The exact location of our well has been something of a mystery since we bought the house two years ago and we've been so busy fixing everything else that finding the well didn't seem very important. Last week, though, our water pressure went from mediocre to mildly unacceptable. A day or so later, I stood in rapt confusion in the back hallway, listening as an odd chorus of glug-glug-glugging happened in the pipes. On investigation, it turned out that the water seemed to be leaking out of our pipes when the taps were shut off. We'd open a tap and get air spurts before actual water would appear and the amount of actual water ranged from a trickle to randomly spaced drips...in either case, not good! So, a well guy was called. He came over, charged for the visit, and wrote up a heart-attack causing quote for work that entailed finding the well, raising the well (due to new regulations about how far down the top of it can be placed), replacing the pump and changing the pipes to the house to code compliant material (on the assumption that if he would have to raise the well, the pipe material would also need updating). Chris looked worried and I was livid - the work outline seemed reasonable but I thought the guy's estimate was way out of line and made Chris get another estimate. Thankfully, one of our neighbors was able to recommend a well guy who came over on Wednesday and gave the same work outline, plus said we'd have to replace the UV lamp in our filter, and estimated it would cost less than 1/3 what the other guy said. The wash of relief was almost as good as a shower would have been! Still a sizable chunk, but not so daunting as to elicit heart palpatations. They arrived today to do the work. Here's what they found:
1. The well! Happily, someone had already raised the top, which whacked a nice chunk off the price.
2. The pump. Sadly, whomever raised the well did not replace the pump, as the manufacture tag on the pump was dated 1989. Our guess is the same drunk uncle who built the addition on the house may have done the pump work, in which case these findings are par for the course. While the corrosion on the bottom of the pump explains much of it's lackluster performance, the big split in the top casing is responsible for the glug-glug-glugging...that's where the water was actually falling back out of our house, into the well. Our first gravity check of 2006!
3. Finally, the new pump. Currently installed and providing 40 - 60 lbs. of pressure to all taps in our house. I did not get pictures of the new pipe, but did get to drive under it in a semi-fun parody of the limbo on my way over to the arena to shower before heading in to the city for a meeting today. There are cleaner places to shower but the water in the locker room was evident, hot, and not screaming - I was thankful for all three. I will be celebrating in my own shower tomorrow. Chris has, predictably, already tested the bathtub...he says it works very well.