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Tips for Dealing with Sediment in Your Well Water

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If your home's well water is starting to show sediment or sand content, you need to consider investing in a sediment filter for the pump system. Before you invest in a filter or pump for your home's water system, you need to make sure you're making the right choice for the problem at hand. Here's a look at some of the things you need to think about.

Recognizing the Source of the Sediment

The first step for dealing with sediment in your well water is to determine where that sediment is actually coming from. There are many sources of sediment in well water, including things like decaying fixtures. Corrosion of galvanized iron pipes may be the cause because that corrosion can cause the coating on the pipe to deteriorate, creating sediment in the water. In addition, you may have a similar problem inside your water-heater tank. This is especially a common problem if you have a tank with a metal lining.

In addition, the anode rod in the tank may corrode, causing similar particles. Run cold water through a faucet into a clear glass, then check for sediment. If there's no sediment in the cold water, but there is visible sediment in the hot water, the hot-water tank is the likely source of your problem. However, if there's sediment in both, you'll want to have the pipes tested for corrosion before determining whether the sediment is coming from the pipes or the well.

Testing the Water

Once you've ruled out the hot-water tank as the source of the problem, you need to identify the actual type of sediment to locate the origin. The testing will tell you if the particles are the result of deterioration of the pipe coating, sand in the well, or other contamination. If the issue is other contamination, you may need to have more intervention than just a sediment filter. For example, you may need a filtration system that eliminates mineral and metal content. This will work in conjunction with your sediment filter to purify the water.

Selecting Your Sediment Filter

There are three key types of sediment filters to choose from depending on exactly what you need.

  1. A centrifugal sand separator removes particles using centrifugal force. Since the separator is not mechanical, there are no components that can wear out. In addition, you won't have any screens or filters to clean. The only thing you'll have to do for maintenance is to purge the separator periodically to flush out the sand accumulation.  

  2. Spin filters rely on a screen system to filter sediment. The flush valve will need to be opened to clear out sediment periodically, and you'll need to flush the filter cartridge on a regular basis. Just make sure that you choose a screen that's coarse enough to trap the particles you're dealing with.

  3. Household micron filters are another great option for your particle filters. These filter systems are designed to remove even the smallest particles from your water. You'll want to work with a well-pump specialist to choose the right filter size for your needs based on the types of sediment found in your water.

When you're dealing with your home's well-water supply, you need to be attentive to every potential risk factor, including the sediment that can accumulate both in the well and in the pipes. With the right testing and filtration investment, you can keep your water clean and safe with minimal intervention on a regular basis. Don't put your family at risk of contamination from unrecognized sediment or other materials when you can follow the tips here and work with a well-water specialist to identify and address the problem right away.