|St-Jerome on the 16th of April, 2017.
You can choose all aspects of home building. The control is practically godlike giving us a feeling of mastering a creation. Yes indeed except there are two things you cannot preplan;
1) The geology that fosters the quality of the well water, the depth of the well and the resulting usable flow rate.
2) The quality of your neighbours.
For #2 not much can be anticipated until you are in that next door relationship, but for your water quality, there are certain things you should know before you finalize your plans in order to avoid the future pitfalls awaiting many.
More and more builders are being required to install biological bacteria digestion type septic systems. In Quebec you have the Eco,Enviro and Bio brands that are widely installed. These type of septic systems share the same major drawback and the Environment Ministry seems to think this is so insignificant and not worth legislating a new rule. I'll call these systems "Septic" just to save repeating.
The problem with Septic is when buyers purchase them they are under the false belief that Septic will take care of all household wastewater discharges but that is not the case.
In the event that the well water, that we know we cannot "control" in advance contains elements like sulfur, tannin, manganese, iron, hardness, etc., in levels that makes its usage next to impossible or at best undesirable, the home will require 1, 2, 3 or 4 pieces of water treatment to make it usable, potable, useful and pleasurable. The problem is Septic does not permit you to connect drain lines to it because it does not "like" such discharges. In fact if you read the fine print there are a host of things you cannot discharge into your Septic system leaving the homeowner in limbo when they require water treatment.
This could be easily mitigated with one rule. All homes with well water should always have a Sump Pump with a discharge pipe leaving the home underground and inclined leading to either an underground or open pit and/or floor drain(s) that DO NOT lead into the Septic system but to the same inclined discharge point.
So here is what we see very often. After three years, a client is fed up with their bad water but have a Septic and no Sump Pump or independent floor drain hence no way to discharge the drain water from any proposed and required water treatment solution. During the three years the outside landscaping was done with care at great expense. Now they have to call in an excavator and dig a trench leaving one of the basement walls to where the pipe will discharge. Sometimes they have to dig that trench through their freshly paved driveway plus the landscaping then has to be redone so all this added expence just because the builder wanted to save on the minor expense of a sump pump.
This would not be a recurring problem if the building code required a Sump Pump anytime a home is built connected to a well.
We just thought you might want to know this before your plans are finalized.
Here are some other points to consider in your home building plans about well water treatment criteria.
1) Don't skimp on the size of the mechanical room. You will need a pressure tank and pump switch that controls the well pump. Your water treatment needs will be installed near the pressure tank and will require at least 2 feet by 6 feet of floor space and at least 75 inches of height to cover the needs of 85% of situations, but sometimes we requires more space.
2) It is good to have a dedicated electrical plug with its own breaker (consider a surge protected breaker) to eliminated static from other connected apparatus like microwave ovens, freezer compressors, heating systems, etc., so as not to put the electronics of the water treatment systems in jeopardy during the off of a power failure and the power surges when such are turned back on again.
3) When preparing the home plumbing it is always smart to design the outside garden hose connection to be fed by one line leading directly to the pressure tank so that they do not become treated by the water treatment system.
4) Along with the plumbing pipes run a 3/8" polyethylene tube from, where the pressure tank is to where the kitchen sink will be located and leave both ends open. This will allow the owner to install any required pure water system in the basement saving precious kitchen under counter space.
5) Consider installing a second faucet at the kitchen sink for pure water consumption only especially if the counter is marble requiring specialized 1/2" drilling tools that the plumber will have on hand.
6) For surface wells, consider installing a submersible pump in the well instead of a centrifugal pump in the basement. This will eliminate the pump noise each time you take water plus the pressure and flow rate will be much better.
The main point is installing a sump pump when building the home. The other points we have listed are there to help you better understand the many conditions and considerations one should cater to in order to ensure your smoothest migration to a nightmare free well planned water treatment system.