Protecting Your Well Water From Pesticide Contamination

As a water well owner, you know how important it is to maintain a safe, uncontaminated water supply. Aside from regular testing and remediation, there are extra precautions you can take to keep your water clean. Many people who own a water well use it for irrigation, meaning they are using pesticides on the same property as their well water supply. If you use pesticides on your property or live near somewhere that uses them, you need to take care of your well accordingly. 

Pesticides And More

Pesticides are chemicals used to control weeds and pests that affect plants. From commercial farms to residential gardens, pesticides are relied on to keep things growing.  However, there is not a ‘one-size-fits-all’ pesticide that people use. They can be broken down into different categories: insecticides control insect infestations, nematicides control worm infestations, fungicides kill mold and mildew, and herbicides control weeds. No matter what form is used on your property, they can pose serious health risks if they enter your well water supply. 

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Health Risks

Pesticides in the well water supply are never a good thing, but the health risks involved depend on a few different factors. The amount of pesticides, the type of chemical, the longevity of exposure to the chemicals, and the person’s health all affect the severity of pesticides in the water. Overexposure to pesticides has been shown to negatively impact the eyes, skin, nervous system, cardiovascular system, gastrointestinal tract, living, reproductive system, kidneys, endocrine system, and even blood.

Children as especially susceptible to the health risks of pesticides because of their smaller size and the fact that their internal organs aren’t fully developed. Pesticides are even suspected to affect the immune system and potentially cause cancer. Do not underestimate the severity of pesticide poisoning. 

Entering The Well Water Supply

So how exactly do pesticides enter the water supply? If pesticides are used near your well, that does not guarantee they will enter your water supply. Properly drilled and designed wells have protections in place to keep contaminants out of the water. Wells that are shallower than 50 feet, 30+ years old, damaged wells, or wells surrounded by sandy soil are at a higher risk of contamination. Pesticides enter the water supply by seeping through the ground and bypassing the casing or seals of the well that are designed to keep them out. Also, pesticides are filtered out as they travel deeper into the soil, so shallow wells will have a more difficult time keeping them out. 

Pesticide Best Practices

If you are the one spraying pesticides, it’s important to use the best practices to prevent well contamination. First, make sure never to spray pesticides right before it rains or right before you turn on your irrigation systems. This will make it easier for the chemicals to penetrate the soil and enter your well. Make sure to accurately measure the amount of pesticide you require, overloading chemicals increases the chances of contamination. Pesticide spraying equipment should always be calibrated so the correct amount of pesticide is applied. Finally, always mix, pour, and store your pesticides carefully – spilling them directly onto the ground will send a high concentration of hazardous chemicals toward your drinking supply. 

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Protect Your Well Water

If you suspect your well is contaminated with pesticides, stop using your water and call a professional as soon as possible. Unsanitary water can cause serious health risks, especially for infants and pregnant women. Be sure that your family is safe and call a professional to test your drinking water. A1 Well Drilling & Pump Service can help with all of your well treatment needs. We offer a variety of treatment services to help with all of the different problems that may occur. We will test your drinking water and ensure it is safe for consumption. If you think there is lead in your drinking water or you just want to be safe, give us a call today!

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