New Well, Dirty water, but everything seems opposite/backwards?

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog. Water is life.' started by Michael, Jul 18, 2019.

  1. Michael

    Michael New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2019
    Location:
    Eureka MT
    Hi there

    I would first like to say thank you for taking the time out of your day to read and hopefully help me out, I have been reading ALOT of posts about New wells and dirty water, & to run and KEEP running the water for weeks, etc.. etc... to get the well developed/ clean water, But my problem seems completely bass-ackwards.

    My problem is that the water is coming clean but only when the yard hydrants (1 or 3 all running it dosen't matter) are running full tilt flow. Initially when the hydrant is turned on, there is a bit of silt (minimal which settles to the bottom of a bucket after some time) & after 5-10 minutes running fully open (currently), it comes clean with no sediments. Great.. until.. you choke the flow down to a half or 3/4 of the speed, which then the water becomes silty and dirty.
    *should be noticed that expected GPM flow rates from charts at given depths/ feet are accurate.

    I have been flowing full tilt for a 1-3 hours a day for the past 7-9 days
    until I started taking notes the past 3-4 days

    Day A
    full flow- 5-45 minutes (getting faster everyday)

    Day B
    3/4 flow rate: it doesn't clear up/ mud for 2 hours. Open it up full throttle, cleans up again with in 45 min.

    Day C
    Full throttle- little silty to start, 15 minutes a little muddy, 2 hours clear



    *300 ft total depth, pump currently set at 278 ft
    Static water 135'
    6 inch metal casing (air drilled and welded)


    Well Information:
    - 300ft TD @ recovery rate of 60(ish) gpm, bucket measurement taken over flowing well for 3 hrs periodically

    0-60 yellow sand with gravel
    60-180 yellow clay with gravel (hit a little water at 125)
    180-240 grey clay
    240-260- grey clay with gravel
    260- 280 fine gravel/ sand (hit water at 265) Flowed at 17 gpm (decided to go one more stand)
    280-300 (TD) gravel about (3/4 crush sized).


    Equipment Ran:
    Webtrol 35 gpm pump end (WT3550L)
    Franklin Electric 5 hp motor, 3 phase, 60 hz, 230V
    Franklin Electric Sub Drive 300, Nema 4
    3 check valves
    1.5" drop pipe
    1 1/4 water lines to 3 hydrants.
    30 g pressure tank set at stock (50psi)




    Does anyone have any suggestions, Keep flowing, am I overflowing the well, flow on 1/2 flow longer, flow full tilt????etc.. Maybe this is normal but I haven't came across a thread like this yet.. I am sorry if theres one out there that I missed as I am new to the forum.

    Thank you so much for your time and I look forward to hearing from you!
     

    Attached Files:

  2. valveman

    valveman Cary Austin Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    Occupation:
    Pump Controls Technician
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    That is a strange one. It might have something to do with the changing water level in the well. When the water comes back up it could be rinsing a muddy zone somehow. If you have the subdrive with the switch, not the transducer, it could be the pump surging that causes that. But to develop a well you do whatever makes it mud up, then pump it out and do it again. If that means running hard 24/7 or turning it off and on letting the well level change, then that is what you do. But make sure it is not a pump problem first.
     
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  4. VAWellDriller

    VAWellDriller Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2012
    Occupation:
    Mud rotary well driller, pump installer
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    More construction details? How much casing? Is it open hole, well screen? Grout? Cuttings log seems like it should be a screened well. Drilling is a regional thing and I'm a long way away, but it would be better drilled mud rotary and a screened, gravel packed well installed.
     
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  5. Michael

    Michael New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2019
    Location:
    Eureka MT
    Valve man Thanks for the Reply, it certainty is a strange one, its been having me scratch my head for the past 10 days. If it was clear during low flow and dirty when high flow it would make complete sense. To answer your question I do have the Subdrive with a switch, and there is a couple different SW 1 (switch settings) maybe I should try using one of the different configurations/ settings as I didnt think it could be the pump surging as the pressure is constant out of the hose (no flucuation what so ever in flow) but that could be the VFD/ pressure tank doing its job as well, would you see/ notice Pump surge / fluctuation in flow with the VFD/ pressure tank hooked up?

    Also in order "to develop a well you do whatever makes it mud up, then pump it out and do it again" do you suggest I put it half flow and dont turn it off until it comes clean, or do you mean make it mud up as in turn it off and on to get it "sluffing" in on itself over and over again.. Ive worked on a drilling rig for oil and gas and "mudding up" was using other chemicals to increase the viscosity in order to aide in pumping out fragments etc.. I cant see anyone pumping/ putting anything down well to cause an increase in Vis inorder to pump out/ develop the well...?
     
