Basic Steps to Protect Private Drinking Water

Typical Wellhead

Typical Wellhead

Properly maintaining wells that tap into groundwater is critical for protecting personal health and the resource, say state health officials. National Groundwater Awareness Week was established more than two decades ago to bring attention to the important role that groundwater plays in the health and well-being of people. The Minnesota Department of Health recommends all well owners take some basic steps to maintain their well and protect their drinking water.

Basic Wellhead Inspection: Keep insects, rodents, snakes and other undesirable critters out of your well. Keep lawn mowers, snowplows and other equipment away from wells. Follow the Three Cs of well maintenance:

  • Cap – ensure the well cap is securely attached and not broken or missing, and the connections through the cap are watertight.
  • Casing – observe the well pipe or casing for cracks or corrosion. Call a licensed well contractor for repairs.
  • Conduit – confirm that the conduit for the electric service wire to the well is securely connected to the well cap.

Well Water Testing: Complete basic water testing to ensure safe drinking water. Your local county health department may provide or arrange for testing, or you can find certified testing laboratories at the website below.

The following are what you typically will want to test your water for. Other testing may be needed depending on where you live and the surrounding land use.

  • Bacteria – complete a total coliform bacteria test annually or any time your water system is serviced, or you notice a change in taste, color, or odor.
  • Nitrate – complete a nitrate test every two years, or annually if nitrate is detected in your well, and always before giving the water to an infant.
  • Arsenic – complete an arsenic test once.
  • Lead – complete a lead test once, or always flush faucets for at least one to two minutes before using water from them for drinking or cooking when the water has not been used for six hours or longer and never drink from your hot water taps.

You can read the complete posting here:  Basic steps to protect private drinking water

To learn more about well water maintenance and well water testing, go to: Well Water Testing & Maintenace

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