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Water well casing leak diagnosis & repair questions & answers.

Frequently asked questions & answers about how to fix a leaky or damaged water well casing; sources of casing repair tools, kits, methods, and experts.

This article series describes the diagnosis and repair of leaky water well casings. Leaks into a well casing risk contaminating the well water with unsanitary ground water, surface runoff, and salts, fertilizer, bacteria, or any other contaminant likely to be flowing on the ground surface.



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Well Casing Leaks: diagnosis & repair of leaks in residential water well casings

Submersible pump and well casing (C) D Friedman

Questions & answers on how to repair a leaky or damaged well casing, posted originally at this article

Question: how do I re-line or repair a leaky, damaged well casing: my well is a 2-inch diameter bore

2017/05/31 Darrell said:

I have a satrite msn 6 2 stage one line 1 hp jet 326 feet deep 2" out side case that was put in between the late 40s early 50s that I believe has a hole in the casein can I reline it?
This question and reply were posted originally at WATER PUMP, ONE LINE JET

Reply:

Darrell,

Certainly there are well casing repair kits, basically a sleeve that is inserted into the well bore. You wouldn't re-line an entire well bore in most circumstances.

But a 2-inch O.D. well bore is so small I'm doubtful that you can re-line it. Are you sure we've got this dimension right?

We discuss repairs to well casing leaks at inspectapedia.com/water/Well_Casing_Leaks.php WELL CASING LEAK REPAIRS

Please take a look at that article.

If you can get a well camera down the well bore, that's where to start. You want to know the location (depth from ground surface) and nature of the damage.

The repair sequence is to use a swage to push a deformed casing back into proper round cylindrical shape, then a well casing repair sleeve - a metal (or other) liner is pushed into the well to the proper depth.

I looked for sources of small-diameter well casing repair sleeves and report on:

T.D. Williamson sells steel repair sleeves for damaged well casings in sizes 2" to 48" in diameter. I'd contact the company about the ability to fit one of their sleeves into your well casing once we have accurate measurements of the inside diameter of the casing.
As we have readers world-wide and you didn't mention your location I'll include several contact numbers for the company, as they have locations world-wide.

T.D. Williamson, Inc., Website: http://www.tdwilliamson.com/
North & South America: +1 918 447 5000
Europe/Africa/Middle East: +32 67 28 3611
Asia Pacific: +65 6364 8520
Offshore Services: +47 5144 3240

Well packers and even pumping sealants down to a leak location are other well casing leak repairs but those are more-likely not going to be suitable for a 2 inch residential water well casing damage repair job.

An example of these more-sophisticated well casing patch systems is the XPatch Expandable Casing Patch - described in two PDFs I will include below.

Keep me posted on how you progress as what you find will doubtless help other readers as well.

Well Casing Repair Kits

Question: indications of a well casing leak

(Feb 22, 2014) Joe Mattioni said:
I have a problem with our well water getting a brownish tint to it a day or two after a heavy rain. I have done a cursory inspection of the casing down to about 30 feet with a camera. The well is 450 feet deep with (I am told) about 40 feet of casing.

I am NOT seeing water enter the casing, but noticed that the interior is very corroded with sheets of rust peeling from the inside of the casing in a few places. The pitless adapter has peeling sheets of rust all the way around it.

Can you tell me if this is a sign of a casing leak?

Reply:

Joe I'm not sure but the thick flaking (exfoliating) rust is more than just surface rusting and could be hiding well casing leaks that show up as rusty water when there's a lot of rain; the casing's job is to keep surface water out of the well.

You might get more insight by having the water tested to identify the type of sediment and coloration in the water; from there you probably need a well repair company to take a look at the casing. If the casing is actually perforated or cracked then repairs are needed.

Depending on the extent of damage, if the casing is found to be shot and leaking there are repair methods that can often salvage the well.

Question: leaks at an artesian borehole well

(Apr 5, 2014) Anonymous said:
how to fix leakage around the base of a free flowing artesian borehole of 180 meters

Reply:

Your well service company may need to replace a seal inside the well casing. The seal prevents the water from reaching higher in the borehole than designed.

Question: sudden appearance of sand in well water

(May 7, 2014) Brett Wells said:
my well sudenly pumped alot of sand up into my system. It then stopped working. originaly it was 100' deep i figured this out when I dropped the 60' of pipe in and had to fish it out. I since replaced with pvc. pulled the pipe out and found the coupling had come apart fixe that lowered back in but it stopped.

