Private Well and Septic

Private water wells and septic systems require homeowners to take more control of their water quality. Well and septic owners have a responsibility to themselves, their families, and their neighbors to protect ground water from contamination and to ensure that water systems provide good quality drinking water.

All well owners should conduct an annual water well "check-up" that includes a wellhead and pressure tank inspection. Conducting an annual well check-up of your water system is an important step to take to ensure proper operation of a well. A check-up can prolong your system’s years of service as you monitor water quality.

Annual check-up checklist:

  • At a minimum, test your water for coliform bacteria and nitrates. You can also test for any additional contaminants that may be specific for your area. You should also have your water tested if there is a: change in taste, odor, or appearance; after the well system is serviced; or after a flooding event.
  • Inspect your well parts to ensure they are in good repair. Look for problems such as cracked, corroded, or damaged well casing or settling and cracking of the ground surface around the well casing. If any of these problems are present, your well can become a conduit for contamination to ground water.
  • Check to make sure your well cap is not broken or missing. If your well does not have a sanitary cap (a two-part cap with a rubber seal), it is recommended that you replace it with a sanitary well cap.
  • Inspect your pressure tank and associated plumbing by looking for things like leaks or corrosion, which could lead to future problems.
  • Survey the area around your well to make sure there are no hazardous materials nearby (paint, motor oil, household chemicals, etc.) which could spill and contaminate your well water.