Shallow Well Woes (super shallow)

Users who are viewing this thread

Scolabird

New Member
Messages
9
Reaction score
0
Points
1
Location
Northwest Fl
Have an extremely shallow 4" diameter well casing washed down to only 16feet in NW FL sand . 1hp pump and typical pressure tank maybe 20gallons...The well is 2"PVC with a traditional screen point, a top side 2inch check valve and no drop pipe. We put well down a year ago and run it regularly with no troubles it fills a 5 gallon bucket with clear non smelly water and in about 40 seconds. Now in the last month I have extreme air bubbles and sputtering. The pressure switch is set at 30/50 and it will eventually check and seem fine. Up until this month i could be watering garden and it would maintain 25psi and be able to fill its pressure tank and check itself at 50psi within minutes (while I was using water hose) now well kicks on at 30psi and will fluctuate down to 12psi and hover there for a while then suddenly after say 2 minutes it will surge in pressure and get up to 40 psi then slow back up for maybe 3 minutes to get the additional 10 psi and check at 50psi. There is a massive leak on top of pump at the outlet port. (I used pvc male threaded fitting instead of a section of galvanized like I would normally use, the threads were ate up and allowing water to squirt out a small section at top of pump outlet) Could the big leak at outlet coupling be to blame or has the static water level likely fallen and well point maybe have a section of screen in water and some screen out of water drawing air??? There doesnt appear to be any leaks anywhere on intake side of system? Any other possible culprits to cause these issues? Even when pump runs for 15 minutes it never gets warm to the touch? Any help greatly appreciated Please note I have started washing a different shallow well for a seperate garden within 100 yards of this location and could only wash the shaft hole 8 foot down before all 200 gallons in my washing tank vacated into the ground. That new shaft has been left open over a month and the static water level is a mere 4 foot underground. I understand that underground cavity of water may have a different static level than my 15 foot well but I figure I'd mention it to offer perspective on just how high the water table is all around our home.
 
Last edited:

Scolabird

New Member
Messages
9
Reaction score
0
Points
1
Location
Northwest Fl
Sounds like you have a suction leak or two.
My thoughts also ...
Well I fixed any leaks on outlet side... I tightened all fittings on intake side(suction) same troubles exist. I'm thinking about putting a 1 inch drop pipe inside the 2inch shaft and see if maybe shes drawing a tad bit of air at the top of the wellpoint screen???? Does this sound like a waste of time and $??
 

Reach4

Well-Known Member
Messages
38,982
Reaction score
4,472
Points
113
Location
IL
Well I fixed any leaks on outlet side... I tightened all fittings on intake side(suction) same troubles exist.
Have you tried putting shaving foam on all of the accessible joints while the pump is running? A vacuum leak will suck the foam in, and you can see it. Include the connection at the pump.

I'm thinking about putting a 1 inch drop pipe inside the 2inch shaft and see if maybe shes drawing a tad bit of air at the top of the wellpoint screen????
If you are talking about putting a 1 inch nominal poly pipe down your 2 inch driven well point pipe, it would not be a not a waste of effort. That will prevent air leaks if the well water level does not suck down to the bottom of the poly pipe.

What it won't do is to stop air coming in at the bottom because the water level cannot stay high enough.

Aye could the bladder tank/pressure tank be failing and causing air symptoms?
That would be different symptoms.
 

Scolabird

New Member
Messages
9
Reaction score
0
Points
1
Location
Northwest Fl
Thanks every1 for feedback!
We cut well pipe and ran a snake cam down the 2 inch shallow well casing and found that we had in fact a few inches of screen point drawing air(above the static water) although the bottom was mostly in water thus the air leak aymptoms/bubbles and surging.
We tried the 1 inch pvc "drop" pipe idea with the idea of a <drinking straw drawing water from the bottom of a cup> we ran the 1 inch pipe down deep to keep the suction comming from near bottom of well point screen. It worked for maybe half a day and started having same troubles as before. 1 thing to note is I believe we are only through 1 "hardpan" and less than 15 feet. Now we had an inch or 2 of rain yesterday and another today and despite this, the pump yesterday would at least pump water in spurts or 15 second intervals while water level down the shaft (recovered) , and this evening it wont put out any water at all???

So with that information, could I be correct that the sandy/silty soil around the pvc screen point could be clogged up? We weren't getting the most desirable (water bearing sand in our final cuttings when washing the well down... Maybe it was fine at first but slowly the slits filled with mucky debris? Upon inspection with a snake camera inside the screen point(3 days ago before any rain) I could see my drop pipe act as a straw and suck all the water out in about 15 seconds then I could watch water rise back up/recover in the 2 inch pipe at a rate of roughly a quarter inch per second until it'd reach drop pipe again and all get sucked out in a cyclic/ rhythmic fashion. When we first washed down this well, I let it run on a garden hose for almost a full day at better than 5 gallons a minute and now within a matter of days its dry?

On another note, any professional or experienced opinions on putting gravel down and around a shallow well point?
Any feedback/help is appreciated, I know well could simply be dry, but I'm hoping for any other tips/tricks or insights/ideas
Thanks
Dry guy in FL
 

Valveman

Cary Austin
Staff member
Messages
14,685
Reaction score
1,322
Points
113
Location
Lubbock, Texas
Website
cyclestopvalves.com
You are correct that the pump will draw air and lose prime if the water level drops and exposes the tops slots the air. Driving the point deeper is probably the only option. There really is no way to put gravel around a point well. The screen in the point is supposed to be small enough to restrict the sand but not the water. Since you can see the water being drawn down, the screen is either clogged or not in a good water bearing formation. I would probably pull the casing, clean the slots, and drive deeper in a different location.
 

FlaJunkie

New Member
Messages
1
Reaction score
0
Points
1
Location
Rockledge, FL
I found your thread looking for shallow well hints. I have put a shallow well in for irrigation before. But I did it differently than you did. ( I think)

I used a plastic well point with about 20 feet of pvc. A city pressurized house water line was attached at the top. Two of us just kept moving the pipe up and down until we got it where we wanted it. Or where it stopped in this case, about 18 feet down.

The home is at six feet above sea level on the east coast of Florida.

I am getting ready to do it again at our new home location, also on the east coast of Florida, also about six feet ASL.

Found this video. With some adjustments, this would work better than what we did before.
Shallow well
 
Last edited:
Top
Hey, wait a minute.

This is awkward, but...

It looks like you're using an ad blocker. We get it, but (1) terrylove.com can't live without ads, and (2) ad blockers can cause issues with videos and comments. If you'd like to support the site, please allow ads.

If any particular ad is your REASON for blocking ads, please let us know. We might be able to do something about it. Thanks.
I've Disabled AdBlock    No Thanks