How do I filter my well water?

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by hosky, Oct 31, 2008.

  1. hosky

    hosky New Member

    Messages:
    32
    This whole well thing is new to me.

    1600 ft free flow well. Here is my water flow from well to house.

    Well head water goes to bottom of 220 gal galvenized tank. Water comes from mid to lower 1/3 of tank to 1 1/2 hp pump (50 psi), then passes small air tank. Water then passes pressure switch to large canister filter, then to house.

    Well -- tank -- pump -- air tank -- pressure switch -- filter -- house.


    My problem is that my filter is clogging up to the point that I have no water in the house. I have a faucet between the pump and the filter. When the filter is clogged the water here is muddy looking. What can I do to clean the water better before it gets to the filter so I don't have to change the $25 filter daily?

    (I posted a new thread to help others that may have this problem)

    -Hosky

    Thanks for all your help
  2. drick

    drick In the Trades

    Messages:
    392
    Hi,
    There are people here that can help you with this, but you need to do a water test first, otherwise they would just be guessing as to your problem. I would need to know iron, maganese, ph, and hardness at a minimum. It would also be good to know the GPM flow rate of your pump.

    Your 220 gallon retaining tank will help to separate out some of the stuff in the water, however you need to drain some water off the bottom of the tank every day to get rid of the dirt-iron-etc that collects there. For example I have a 120 gal retaining tank and I have a valve on the bottom of the tank that I open for two minutes every day. The output pipe for your house water should be a foot or so off the bottom of the tank.

    You are going to need some sort of back washing filter but beyond that nobody can really give good advice without the water test results.

    Also I would keep up with the flushing of the well -minus the chlorine. Open up the faucet closest to the well and let it run for a hour a couple of times a day (assuming this won't run the well pump dry). You said that you recently moved into the house. Was it vacant for a while before you moved in? If so it could be that the well needs a good flushing out. Same goes for the tank.

    What do your neighbors do for water filtration? Do they have the same/similar problems and deep wells?

    -rick
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2008
  3. hosky

    hosky New Member

    Messages:
    32
    Thanks Rick,

    The house has only had bachelors living in it for the last several years (1 shower a day, gone to work most of the day type of thing) My closest neighbor is about 2 miles away and I think they are on a water system. I think that part of the problem is that I am demanding more water now then it is used to supplying.

    I will work on getting the water tested.

    How do I find out the GPM?

    -Hosky
  4. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    Your heavier use is likely stirring sediment settled at the bottom of your tank, and like Rick has essentially said, a good flush could be helpful. So, open that spigot between the pump and your filter (after connecting a hose to direct the flow away, if necessary) and just let the water run from the well and through the tank until the tank is clear. My son-in-law and I spent about an hour flushing the crud from the bottom of a 20-gallon water heater a few days ago, so your large tank might take quite a while ... but at that point, your filter should last much longer when it is only having to deal with new particles from the well after the buildup in the bottom of your tank has at least been reduced.
  5. hosky

    hosky New Member

    Messages:
    32
    Thanks lee...

    This is my delima with that, after the filter clogged the first time I opened a valve on the bottom of the tank (hooked to a hose) and let the water run overnight (about 830 pm to 800 am next morn) the water was crystal clear the next morn. Put a new filter on and went about normal use. However, around 6pm the second night the filter was stopped up and the water coming out was murky. I am getting water tested monday...

    Water input is about 8 inches from bottom on right side of tank
    Independent output with valve on left side about 8 inches up
    House supply on right about 2 feet from bottom

    while flushing I close off house supply and open independent supply with water source open. How can I flush out that 8 inches below the valve?

    The filter that was on the house when I moved in had 1/2 in of green slimy junk on it but I still had water in the house. My new filter looks clean and new but I have NO water...go figure.

    I really appreciate all of you guys (and gals) helping me with this.

    -Hosky
  6. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    Personally, I doubt water testing is going to do much for you, and cleaning the sediment out of that tank is probably not going to be easy. Depending upon its shape and location, I would attempt to disconnect it completely so I could flush all the crud out of a hole turned to the bottom.

    As you might already suspect, getting no water at all likely means some junk is blocking flow somewhere. If I understand your system's layout, be careful to keep your pump from burning up if it is getting no water from the tank.
  7. hosky

    hosky New Member

    Messages:
    32
    The water stopping is actually my filter stopping up from all the debris in the tank. I am trying to figure out how to stop most of this debris before it gets to the filter and let the filter --filter out the smaller stuff.... This whole thing is giving me a headache.....
  8. Roadtrash

    Roadtrash New Member

    Messages:
    6
  9. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    You probably have bought a smaller (micron rated) particular filter cartridge than you need or was installed before. We can't see particles smaller than 45 micron, a 5 micron will block up very much quicker than a 50 micron but...

