actually connected to the pipe coming off the top of the pitless adapter? I wouldn't think so otherwise how else would you pull the seal off?

    Thanks for any help.
  3. sammyhydro11

    sammyhydro11 Previous member

    Messages:
    709
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    I have never come across that setup but i imagine there is a pitless adapter and that pipe that comes through that well seal could be attached to the pitless. Or someone could have just taken a well seal and used it as a well cap and just simply plugged the hole in the seal by inserting a nipple through the hole and capping it. I would remove the cap off the pipe and pry the well seal off the casing. Well seals can be a pain in the rump to get off but working a couple of pry bars on each side at the same time will eventually get it off.

    sammy

    www.tylerwellandpump.com
  4. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    I cut two bolts off with a cutting torch, one on each half of the two pieces on the top so one bolt held the bottom halves and used WD40 under the lip of the two halves of steel and pried'n beat until you get the whole thing out without dropping anything down the hole. Many times the rubber will stick inside the casing and I'd heat the casing to melt it but not start it burning, I used one of those wonder pry bars to get under the lip and then an adjustable wrench to twist it. If I got one half to come up some I'd cut the rubber about 2/3rds the diameter of the casing, through the slit in the two halves of steel and once you get inside the casing, pry the other half out. In other words ya kinda make it up as you go. You've got to get the bolts loose some without anything falling down the hole. If you get a piece of steel off, use vise grips to hold the cut off bolt(s). There's a bunch of 'art' in there somewhere.
  5. Ian_in_CO

    Ian_in_CO New Member

    Messages:
    5
    update

    I found the well invoice i was give when I bought the house. Installed 1996. Parts list is showing a pitless adapter. 21' of 6 5/8 OD steel casing.

    Would you recommend I replace with a well cap? If so, should i just seal the electrical conduit hole in the new cap since the electrical is already running through a seperate hole in the side of the casing? Or perhaps remove the electrical from the casing side, and re-run through the new well cap (I would then still have to seal the hole in the side of the casing).

    I suppose either way will work.

    Opinions appreciated.
  6. sammyhydro11

    sammyhydro11 Previous member

    Messages:
    709
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Yeah the easiest way would be to plug the conduit hole in the well cap. I would check the water level in the well casing though. If it's close to the top of the well, it might rise to the top in the summer time and would put your electrical connection under water. To resolve that you can plug the conduit coming into the casing with some silicone sealant and do a water proof heat shrink connection.

    sammy

    www.tylerwellandpump.com
  7. Ian_in_CO

    Ian_in_CO New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Just an update...

    I managed to get the seal off, in several pieces I might add. The upper and lower (with 1" rubber between) were plastic. The pipe sticking out the top does indeed screw into the top of the pitless adapter. Fortunately I was able to get the seal off around the pipe.

    The part I find funny (not really) is the electrical running through a welded 3" long pipe out the side of the casing had nothing sealing the entry with the wires. Is this normal? What would be the point of a well seal, if it's completely exposed anyways? The electrical box was cracked open, dead insects inside and what not. Crazy.

    So my real question is, can I remove the pipe that is screwed into the top of the pitless adapter so I can fit a well cap on? Or is it wise to keep the pipe screwed on, but cut it shorter so the cap will fit over the top of the casing? I suppose I would be affraid of oxidation forming on the open threads and not being able to screw the pipe back in if the pump needed to be lifed out.

    Thoughts?

    Thanks again.
  8. sammyhydro11

    sammyhydro11 Previous member

    Messages:
    709
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Someone had no idea had to properly set that up. A hole should have never been drilled into the casing for the wire. I would seal that nipple the best you can where the wire feeds into the casing. Cutting that pipe is a bad idea. You need to have some of that pipe sticking up so a tee handle can be threaded on top of it allowing you to hammer upwards to loosen the pitless. I would definitely remove that pipe and get a good well cap on the well. When the time comes to service the pump you simply take the cap off and thread the pipe back into the pitless so the pump can be removed.

    sammy

    www.tylerwellandpump.com
  9. Ian_in_CO

    Ian_in_CO New Member

    Messages:
    5
    thanks... last question

    Trying to find a good online source for a decent well cap. I'm finding cast iron, aluminum, and ABS plastic?.. definitely want a 2 piece cap. I've come across DeanBennet (happens to be here in Denver) BakerMonitor (manufacturer, not sure where to buy); grainger, seems they only have a 6".

    Mine's a 6 5/8 OD (thickness has gotta be like an 1/8th or something).

    Whatever you recommend I'll definitely order..

    thanks again...
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