Nitrates/Water Treatment

nyc_sportApril 15, 2011

Our weekend house is on well water in a farming area. Water test showed high nitrates (13 PPM), and a few other simpler issues that need to be addressed (low Ph, hardness). I know the experts will ask what the acual numbers were, but I do not have them here. It is a new house, 4 baths, 2 kitchen sinks, but for now only two (part time) residents (landscaping, hoses, etc. use a different well).

Water treatment company is coming to the house tomorrow. He seems to be in favor of RO filter/water dispenser for the nitrates issues, which I am not at all a fan of. If there is only going to be one slow going spigot of drinkable water, I will stick to the 5 gallon water dispenser we have been using for years, and avoid putting more holes in our rediculously expensive counters. He seems against the resin whole house nitrate treatments -- says they are not "approved" in our county for residential use and there is some issue with chlorides in backwash and disposal of byproducts.

Can anyone comment on potential issues/downsides of ion exchange or other whole house nitrate treatments?

Thanks very much.

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Do you have a fairly shallow well? If so, drilling deeper will often locate nitrate-free water. If that is not an option, ion exchange is the only feasible way to remove nitrates from all of the water in the house. Discharge water from regeneration will be, however, high in nitrates which is a disposal issue in many areas. Check that out for yourself to ensure you have the correct information.

RO is another option, but you don't seem to like that idea. If the major concern is only one faucet, you can install faucets wherever you want, one at each sink if you like. However, that will entail more holes in your counters. Since this is just a weekend house, the bottled water dispenser is probably your easiest, cheapest solution.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2011 at 4:56PM
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Thanks AW. The well is new and definitely not shallow -- 100+ feet. We had hoped for better water than the old 60 foot well (now used for landscaping) -- it is better, but still not great.

We are going with an ion exchange with a softener and Ph treatment.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2011 at 9:34PM
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I hope everything works out for you - water treatment can certainly get tricky. I admit I did laugh a little when you said you well was not shallow. That would be quite shallow here. My well is 283 ft and that is not particularly deep in my area, but we have very sandy soil in my part of the world - have to go deeper to get to good water. It's all relative.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2011 at 11:08PM
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My friend's well is 600ft (supposedly) but the pump is around 300ft.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 12:43AM
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Thanks for the input all. The whole-house solution will be installed next week. And after AW's observation about well depth, I learned that I was sadly mistaken (perhaps explaining why it cost almost $10K to drill the well). We are on a 100+ foot bluff; the well is 100 feet below the water level, or about 250 feet.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2011 at 7:20PM
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