    Take the cartridge out, all the heavier particles will not be able to get up and out of the housing and teh lighter stuff will settle in your pressure tank.

    The type of pressure tank you have is difficult to impossible to clean out. And the way the water goes in is probably always stirring up dirt. And if there is air in the tank in contact with the water, any iron will be oxidized into rust particles tha twill settle to the bottom to be stirred up later. I'd replace it with a correctly sized captive air precharged type tank. Speedbump sells a good one, cheap.

    You can have a lot of iron in the water in the well and it can be converting to rust (ferric iron) and you pump it out when you start using water after not using any for a period of time, like over night. That's why you need a water test.

    Test for ph, iron, TDS, hardness, Coliform bacteria, and it would be nice to see the chlorides, sulfates and nitrate.

    Is there an odor in this water on either the hot or cold side?

    Is there an oily film on the water in the toilet tanks?

    Any clear to black slime at or under the water line in the toilet tanks?
  10. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    I might be wrong here, Gary, but I believe he has a free-flowing well that fills the reservoir tank in question and from which his pump then draws water for the house.
  11. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    Ah yes, I see you are right. I should have said storage tank instead of pressure tank. The rest still applies.
  12. hosky

    hosky New Member

    Messages:
    32
    I really do appreciate all of you helping me, I am getting my water tested tomorrow. I will ask for the things that you mentioned Gary.

    Water has no odor, no oily film. Only some black sludge in the bottom of the commode tanks (2) that I flushed out. Not sure how long that has been there.

    Air in the tank? How do I know? I have an air valve on the top of the tank that started burping out water every time the pressure pump turns off. Just a little spray. Don't know if that has anything to do with it or not.

    I can let the water flow from the bottom of the tank overnight and it is crystal clear the next morn.

    -Hosky
  13. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    Can you take a few pictures of this tank and pump etc. and post them here?
  14. hosky

    hosky New Member

    Messages:
    32
    If I let the water free flow from the well to the tank then out of the side of the tank to the ground overnight the water is crystal clear coming out. Seems like the well water is clear then. However if I let the water sit in the tank for a day or so without using it, it is cloudy and appears to have sand or grit in it. This leads me to think that the tank is causing my "dirty water" problems. I mean the water is visibly dirty much less drinkable. I am still getting the water tested.
  15. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    Yes, at least visibly so, but particles are still settling along the way between the tank's inlet and outlet.

    The path of flow inside the tank changes slightly when a different outlet is used, and sediment is again stirred. If you have a spigot somewhere between your pump and your filter, try letting it run for a while and I bet it will clear.

    Have you looked for a plug in the bottom of your tank? It will likely be virtually impossible to remove if there is one, but a good flush is what your tank needs.
  16. hosky

    hosky New Member

    Messages:
    32
    Here are the pictures the well, pump, and filter...

    [​IMG][/IMG]


    [​IMG][/IMG]
  17. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    I hope the Plumbers Forum guys don't see these pics.

    Why the big galvanized tank? I don't see any purpose for it.

    If it were for retention, you should have seperated the in and out pipes a little more than you did. Like going in the bottom and coming out the top.

    I didn't see the well, but I see an above ground pump and a strange looking fitting in the front of the first picture that I don't recognize.

    bob...
  18. hosky

    hosky New Member

    Messages:
    32
    Hey bob thanks for the reply... if you browse through the earlier posts you will see that I just bought this house (well included) it was like this when I bought it. I am trying to get clean water into the house and this is what I have to work with....I am willing to change what I need, I just don't know what that is......

    My understanding is that this is a free flow well with the source coming from the cast hub located to the left of the clear filter housing.
  19. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    Ok, I see now, the pump is pulling from the galvanized tank and the water is coming from that hub looking thing. Is this the actual well?

    I would get rid of the galvanized tank. I see no reason for it being used as it is. I don't like so called whole house filters, so I would get rid of that.

    I'm sure others have told you to get water tests done. Then get the proper equipment for the job. Maybe a softener, iron filter, both maybe?

    Glad you weren't the one to do that plumbing job. The plumbers here would have banned you for getting the bad plumbing of the year award.:p

    I didn't get a real good look at the pump either, but I think I saw a stainless steel band around the pump housing. If so, the pump is not of the highest quality either. At least you have a good Flexcon tank.

    bob...
  20. hosky

    hosky New Member

    Messages:
    32
    Ok so my water is drinkable. Did not find out about chlorides and things. It was a free test so I can't complain.

    I had a well man come and look at my well. He pulled the tank pressure washed the inside and reset it. Moved the connections higher on the sides than the original and going to see what that does. I know that I will lose water amount by having connections closer to top but I can fix that later if this gets my water clean!!

    -Hosky
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