I pulled it out found the valve at the bottom full of sand and dirt at least 1' into pipe. I checked the water level with a string and weight it was about 25'but the hole was now only 52' deep I lowered 40' of pipe back in primed the system it seemed to work but suddenly stopped so I pulled the pipes up enough to lower a string back in and the water level was at 40' does this mean my well has collapsed and I need to drill a new one ?

Reply:

Hi Brett. Indeed it sounds as if the well casing has been damaged, perhaps by rust perforation, if not collapsing then allowing sand to enter the well. A second concern is that if the casing side has failed in one or more places the well would no longer be assured of remaining sanitary. Surface or high level groundwater leaking into the well casing contaminates such a well.

Sometimes the well casing rusts and perforates at a single site (near the top of the static water head). In such cases it's sometimes possible to repair the casing by inserting a sleeve sealed to the well sides.

In that case a well restoration company may be able to repair the well and pump out sand and soil from the well bottom, restoring the present well. If that cost is significantly less than drilling a new well I'd give it a try.

Call well drillers in your area asking who has the necessary expertise to diagnose the problem and propose a repair.

Keep us posted. What you learn will assist others.

Question: North Georgia deep well problems: Georgia clay vs rust

(June 14, 2014) Robert Micheals said:

My wife and I bought some property in the north Georgia Mountains. The property used to have a small cabins that we believe was built in the 1970's. The small cabin has been demolished but the drilled well is still there. I hire a well company to test the pump We showed the motor was pulling around 7 amps. But we could not get any water up. We decided to pull the pump up and inspect it ourselves. The well pump was about 200 feet deep.

The inlets of the pump are covered in what looks like Georgia Clay (maybe its rust?) The well casing does appear to have a good amount of rust on it and the pump and well have not been used for the past 20 years. We don't have a lot of money to dropped into the well Do you think this sediment around the inlets could be caused by the well being static for so many years? Or could this be a sign of a casing problem?

Reply:

Yes, a cracked casing can send additional mud into the well as can leaks around the pitless adapter, or if the casing top is buried, leaks there. Any of these are important to repair not just for the mud but because the well sanitation is no longer reliable - the water may be unsafe to drink if surface runoff is leaking into the well.

Question: well sleeves

(Sept 25, 2014) Lorrisa Singh said:
Was wondering what mechanisms you use to sleeve the wells..
How do u install the well sleeve?

Reply:

The sleeve is selected to match the internal diameter of the well and must also be able to pass the submersible pump (if used) and foot valve and piping. It is inserted into the well at proper depth and mechanically expanded against the casing sides. The procedure is described in the article above.

Question: slow leak at or in well

(May 10, 2015) Jan McWhort said:
We have a water well that has developed a slow leak. Over the past 4 months the water has leaked from the well and now covers about 100 ft by 100ft. area. The water is about ankle high. We have had 3 different companies look at it and no one can tell where the leak is. I think its at the well casing but I don't know. I need help. The water pressure doesn't seem to have changed but it needs fixing. Is there anyone out there that can help me.

Reply:

Jan

You may need to call well repair companies from a wider area to find an expert who can help with the well leak you describe. There are several possibilities that will need to be investigated in order to determine what repair is needed. But indeed there are procedures for finding the point in the well casing where there is damage - if that's the problem - and often the well casing diameter permits the insertion of a well sleeve that repairs that section.

As long as the well recovery rate or rate of water flowing into the well is sufficient, you won't notice the leak as a reduction in water pressure. Water pressure is produced by your well pump not by the well itself

Question: mud problems in our water well

(May 11, 2015) donna said:
replaced well pump in Oct 2014, now filter is packed with mud and needs changed very frequently, low water pressure

Reply:

Donna:

Ask your well company or plumber for help: start by checking the height above well bottom that the pump is installed; if the well pump is too close to well bottom it may be picking up mud that can be avoided.

Other solutions: an improved well screen, or the discovery and repair of a crack or damage in the well casing that is allowing soil to fall into the well.

Question: is the wet area around our well casing a sign of a leak?

19 May 2015 Tim said:
I was digging nest to my well head today and discoverd some muck or more like light green ooze next to the the pvc pipe. When I dug down a bit deper I have found more. It all seems to be concentrated on one side of the pipe. Is this a leak?

Reply:

Tim:

I would dig enough to find the answer to that question. Certainly a leak at the pitless adapter or well piping near the casing is possible.

If it were groundwater I'd not expect it to be just on one side of the casing.

Use our email found at the page bottom CONTACT link to send me photos of what you see.

Tim said:
My well is 185' and I have not noticed any problems in the past. The house and well were constructed in 2006. The pipe going down is PVC.

Reply: all the more reason to look for a leak.

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