Top Three Most Common Winter Well Problems

Winter’s barreling down upon us here in Connecticut, and now is the time for well owners to prepare for the problems that this cold and snowy season presents to us.

Here at Greco & