About Me

Planning and Executing Construction and Contracting Projects: Tips for Consumers

Welcome to my blog. My name is Deborah. About 15 years ago, I bought an old home. We worked with several contractors to rehabilitate it, but ultimately, the foundation simply wasn't stable enough, and we had to tear it down. After that, we worked with a construction crew to build a home from the ground up. The experience was exciting and challenging, and I learned a lot through that process. I want to share construction and contracting facts and information with others so I decided to start this blog. I hope that you like the results, and I thank you for reading. Enjoy!

Planning and Executing Construction and Contracting Projects: Tips for Consumers

When Old Isn't Gold: Water Wells

by Samantha Russell

One thing about rural properties is that they often lack mains water supply and as such, many properties have water wells.

It's quite possible that there's an old well which is no longer in use within your new rural getaway. Such a well needs to be decommissioned (taken out of service) before a new well is drilled on the property. This article provides tips on how to locate an old well and an explanation on the need for decommissioning.

Signs Of An Old Well

Water walls will often be drilled a slight distance away from buildings present on rural property. This distance often increases with the increasing size of the property. Signs that may help you identify an abandoned well include, but they're not limited to, the following:

  • Concrete slabs in isolated areas within the property. These might have served as the cover for the abandoned well
  • The presence of an abandoned pump house within the property
  • Depressions on the landscape whose outer edges seem to be clearly defined
  • An old well casing protruding above the ground. Well casings are often made of steel and they come in the form of pipes that have large diameters.

The Need To Decommission An Old Well

Decommissioning might be relatively expensive, but it's probably more expensive not to decommission. For one there's the fact that an abandoned well within your property is a safety hazard. You, your children, or pets could easily fall into the abandoned well and get trapped in there.

In addition to this, the presence of the abandoned well poses a threat to the safety of underground water within the surrounding area. If you proceed to drill a new well without decommissioning the old one, chances that your well water will be contaminated are relatively high. This is because surface drainage to the old well is not likely to have been cut off. Contaminated surface water can drain through the steel casing of the old well and it might reach the aquifer. Because many wells within your area (including the new well that you want to drill) are likely to have the same aquifer as their source of underground water, contamination is a real threat.

Who To Call For Decommissioning 

Fortunately, you might not have to call anyone if you already had a drilling contractor for your new well. The same contractor is likely to be in a position to decommission the old well before he or she begins to work on the new one.