23184 Fraser Highway, Langley  BC V2Z 2V1
604-534-1115   www.edspumps.com

September 2012 

In This Issue



Why do wells go dry?


Groundwater, which is found in aquifers below the surface of the Earth, is one of Canada's most important natural resources.


The water level in the aquifer that supplies a well does not always stay the same. Droughts, seasonal variations in rainfall, and pumping affect the height of the underground water levels. If a well is pumped at a faster rate than the aquifer around it is recharged by precipitation or other underground flow, then water levels in the well can be lowered. This can happen during drought, due to the extreme deficit of rain. The water level in a well can also be lowered if other wells near it are withdrawing too much water.


What determines if a well will go dry?      

A well is said to have gone dry when water levels drop below a pump intake. This does not mean that a dry well will never have water in it again, as the water level may come back through time as recharge increases. The water level in a well depends on a number of things, such as the depth of the well, the type (confined or unconfined) of aquifer the well taps, the amount of pumping that occurs in this aquifer, and the amount of recharge occurring. Wells screened in unconfined water table aquifers are more directly influenced by the lack of rain than those screened in deeper confined aquifers. A deep well in a confined aquifer in an area with minimal pumping is less likely to go dry than a shallow, water-table well.


There are ways to diagnose loss of water wells productivity and addressing this problem.   


Read more  




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Dave Mellis
President, CWS-V

How often should I test my well water.

The National Groundwater Association recommends well owners test the water:

    • Annually for bacteria, nitrates/nitrites, and any contaminants of local concern
    • More frequently than once a year if there is a change in the taste, odor, or appearance of the well water, or if a problem occurs such as a broken well cap or a new contamination source
    • If family members or house guests have recurrent incidents of gastrointestinal illness
    • If an infant is living in the home
    • To monitor the efficiency and performance of home water treatment equipment.

You should also check with your local health or environmental health department for recommendations regarding the type and frequency of testing specific to your location.

The presence of coliform bacteria is a possible indicator of a well's susceptibility to contamination from animal wastes. E. coli is bacteria that originates from wastes such as those found in sewage, and it can result in severe illness. Its presence suggests a contamination source such as a poor performing home septic system in the vicinity of the well that should be repaired or removed by a qualified septic system contractor.

In the vast majority of cases, nitrates come from farm or industrial contamination, or septic systems, and they can be dangerous to your health. Nitrates from fertilizers and septic wastes could be an indication of a local source of contamination or regionally contaminated ground water.

Arsenic is an example of water quality concerns that can be present on either a local or regional basis. It can can be naturally occurring in an aquifer. Arsenic is a semi metallic element that occurs in rocks and soils-and water that comes into contact with these rocks and soils.


Dave would be pleased to answer any questions you may have on pumps and water treatment. He can be reached at 604-534-1115 or 1-800-900-2220 or by  

email:  dave.mellis@edspumps.com 


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