  6. Michael

    Michael New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2019
    Location:
    Eureka MT
    VAWellDriller, to answer your question, there was qty: 15 joints of 20' , 6- 5/8" OD casing which was stick welded. It is a screened well with bentonite-based grout. It was not gravel packed, I asked the driller if it was required and he stated no, I then called the 2 local pump guys, and they also said that the use of a gravel pack is not a common practice in the region/ area (further confirmed with neighbors and they all dont have a gravel pack either)
     
  7. valveman

    valveman Cary Austin Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    Occupation:
    Pump Controls Technician
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    What is called a "rock well" does not need gravel pack. Many times they are not even cased all the way to the bottom. Gravel pack helps a lot if you have large sediment to screen out. But it won't help much with the light and airy stuff that won't settle to the bottom of a glass fairly quickly. Yes let it make "mud" at whatever flow rate that happens. However, like you mentioned about drilling mud to get out cuttings, you don't have that. It is up to the velocity of the water to make sure the crud comes out of the well. So, you don't want to restrict the flow so much the velocity just lets the heavy stuff settle back down and not come out the top of the well. Just means after it has made mud at low flow for a time, you may need to open it up and get some velocity going to have it come out the top.

    You won't notice the surging with the subdrive because half the time the water is coming from the tank. However, the subdrives with the switch does not ever stay running at a given speed. They basically turn on and off about 45 times a minute, to try and maintain a constant pressure. The little pressure tank supplies water for a few seconds when the pump is off. That means even though the water coming out the tap seems fairly consistent, the pump is surging the well to make that happen. Those subdrive switches are just like a regular 40/60 switch, except that they only have 1 PSI between on and off. So, to maintain a constant 50 PSI, they are continually turning on at 49 and off at 51 over and over 45 times a minute. They would only do this at low flow. When delivering high flow and the pressure stays below 49 the pump will run continuously like a normal pump. I am not saying this is your problem, but with a pump that surges at low flow and only having the problem at low flow it is something to check.
     
  8. VAWellDriller

    VAWellDriller Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2012
    Occupation:
    Mud rotary well driller, pump installer
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    I mentioned gravel pack because as well as a filter material it also protects the screen from other unwanted things settling around screen from the annular.....like all the clays and sands above the screen.....and provides a base for the grout. Though this was air drilled...its not a rock well...no mention of any hard rock at all....I know well construction varies greatly among regions and also among drillers but it sounds like the construction method is to blame for this. I would agree to do whatever it takes pumping wise to get it dirty as often as possible and run it til is clear and repeat.
     
  9. Michael

    Michael New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2019
    Location:
    Eureka MT
    Sounds like I will restrict the flow until the mud comes and flow er 24/7 untill it (hopefully) comes clean. If the mud gets to the point where its viscosity is getting to high I will Increase to full flow till it comes clean then, then reduce the flow back to the "mud" flow rate.

    Is there something I should be doing before letting the well for to protect the motor/ pump for that long? the reason I ask is because I am aware that for larger motors, you need at least 2 minutes between on/ off ?
     
  10. Michael

    Michael New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2019
    Location:
    Eureka MT
    I read alot about gravel packs / learned about them in school, which is why I was so reluctant to agree with everyone on not doing one, its a natural filter.. either way I am going to try what Valveman and yourself are suggesting, flow on the muddy side of things, speed up flow to clear up if high Viscosity, and reduce the flow and continue on..

    Do you guys recommend pulling a piece of drop pipe so the pump is 43 feet off bottom & not 23? I am thinking I am going to flow like previously stated, if that dosent help, pull a drop pipe in 2-3 days (or how long should I flow for ) repeat the flowing process at 43 feet of bottom, if that still dosent work, gravel pack?
     
  11. valveman

    valveman Cary Austin Staff Member

    Joined:
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    Occupation:
    Pump Controls Technician
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    With a static at 135' you should be able to pull it up a joint or two. You always lose some production or storage that way. But I have pulled a joint or two and apparently got above the problem area and the well cleaned up much better. As long as you have enough water in the well you can do that, and it might help.
     
  12. Michael

    Michael New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2019
    Location:
    Eureka MT
    Also how many days do you suggest to flow for? If the water is continually getting better then ill just let it go, but what if it stays the same for days/week, when do you say enough is enough?

    The reason I ask is because the well is at the "lake" which is 4.5 hours away from me, so I am wondering if I should by a timer or something to bring with me.
     
