How Does Flooding Affect My Well Water?

With much of the East Coast under water due to super storm Sandy some people with private wells will have contaminated well water. If your well casing is covered by flood water then your well may be flooded … and contaminated. The surface water may have entered your well from the casing.

I would encourage you to stop using your water for drinking purposes and to buy a well water test as soon as possible.

Traditional well drillers will encourage you to disinfect the well using chlorine bleach. The purpose of that is to kill any bacteria that may have entered. The problem with this traditional approach is that the bleach will interact with organic debris in your well water creating cancer causing byproducts which will persist in your well for months. I suggest you use a 35% solution of hydrogen peroxide for disinfection instead.

If you call me and order a water test we can determine if the well water is safe to drink and what sort of well water filter or well water treatment system you may need.

While some companies recommend testing your well annually I suggest that testing during different seasons will give you a sense of the range of variability in your well water. Well water can change due to drought, becoming harder, or excess rain which refreshes the water. So a test during spring rains or late summer can show you the differences in your well water. This, in turn, can lead us to determine which type of treatment will provide you with the best water filter or best well water treatment system.

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About James McMahon

Studied ecology at the University of Illinois, mountain survival at Eastern Washing University, Deep Ecology at Naropa, River Ecology with The Nature Conservancy and Luna Leopold

This entry was posted in Best Water Filter, Water Purification, Well Water Purification. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to How Does Flooding Affect My Well Water?

  1. Anna says:

    Yeah! I strongly agree on you, rain water may contain chemicals. Thanks for sharing this great informative post to us! Keep posting!

    • Anna – Indeed rain may contain chemicals like mercury, pesticides, and nitrates but in the case of flooding rainwater will move large amounts of organic debris. These may contain anything that is lying on the surface of the land including dirt, feces, and bacteria. Therefore a well can become contaminated in potentially harmful ways. After a flood a well water test can be used to determine if the well is safe to drink or if it requires some type of well water purification system.

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