Shocking a residential well?

7 Replies

Hey there! We are planning to rent my late parents house that has a well. We had the water tested and it is positive for chloroform but negative for ecoli (thank goodness). Anyway, is it hard to shock it with bleach or should I call out the well people again (haven't got quote yet) Just the testing cost us 195. Any advice is helpful!

Very simple .   DONT USE SCENTED BLEACH  . Basically you remove the cap off the well head , Pour down a gallon of bleach and let it sit for 10 minutes . Then you run every faucet  in the house  until you smell chlorine . Dump another 1/2 gallon down the well .  Run the hot water longer to get in the tank .  Then you take a garden hose from the house and stick it in the well head and let it run for about a hour.  Let it sit about 3 hours , then let the water run a couple hours , ( not into a septic tank too much )  until there is no more chlorine smell .   Either thru the house plumbing , or thru the garden hose . 

It's "coliform". I've never heard of shocking drinking water once (pools yes) and that being it. You need to find out what is required to ensure the drinking water is safe on an ongoing basis.

I've never had an issue like this but it sounds dangerous. This sounds like something best left to the pros. When someone could possibly get sick or die I pass the job to the pros. I don't want that kind of liability to save some money.

Thanks for the advice everyone!

I am not an expert water guy, but have a little bit of a background to work with.  You mentioned "late parents" (sorry for your loss).  I am going to assume that means that the house has been vacant for a while.  Some pollutants in water are the result of a combination of stagnant water as well as runoff from the surrounding area.  Runoff issues can be seasonal, with spikes of certain pollutants after heavy snow melt or rain events.  If you are in an agricultural area, they can be associated with increase in farming activity as well.

As far as shocking the well goes, it is not all that uncommon.  I am not trying to step on @Matthew Paul  's toes here, he may have a lot more experience in doing this than I do.  The quantity suggested seems fairly high.  I have done similar treatments with far less bleach and it still seems like it takes FOREVER to get the chlorine flushed out of it.  Another risk is actually running the well dry trying to flush it out.  Matthew may be able to elaborate more or maybe there is another source (try asking the water testing place, maybe they will give you "free" advice since you already gave them some of your money).  It is important not to leave elevated chlorine levels in the water as well as to not drink or cook with the "shocked" water as that can have health hazards as well.

Best of luck!

The interesting thing about chlorine is that its a gas , not a liquid , it is introduced into the liquid by electrolosis , after that it is always trying to turn into a gas and evaporate .If left alone in the well pipe the chlorine will disappear on its own. Sodium hypochlorite  is salt - water- chlorine , once the chlorine has evaporated all thats left is salt water . 

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