What Should You Do if Your Water Well System Floods?

December 11, 2019

If your home is located on a flood plain, you’re familiar with the struggles of the rainy season. Standing water is something you’ll need to combat for several months out of the year, as well as flash flooding and foundation leaks. One other area where you’ll constantly combat Mother Nature is in and around your water well. And unfortunately, a flooded water well in Columbia, TN is going to give you major problems—even more than your leaky basement or standing water outside.

More than a mere nuisance, a water well flooded is a water well that’s unsafe. Contaminants in the well will make the water unsafe for consumption. Well water should have relatively low concentrations of bacteria, nitrates and other pathogens. When groundwater seeps into the aquifer or well due to flash flooding, these concentrations will rise. Until they’re mitigated, you shouldn’t drink from your well. Instead, follow these steps:

  • Stay away from the well: You don’t want to subject your well to any further contamination, so stay away from it! Chances are, the well pump will stop working if the system becomes flooded. Trying to restart it manually means subjecting your well to further contamination.
  • Don’t drink from the well: Even if your pump is still functioning during a flood, avoid drinking from your well. Floodwaters contain bacteria, heavy metals, nitrates and chemicals from the surface soil. Stick to bottled water until the well can be evaluated by a professional.
  • Call a well expert: After the storm has passed, make your first call to a well professional. An expert can clean and restart the pump, and flush and disinfect the well. This will ensure you’re getting clean, safe, reliable potable water again.

Lots of people believe that just because their well works, it’s safe to use. This isn’t the case! Floodwaters are always a reason to be wary of your well. If you notice any discoloration or odors from your tap water during or after a flash flood, stop using it immediately.

Drinking from a flooded well

Sometimes Mother Nature catches us off guard. It storms for three days straight and you don’t have any bottled water in the house. What do you do? If you absolutely have to rely on your potable water, observe boiling best practices.

Before drinking, heat your water to a rolling boil for five minutes, then let it cool before drinking. Boiling your water will kill most harmful bacteria and chemical compounds. Your water might taste a little mineral-laden, but it’ll be relatively safe.

Call a professional ASAP

The number one thing you can do when your water well has flooded in Columbia, TN is call a professional as soon as you can. A professional will be able to deftly repair your pump equipment and perform a water test to make sure your system is in good operating condition and your water is safe. Often, there’s not a lot to do but wait for the weather to pass… but that’s life living on a flood plain!

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