A common question among homeowners is whether it’s safe to fill a pool with well water. Yes, you can fill a swimming pool with well water. But before you do it, there are essential factors you have to consider.
Learn more about these factors, the pros and cons of filing a pool with well water, and how to maintain a healthy swimming pool.
Using well water to fill a pool has a variety of benefits that we’ll discuss below.
Filling your swimming pool with well water is a pocket-friendly option as compared to a pool water delivery service.
Well water is a cheaper alternative than municipal or city water. You only have to ensure that your well has a reasonable flow rate.
Unlike municipal water, well water is not metered, meaning you don’t have to pay a bill at the end of the month. You can use as much water as possible without worrying about high utility bills.
Everything with benefits has some drawbacks, and well water is not an exception. The following are some of the disadvantages of using well water to fill your swimming pool.
Well water contains high amounts of minerals and metals, leading to the pool wall’s discoloration and staining. Metals like iron and manganese can cause bacteria growth, while calcium can result in clogged pipes and filters.
You have to treat the well water, which can be more expensive for large pools.
You risk running your well dry, especially if you want to fill a large pool. Additionally, filling a swimming pool with well water is time-consuming as it can take a few days.
Consider the following things before using well water in your pool.
Consider whether the well can supply adequate amounts of water to the swimming pool. Pools require considerable amounts of water and must be filled from well-stocked wells. But this mainly depends on the well’s supply and your pool’s size.
The well’s flow rate is the gallons of water your well can generate in an hour and how quickly the water flows into your well from the underground reservoirs.
A well producing less than 150 gallons in an hour has a low flow rate, while a well generating more than 600 gallons in an hour has a high flow rate.
A well with a high flow rate will fill the pool with a lot of ease. However, a well with a low flow rate might run dry when filling a pool.
It’s also advisable to check whether you share the water table with neighbors. The well’s flow rate might decrease if you share the water table.
During the dry seasons, the flow rate is likely to be low, and your well may not supply ample amounts of water for your swimming pool.
Well water stays underground for a long time before it’s pumped, and because it’s not treated, it may contain traces of metals and minerals that include:
The above metals can be problematic when they get into your pool. For instance, calcium hardness can clog your pool pipes and filters. Too much iron or manganese in the water can cause bacteria growth.
Excessive iron can turn water into a brownish-green color, staining the pool’s walls. The stain can also affect the swimmers’ hair, especially if they dye it.
Well water contains a lot of minerals, ions, and metals. They force your filters, pumps, pipes, and hydraulics to work extra hard, leading to your pool filtration system and pump wearing down more quickly than if you use municipal or delivery service water.
As a result, you will have no option other than to replace your equipment regularly. If your well water contains high iron and manganese levels, you have to replace your pool liner more often. If you are ready for all these maintenance costs, you can fill your swimming pool with well water.
Are there many people using the well water? If there are many dependents on that well, filling your pool with water will be challenging. An overused well might run dry anytime, especially if it has a low flow rate.
Below are the must-do things before you fill your pool with well water.
Never fill your swimming pool with well water before testing it. You have to test the water to check if it contains high levels of metals, minerals, bacteria, or other water contaminants.
Testing will help you know if your filters will clean the water effectively and the best treatment methods. It’s advisable to use test strips to give the most accurate readings.
If your well water contains high metal levels, ensure you treat it using the most suitable method before filling the swimming pool. It takes a long time to balance the water’s chemistry, but it will help you prevent bacteria growth, filter damage, and discoloration.
Minerals and metals in well water can affect the water’s pH levels and alkalinity. Therefore, if you plan to fill your swimming pool with well water, ensure you know the water’s chemical imbalances.
You can easily balance the water pH for a crystal-clear pool although the process might take more time. If your well’s pH is too low, use a pH+ basicity corrector to treat it. If the water’s pH is too high, use a pH- basicity corrector to treat it.
You can also use a pool clarifier that gathers small particles and puts them together into big, scoopable pieces. Chlorine shock is an all-purpose pool treatment you should consider because it helps you get rid of algae, bacteria, and other contaminants in the well water.
Filling your swimming pool with well water is not that easy. Here are detailed instructions on how to fill a pool with well water.
Pools vary in size. They range from several thousand gallons of water to 40,000 gallons of water. Your well must produce at least 10 gallons of water per minute; otherwise, you will have difficulty filling your pool. Divide the pool’s volume by the well’s flow rate to know how long it will take to fill it.
Testing well water is a crucial step since it will save you some money in the long run. Draw a bucket of well water and ensure it’s not contaminated to avoid false readings.
Use a drinking water test kit and pool water test kit to test the water. If the well water has high amounts of metals and minerals, you will have to treat the water or opt to get water from other sources.
Purchasing water for your pool is expensive while treating well water takes more time and can be frustrating if you don’t know what to do.
Attach the garden horse to the well pump’s tap, and connect the hose filter. The function of the hose filter is to pre-treat water and filter out minerals, metals, and other contaminants.
Switch off the pool equipment and switch on the well’s pump. The pump will begin pumping water from the well into your swimming pool.
Please note that it’s impossible to fill your pool at a go despite your well having a good flow rate. It’s advisable to take breaks after several hours. Filling a small swimming pool can take a day, while a large pool can take two to three days.
After filling your swimming pool, switch off the well pump and detach the garden hose. You have to test the water once more. Use a pool water test kit to test the water quality and a drinking test kit to test for minerals and metals. If there is any metal in the water, you can add chemicals that hold the metals in place, preventing staining.
You also have to test the water’s pH; if it’s too high, you try to lower it, and if it’s too low, you raise it. You can also switch on the pump and filter the water. Allow the pump to run for some time and retest the water’s pH. Repeat the process until you obtain the correct chemical balance.
Ensure you properly maintain your pool by cleaning the filters regularly and brushing the pool’s well to eliminate buildup particles. Maintain the water levels. At no time your pool water should go below the skimmer intake pipes. Shock your pool by adding chlorine to the water to stop organic contaminants.