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If you live in the country or on the edge of a city where there is no water service, and instead get your water from your own well, it's important to regularly maintain it to keep high water quality, and to prevent expensive repair bills.

You may start to notice an issue with water quality simply by a change of taste when drinking tap water, however, annual bacterial checks should be done as well. These can be easily done after purchasing a water test kit from a local hardware store.

At least once per year, the well cover should be checked to ensure it fits properly and that nothing can leak in from the surface. If a vented well cap is present, it should be free of debris, and in-tact in order to keep bugs and animals out. If the well is around new trees or shrubs, their roots should not have grown to within ten feet of the well. Finally, the well's casing should be at least one foot above the ground.

While components of your well and water system can break down over time, common sense should also prevail, such as keeping hazardous chemicals, such as oil, lawn fertilizer, and paint away from your well. Do not insert hoses or pumps into the well to retrieve water; use your home's water taps and faucets instead. Be careful when mowing the grass around the well as to not damage it. Finally, when doing any kind of landscaping or moving earth around the well, ensure that the ground slopes away from the well to prevent surface runoff, as should have been the case when the well was installed.

Keeping these tips front of mind when performing these activities can ensure accidental contamination of your water supply does not happen. With proper care, you can maintain your home's well to live its full and expected lifetime.

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Keith Langlois

RHI 

Registered Home Inspector
Licensed Electrician