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Shallow 50 foot well.

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    #16
    Originally posted by Patriot1965 View Post
    what are you looking for from this well water source? potable water or water for watering the grass and stuff...?
    I water my lawn with my shallow well. I would not be comfortable using it for drinking purposes without either distillation or RO filtration first, because water from this near the surface is always badly contaminated with stuff that will not be removed by simply boiling or chlorinating it. My problem is that neither RO nor distillation are simple to perform at scale without electricity. That's still manageable if you've got a way to keep a generator running, but at that point, focusing on hand pumping as your water supply just doesn't make sense.

    That's why I'd suggest for true long-term SHTF preparation, you're far better off with rainwater collection. Rainwater is essentially chemically distilled (even the nitrate and sulfate contamination from acid rain are nothing in comparison to what's found in surface runoff due to fertilizers and pesticides), with the main contamination being bacterial (think bird poop). And that's pretty easy to deal with. Use a flocculant to clarify the big stuff out, filter out the medium sized stuff, and boil/chlorinate to kill the smallest stuff that remains (better yet, use UV sterilization if you've got an electricity source). Chlorine is cheap and stores well, and boiling can be performed over a wood fire.

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    • bigbore44
      bigbore44 commented
      Editing a comment
      I plan on using cisterns for my upstate cabin until I locate one of the natural springs that flow all year round. IBC caged totes for the storage. For cleaning and showering, it is fine. I always use bottled water for consumption / cooking etc.

    • Patriot1965
      Patriot1965 commented
      Editing a comment
      agreed, I wouldnt use a shallow well for drinking water or even bathing, as contaminants can pass through the skin, also your eyes, mouth , etc...I have deep wells upstate and the casings are sealed into the bedrock so surface contaminants are separated by the bedrock... there are plenty of active springs around me for an added water source along with my ponds on the property....I have plenty of steel roofing on all the buildings for a rain water catch if needed..
      if you have the money for drilling a deep well, you can still use a hand or solar pump to get the water out if you dont have electric..

    #17
    Not sure how to quote a comment, but I think this needs attention:
    "I have deep wells upstate and the casings are sealed into the bedrock so surface contaminants are separated by the bedrock"

    One concern with a shallow well is how well the casing is sealed. Contaminants like to flow down through the easiest path, and will channel through the excavated/disturbed earth around your casing whenever possible. I have concern about how you'd seal the casing when it is driven loosely in all of the wet processes out there. In my case, I dug down 4' with a post hole digger first, and filled in that gap with concrete at the end after hammering the pipe down. I guess that may still work when you use a power jet or simply a running hose, but the casing isn't all that tightly sealed to the earth around it further down, which I'd think risks contamination.

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    • Patriot1965
      Patriot1965 commented
      Editing a comment
      there is no sealing a shallow well casing, theres nothing to seal it against, its just drilled or pounded into the dirt/sand....it doesnt go down to bedrock that seals out the surface contaminants...I had a new deep well drilled about 10 years ago on a rental upstate and watched the whole process...they drill 6 inch steel casing down to bedrock and then pound it into the rock to seal...I dropped down the pump and did all the connections and wiring...
      Last edited by Patriot1965; 04-22-2022, 03:28 PM.

    • rlitman
      rlitman commented
      Editing a comment
      Oh, no, it certainly is sealed. As I said, the disturbed earth around the pipe is a conduit for bacteria to make a beeline for your shallow well screen. While the undisturbed earth does filter the water percolating through it (at least a little), a poorly sealed casing will make your bacterial counts skyrocket.
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