When your home's water comes from a well located on the property instead of from a city source, you need to protect your family's health from pesticides, chemicals, and heavy metals. You are able to do this by testing your well water for substances that shouldn't be there. If you are new to well water, there are several ways to protect it.
Reasons to Test
There are several reasons to test your well water and they don't just include existing health problems you might experience. It is possible that you might not be experiencing any problems yet, but when certain substances are in the water you are drinking, you might get ill at a later date. Some of the reasons to test your water include:
Any gastrointestinal issues you are experiencing
If your household plumbing contains lead
If your region is radon rich
The area has a lot of agriculture
Gas drilling operations are nearby
A dump, junkyard, landfill, dry cleaning facility, factory or gas station are in the area
The water is cloudy, frothy or colored or has a salty taste
These are only some reasons but it is a good idea to test your water annually to protect yourself and your family.
You need to protect your family from illness due to any flooding that is occurring in your area. While you can't prevent a flood, you can make sure you aren't drinking any contaminated water. After a flood, stay away from the well pump while it's still underwater to prevent electric shock. If you are unsure how to ensure that it is safe and operating normally, you can get a repairman to come and take a look at it. Don't drink the water from well at this point or wash in it to avoid becoming sick.
The pump should be cleaned and disinfected before it is turned back on and a contractor can help with this. Once the pump is turned back on, pump the water until it turns clear to rid the well of the flood water. If the water does not turn clear again, ask your county or state health department for help in cleaning or if a new well needs to be dug.
You can protect your water supply by keeping contaminates away from the well and sinkholes. You should keep any hazardous materials away from any water source and keep chemicals out of the septic system. Check your well for any cracks, corrosion or cracked seals and replace any missing well caps. It is a good idea to treat your well at least once a year for coliform bacteria, nitrates, and other contaminants.