You are speaking in generalizations. Plenty of cities have wells for their
water and it is as pure as can be. Some have excelllent sources of surface
water and y es, it does require a bit more treatment.
I know plenty pf people with contaminated wells. "Everything from sulpher,
to oil, to benzene to whatever. We hae a well at work that is not suitable
for drinking and after spending $10,000, it is not suitable to feed the
As for cost, you may drill and hit water at 50 feet, or 100 feet, or 500
feet, or never. You can get into some really serious costs in some areas.
Again, depends on where you live. In my last house, never had power out
more than 1 hour in 15 years. This house, only once was it out more than an
hour (about 30 hours after a hurricane) in 25 years. What would the
payback be for me? Probably over 100 years. That would be just plain
OK, you got me there. I'm paying almost $9 a month for sewer but have not
had any problems either. I like that.
If only you were correct. You do NOT have any control over your water
supply. You pump what is in the aquifer. Do you read the newspapers?
Stories about hundreds of well being contaminated for one reason or another?
Happens all too often. Yes, there are 100 year old wells that are good pure
water, but there are 3 year old wells that will kill you.
Your situation is, evidently, is good for you, but the circumstances must be
considered for every location on their own merits.
With a choice, I would opt for city water/sewer over well/septic, if I
had a choice.
In situations where a very long line is run to get to city/county water,
the question to ask yourself is how long will it be before a closer
neighbor goes on city/county water?? Things have a way of creeping
closer and closer to you.
I will build a new home soon and city water is not an option. 100 ft
down or 600 feet down, water in this area has sulfur and varying amounts
of dissolved limestone.
Treatment for both will be required. Easy treatment for sulfur is to
let the water aerate before use, that is pump into a tank that holds at
least a day's worth of water, before going to a water softener that also
treats sulfur and calcium/magnesium.
Drain fields are FORBIDDEN by county law here. Clay content of soil is
so high and land is RULER flat. Septic effluent MUST be sprinkled.
Another way to have backup power is to add a solar array. This has the
benefit of net metering so that with a proper sized array, the utility
company sends you a small check each month. Course, this doesn't help
during a hurricane or tornado that cuts power lines for hours to days.
Only batteries or a generator will do that. Generator is MUCH cheaper
to acquire and install. Solar has immediate impact on power bill.
Thanks everybody for all the good input. Seems that I have some homework to
do. Also, I said "city water" but it is actually county (Henry county, GA),
and we are zoned RA if that makes any difference as to whether or not you
are required to hook up. No neighborhood assoc. either.
There is no sewer or gas service. We are planning on getting a tank for gas
though. So the only utilities coming in are electric (which will be
partially areial and partially buried), phone and possibly water.
I am not sure what the psi is at the meter (which is by the street, 1000'
from the house) but the largest hook up we can get is 1 inch.
If anyone is interested, here is a link to some pictures of the project. We
are actually getting the gravel driveway finished up this weekend and
getting rid of most of the stumps and wood. Some to be buried, some
chipped/mulched and some will be cut up for firewood. So I don't have pics
of the finished product yet but I will soon.
Not too far from you - western Douglas Co. Don't think zoning has anything to
do with it. I think distance and topography will be the main factors taken
into consideration. Call the county water company and ask. They can also tell
you an approximate cost for installation of the water line ($X.xx/ft) and
cost of the meter (IIRC was told that WSA wanted $200 for a meter when I
built in '97). Might be able to help a little with the "homework" - would be
happy to provide (via email) some specs and price of my well for comparison
if you want, would think that depth, pump and tank would be similar. Prices
are '97, but should give you a general idea that you can compare to any
quotes you get from local drillers.
I recommend purchasing and burying the tank instead of renting and having
above ground - if it's allowed. I understand some counties don't allow
underground propane tanks. I've got a 500 gal underground and only have to
see the hump part on the top of the tank where the fill pipe and pressure
gauge are - easily disguised. If you're interested in the cost (Dec '97),
email me by fixing the addy in the sig and I'll look it up for you.
FYI, depending on what you'll have on gas, and whether or not you want to
sign up for monthly topoffs, you may want to go with a larger tank - may be
able to give some pointers here too.
1 inch would probably work fine, but cost of installation of that length and
crossing the creeks would be my concern. Also, if your local water company is
like WSA (Douglas Co's Company), you'll be responsible for maintaining all
the pipe on your side of the meter.
As I recall, for our part of the country, the recommended depth for water
pipe is below 18" - although I think you could probably get by with a little
less if absolutely necessary. Since you've already bridged the creeks, you
may wind up with a large expense for special equipment to install the pipe in
these locations. Make sure you bring this point up with the water company if
they're iffy about signing off so you can get a drinking water well -
provided you go that route. If necessary, insist that they have a
representative visit the site.
Make sure of the regulations regarding burial of organics - Douglas Co.
requires that any organic burial site be marked on the plat, which means a
surveyor must determine the exact location and provide a new plat with the
burial site marked - this plat must be recorded at the courthouse too, IIRC.
Was explained to me that they don't want any construction to occur on an old
burial site to prevent settling. Considering what some of the developers have
done in the recent past, the regulation is probably a good idea.
Might be best to chip/mulch all that you don't cut for firewood or just leave
it to rot in an out-of-the-way pile. The mulched stuff is good to spread
along the sides of the drive until new growth can get started.
Great pix! Been there, done that (except the bridge) - lotsa good exercise
Looks like a great location. I still have a quarter mile as the crow flies to
the nearest neighbor for the moment - but that'll change in the
not-too-distant future since subdivisions are sprouting like toadstools :-(
(substitute strickland in the obvious location to reply directly)
Please send all email as text - HTML is too hard to decipher as text.
I know nothing about water, but can't you make pipe installation
pretty easy, including the streams, by going next to the driveway? Or
did you leave the trees right next to it (which I would understand,
except they usually want to get wide housebuilding things in there,
My girlfriend may have been a ditz, or just busy, but she told me for
months that her well had dried up, and I guess she was taking water
from work to her home, but eventually it turned out the pump had
BTW, why can't you get water from the creek? I live right next to a
creek, and I've wondered if I could drink the water. I keep meaning
to have it tested.
I guess the biggest problem woudl be upstream fertilizer, but maybe I
would finally get taller.
no biggest risk is animal dies upstream in creek, your safe water is
ground water should NEVER be used unless its continously treated.
stream water is excellent for irrigation and other nod potable uses
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