What is Sediment in Well Water and How to Remove it?

Sediment problem is common to almost all the well owners. Sediment in your well water can come due to many reasons. If you are suffering from this problem and want to get rid of it, this article will help you achieve it.

What is Sediment?

Sediments are suspended particles in your water. They are small particles and travel along the water in pipes and come out of the faucet. When you fill a glass of water and notice small reddish-brown particles circling rapidly in the water, it is the sediment in the water. Sediments are naturally occurring particles that find their way in your water when it moves underground. Sediment consists of sand, rocks, dust, minerals, dirt, and particles of trees. Sediment can be of two types. It can be suspended and dissolved. Dissolved solids enter the water after clear well water is exposed to air.

Sources of Sediment

  • Sediment can enter your water from the drilling process. A newly drilled well will carry sediment for 20-30 days in your water. This duration also depends upon the volume of water drawn from the well.
  • Sediment piles up in older wells, and it is then pumped in your home.
  • Damaged well equipment or casing can give spaces for sediment to move in your plumbing system.
  • Dissolved minerals, sand, rocks, and organic particles enter your well and come out in the shape of sediment.

Effects of Sediments

  • Impacts the quality of water
  • Makes water inconsumable
  • You can’t take a shower with sediment in the water
  • Decreases the flow rate
  • Harms the filters and water softeners
  • Can damage well pump, well casing and other well machinery
  • Damages the plumbing and appliances
  • Sediment is a health risk; microbes can attach themselves to sediment in the water

Testing for Sediment in Water

The first step for removing the sediment in the water is getting your water tested. A water test will help you identify the contents of the water and the contaminants present in it. It will help you look for the right water treatment option. You must not make any guesses while choosing a filter for your water. If your test results come back with bacteria in water, chlorinate your water as soon as possible.

Treatments for Sediment

While you are on the hunt for resolving the sediment issues, you first need to make sure the reason behind sedimentation in your well water. If the sediment amount is too much, it is probably due to some constructional error with your well. For minor sediment in the water, an in-house treatment will be best.

Well Treatment

For sediment issues inside the well, you can do the following

Raise the well pump; it will not pump sediment in the water. Sediment in wells usually settles down at the bottom. If you pull the pump above the sediment layer, the sediment issue will be resolved up to a great extent.

Get the defects repaired; look for any defects in well casing or seals, well pump, well pipes. You can also replace the well screen. These tactics will seal the openings and pathways for the sediment to enter the well.

Cleaning the pump; you can get your well cleaned by a contractor or do it yourself. A DIY well cleaning will take a lot of time, depending upon the amount of sediment in it. Professionals have advanced machinery and will do this task for you in less time and more effectively.

Drill a new well; if nothing above works, you would need to drill a new well.

In-House Treatment

For minor and occasional sedimentation, you can employ any of the following sediment filters.

Well water sediments

Sediment backwash filters; a sediment backwash filter is a maintenance-free filter. You don’t need to replace the filtration media after every 3-6 months. The backwash feature works automatically and cleans the filter. One issue with these filters is that they waste water while backwashing. They have a rating of 5-microns. It means that anything above 5 microns will be removed from your water.

Filtration membranes; filtration membranes such as reverse osmosis and ultrafiltration membranes can remove sediment up to 0.001-micron size. They are the finest in the market and require periodic maintenance. You may need to replace the filtration media every 6-12 months, depending upon the volume of water passing through them. They need high water pressure to operate.

well water sediment removal

Spin-down strainers; are used to remove sand and dirt particles. These filters are used to capture large particles and protect the delicate filters.

Water softeners; a water softener with a sediment filter can also help you remove sediment and make your water soft. If you plan to use your water softener to remove sediment, always look for a softener with a dedicated sediment filter. Do not be tricked by buying a no-sediment filter salt-based water softener.

Reverse osmosis filtration system; a RO system is a complete solution for the majority of well water problems. It will remove the smells, colors, taste issues, contaminants, sediments, and make water safe for drinking. A RO system with UV light purification and re-mineralization stage is ideal for dealing with well water issues.

Final Words

Well owners must not only aim to remove sediment from the water; they must try to deal with all the impurities in it. The best solution for this is to get the water tested and then buy a filter that solves all of your problems.

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