Many people want to own homes next to lakes and rivers. You can enjoy several perks living next to a large water body, one of which is watching a breathtaking sunset or sunrise on the patio of your house. If you have a boat or kayak, you can launch it right from your property. However, living next to a large water body has one main disadvantage: if you live next to a flood zone. This means that you will have to deal with seasonal flooding, which can devastate your property and damage your infrastructure. More importantly, flooding can affect the quality of your well and household water. The question you have to ask yourself after a flood is my well contaminated with floodwater?
Flooding is not only limited to areas next to large water bodies; sometimes, it can occur in usually dry places, often caused by hurricanes. Floods will affect houses, farmland, businesses, and infrastructure. They become especially dangerous when the water comes into contact with bacteria, fuel, chemicals, and other potential pollutants that are enemies to human health. The contaminants will flow along with the floodwater, sometimes in very high volume, and accumulate over the landscape.
As a result, anyone who comes into contact with flood water may be at serious risk. The risk increases when the floodwater mixes with community water systems and private wells. Floodwaters are capable of inundating water wells for days or even weeks. Sometimes, the water flows with a lot of force which damages or disrupts the structure of the well or the infrastructure of the water supply and directly introduces pollutants into the water intended for consumption.
You need to consider that your well or any water treatment system you have installed may be prone to contamination and damage. Suppose these issues are not addressed as soon as possible. In that case, flood water will affect the quality of your water as well as the operation of your well. You will have to pay a significant amount to fix this massive problem.
Contamination and damage of a private well
The words ‘biological contaminants‘ are not really something you want to hear when it comes to the water that flows in your home. The high and rapid increase of water levels may cause refuge such as animal waste and sewage to enter your home water supply. Floodwaters alter the microbiology and chemistry of the water flowing into your home. This increasing of acquiring harmful microorganisms such as coliform bacteria which cause gastrointestinal problems and other infectious diseases.
If your well has been affected by a flood. First, you must take caution and stay away from it as long as the floodwaters are present. Don’t try to fix it then, or you might get an electric shock from the pump. Do not consume the well water or use it to wash dishes, clothes and surfaces. You may get sick or have a topical reaction.
When it floods, the floodwater will carry the shifted earth and debris, which damages the structural integrity of the seal, cap, and casing of your well. These damages will create channels that the floodwater will use to enter your water supply. Microscopic bacteria can move through even the smallest channels. Therefore, it will not be difficult for your well to get contaminated. You need to regularly look out for damages on exposed components of your well.
The structure of your well may be solid, but this will not prevent cavities from forming around the casing, which will allow dirty water from the surface to move down into the aquifer.
An aquifer is the water-bearing rock area that holds the groundwater that flows to your well. These earth layers may be contaminated by either man-made or natural events occurring near the surface. Flood water can disturb the nature of your aquifer, increasing the amount of sediment that enters your well. This will wear out your pump, decreasing the lifespan of your water system.
If you own a house in a highly flooded area, you should not risk your health and safety. You should conduct a simple bacteria test to determine the presence of coliform. E. coli is a great indicator that your well is contaminated with other bacteria. If the test is positive, you can sanitize your water system through shock chlorination. This process involves using a disinfection solution that contains chlorine. The solution is mixed with water disinfecting the water in the entire distribution system, even the pipelines and the distribution pump.
Before you consume the water, you will need to flush and re-sample the well to make sure that the process is successful. We recommend that you get an expert to inspect your well to prevent any avenues through which bacteria can pass through.
Water treatment system during flooding
Once you have gone through the above procedures and your water supply is deemed safe, remember to sterilize any water treatment equipment before reinstalling it. Suppose any part of the water equipment has come into contact with floodwater. If this includes the top of the media tank, then there is a high chance that bacteria will grow inside the unit.
You can easily clean a system with a disinfectant before returning it to regular service. Some media or filtration cartridges will need replacement before the equipment can once again function safely. Remember to consult an expert to find the best solution for your equipment maintenance after a flood.
You will need to replace your entire system if your water treatment equipment has been underwater levels above the controller’s height. The water will affect the electronics inside the controller.
What options do you have?
If you need to replace existing water treatment equipment or implement a new system altogether to get clean water in your household, you have a wide variety of options to consider.
A water softener will help remove excess calcium, magnesium, and iron minerals that affect your skin, hair, nails, appliances, and cleaning efforts. You can get a filtration system that will get rid of the minerals that cause hard water and remove any unwanted tastes and odors. If you want to reduce harmful organic contaminants as well as minerals, you can use a reverse osmosis system or a ONE filtration system.
For a free estimate call Affordable Water at 204 333-9250