  13. Boycedrilling

    Boycedrilling In the Trades

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2013
    Location:
    Royal City, WA
    Mud rotary drilled domestic wells are not common in the norther tier states. Most wells are drilled with an air rotary drill that has a casing hammer. It works much like a cable tool drill rig but much faster. Typically the drill bit is advanced out the bottom of the casing 1-5 feet, then withdrawn into the casing, the casing hammer is then activated and the casing driven deeper. Repeat, repeat, repeat. Many time 20 ft of 6” casing can be drilled and cased in as little as 15 minutes. Then another 20 ft piece of casing with the drill rod stuffed inside is added. The casing is welded together and the process started again. This would have been how Micheal’s we’ll would have been drilled. If a screen was needed in the water bearing formation, a 6” telescope sized screen would have been placed in the bottom of the cased well. Then the casing would have been pulled back to expose the screen.

    I don’t normally drill domestic wells any more. I drill irrigation wells for farms. The current well I’m drill is being constructed as follows. We are using air rotary. We drilled and drove 20” casing 25 feet thru silt and broken basalt to solid rock. We are drilling 19” open hole with a down hole hammer thru basalt to 660 feet. Then we will place 660 feet of 16” casing in the hole and pressure grout it back to the surface with neat cement grout. Then we will go in with a 15” down hole hammer and drill from 660 to 800 ft. We expect to end up with a well that produces 2,000 gpm.

    The last two wells we drilled were a little different. We mud drilled 23” to 320 feet thru sands and clays, then 20 feet into basalt. We then installed 18” casing and pressure grouted it back to the surface. We then went in in with a 17” hammer bit and drilled open hole to 625 feet for the pump chamber. We then reduced to 9 7/8” and drilled to 995 feet. Producing 1000 gpm with a couple feet of drawdown.

    For large diameter irrigation wells in sands, I have a reverse circulation drill rig. That’s a whole other drilling method.

    Different areas of the country use different drilling methods. I could probably count on one hand the drillers that mud drill domestic wells in Washington, Oregon, or Idaho.
     
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  14. valveman

    valveman Cary Austin Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    Occupation:
    Pump Controls Technician
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    And for those of you who don't understand all that, it is some pretty cool stuff! People who can do that kind of work are in a pretty small class. :)
     
  15. Michael

    Michael New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2019
    Location:
    Eureka MT
    BINGO!!!, that is exactly how the well was drilled, Thank you so much for clarifying and putting a good explanation for all to understand. It was sure interesting watching the well get drilled, I could only imagine seeing one the does 2000 gpm!!!
     
  16. Michael

    Michael New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2019
    Location:
    Eureka MT
    I will try flowing for a day or 2 and while doing so ill keep an eye on the water levels when flowing full & chocked back to find out where and what the water level is exactly at. If I dont see any improvement I will pull a stick or two and go from there..

    I have a game plan for the weekend now and I thank you all for your expertise, I will update (with hopefully good news) when I find out some more information/ results.
     
  17. Boycedrilling

    Boycedrilling In the Trades

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2013
    Location:
    Royal City, WA
    I had to look on the map to see where Eureka is. I’ve never taken the Roosville border crossing. I go up to Alberta 3-4 times a year. Furthest north I’ve been on your highway is Whitefish. My parents grew up south of flathead lake, at Charlo and Ronan.
     
  18. Michael

    Michael New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2019
    Location:
    Eureka MT


    Hi All

    Update for you all and whom ever else has the same problem in the future. Valve man and VaWellDriller where exactly right. Find where it makes the water silty and FLOW!

    Been going for the past couple weeks to the lake and flowing 24/7 while I'm here. Got the neighbor to come during the day and crack it open and flow and various speeds during the week.

    It would come clean and then get a tad dirty periodically for about 5 minutes. I believe it was opening up a new vien every once in awhile. Still does it but I expect it to do that for some time. To confirm this I checked the water depth after flowing 48 hours and we actually gained 8 feet from the "static" water level while flowing. Which the increase of water I believe would be from opening up a new vien..
    I did not end up picking up 20ft or doing a gravel pack. Merely flowed for around 3 weeks..

    My advice for anyone in the future, is listen to these experts on here and FLOW, dont matter how much or how long, just flow, get it where it comes murky and continue flowing..

    thank you everyone for their time and input on this, and I hope that this helps other folks in the future .

    Cant thank everyone enough, and remember, if your reading this and are having the same problem.. FLOW.. before you pick up a stick or gravel pack etc..

    I'll add some final photos when I get back home, files are too large to upload via the cellphone.

    Regards

    Michael T
     
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