Sulfur/Manganese and well disinfecting ?

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by rstier, Jun 28, 2005.

  1. rstier

    rstier New Member

    Messages:
    17
    Hi,
    I have a 275' deep drilled well and we are experiencing the "rotten egg" smell. We have a Culligan Water Conditioner for the hard water and a Reverse Osmosis system for clean tap water. That being said, odor is the only issue right now.

    We are currently on a tight budget, so before we spend money on a system to treat odor as well (Fleck or similar), I wanted to try disinfecting the well. I guess my question is, does this sound like something worth trying and if so, what should we use to disinfect the well :confused: ?. It appears most bleach now including Clorox have other chemicals besides chlorine. Is that an issue? Thanks in advance for your responses!
    Ron
  2. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    By pass the softener and flush the lines and see if the odor is stil present. If so then it is coming in from the well. If not then sanitizing the softener is in order.

    Shocking isn't always bad but IMO it is overdone from a water quality and a few other points of view. Shocking a well can cause water quality problems that without testing for THMs (trihalomethanes) or specific DPBs (disinfection by products) you won't know exist; or were created. It can also cause pump problems and water treatment equipment problems that should be by-passed first and then sanitized independently and properly. Shocking can also cause migration of dirty chlorinated water to neighbors' wells which if that happens upsets them more than a bit... Shocking can also cause other problems in the well, like bacteria caused slime production and encrustation formation which can lead to reduction in recovery rate and submersible pump problems. Chlorine alone can not penetrate the slime or encrustations and using more chlorine raises the pH of the water and pH above about 7.2 results in chlorine being less effective. It also becomes less effective in the future due to the slime and encrustations.

    If you shock, FDA approved chlorine pellets are best but non-scented regular bleach works but Chlorox labels say not for water treament... Do not use pool chlorine.

    Gary
    Quality Water Associates
  3. rstier

    rstier New Member

    Messages:
    17
    Great info Gary, thanks!....I should have mentioned that I did sanitize the brine tank of the water conditioner about 2 weeks ago and that did not help remedy the egg odor. I basically removed all the remaining salt and used a bleach/water combo to scrub it.

    What else would you suggest aside from sanitizing? Would you suggest another system to add to our mix which deals with this particular odor issue? If so, any brands/models in particular? We have 3 baths in the house and it is just my wife and infant son.
  4. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    The odor isn't coming form the brine tank, or at least I've never herad of that anyway. It comes from the resin bed and bacteria that can colonize it and the bacteria produce the gas that causes the smell.

    So, mix a 1/3 cup of nonscented bleach in a gallon of water and pour it down the brine well or through the salt into the brine water. Then a glass or two of nonbleach water to rinse the chlorine off any metal and do a manual regeneration. That will sanitize the bed and hopefully remove the odor for some time. Chlorine damages resin, so don't use more than a 1/3 to 1/5 cup and dilute it.

    Gary
    Quality Water Associates
  5. rstier

    rstier New Member

    Messages:
    17
    Thanks Gary, I'll give it a shot. Would the next step if this doesn't work be the Sulphur remover system added before the water conditioner?
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2005
  6. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    You need to determine the cause of the odor, naturally ocurring H2S or bacteria caused in the well. If bacteria, like SRB (sulfate reducing bacteria) you have to kill it, if natural H2S the nyes, 'sulfur' treatment equipment. I suggest an inline pellet chlorinator, special mixing tank and then a Centaur carbon filter to clarify the water and remove the chlorine. Which works on either type of 'sulfur' problem and costs less than any other type of equipment.

    Gary
    Quality Water Associates

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