Get our new water well inspection checklist
New Hampshire does not require residents on well water to test for potential contaminants and chemicals in their well. That’s why we assembled a free water well inspection checklist for you to download, print and hang on the refrigerator.
Just because the water from your taps looks clean, has no smell and tastes normal, there may be contaminants not safe for consumption or bathing. For example, if there’s construction in your neighborhood including drilling new wells, that could change the water table and leave your well open to impurities.
What could be in your well water?
Twenty percent of private wells in NH have unsafe levels of arsenic in the water, yet many people with arsenic in their water don’t know it because of the lack of state testing requirements. Arsenic is one of the most common elements of the earth’s crust. Tiny amounts of arsenic dissolve into water through the bedrock, ending up in well water.
More than 75% of the wells in New Hampshire are bedrock wells, and 20-30% of all private bedrock wells are above the Environmental Protection Agency’s arsenic limit. Arsenic has no taste, odor or color, and health issues result from long-term exposure to it via your home’s water. Long term exposure to arsenic from water can result in:
- Circulatory system problems
- Neurological issues
- Skin damage
- Increased risk of cancer
Our certified water experts have been testing for arsenic in well water for decades, and can help you with treatment and removal. Testing should be part of your water well maintenance checklist.
Heavy rain and melting snow dissolves iron particles that enter into well water, meaning iron in well water is unavoidable. Iron in water may cause staining, a metallic taste and fouling of your pipes and plumbing.
If beverages made with water from your well start to taste weird, or if you notice a drop in water pressure or appliances that use water start to discolor, you may have iron in your well water. Also, if you notice a yellow/brown staining or discoloration in your water that affects laundry, toilets, tubs, appliances, fixtures or any other water-using system, you likely have iron in your water.
Treatment for iron in well water is a common occurrence if you live in the northeastern states where iron is liberally deposited in the granite strata. Fortunately, there are many effective water treatment systems for the removal of iron, but first we need to determine which type of iron you have to devise the best treatment option.
Radon gas may release as a product of the decay of uranium in the ground, making its way up through soil and accumulating in enclosed spaces such as homes.
This accumulation allows radon to attain concentrations that are hazardous to humans and to pets. Radon gas is also dissolved in well water and enters the house through the water system.
Radon has no odor or other indicator to announce its presence, but the potential threat to your family is real. Radon gives off harmful radiation, which is attributed to an increased risk of certain cancers. Testing is the only way to detect radon in your drinking and bathing water.
There are a few methods for radon reduction in water depending on the level. For simple removal of low levels, a filter tank filled with granular activated carbon media will collect radon, reducing the amount in water. The problem with this method is that its passive design makes it impossible to maintain any kind of consistent removal level, and when it becomes saturated it presents a radiation hazard for homeowners and water technicians alike.
This method also requires frequent testing to monitor the media life.
A highly-efficient method for removing any level of radon up to and beyond 100,000 picocuries is an air stripper. This device uses aggressive agitation and aeration of the well water to strip out the radon gas and power vent it safely outside the home. The system then re-pressurizes the water for household use. We guarantee using an air stripper reduces radon by more than 98%.
Uranium is a naturally occurring metal found mainly in New Hampshire granite – which means, here in the “Granite state,” there’s potentially a lot of uranium out there. Uranium is naturally occurring in other bedrock, too. Wells drilled into bedrock aquifers may produce water containing uranium. Aside from testing the well water, there’s no way to confirm the presence or absence of uranium.
We used to find uranium only in a specific part of New Hampshire, off of Interstate 89. In recent years, our team has found it in many other areas of the state and even on the border of Maine.
The main concern of uranium in water is consuming it. That’s how uranium ends up in your bloodstream and accumulates over time. Consumed uranium travels through our cells and destabilizes nearby atoms and damages chromosomes. This exposure can lead to cancer.
Both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the EPA say that there are potential health risks when a concentration of uranium in groundwater used for drinking is higher than established human-health standards.
Testing your well water helps keep your family safe. It’s a relatively quick process, and our team has a variety of solutions if your well water has one or several of these elements present. Download our water well inspection checklist today.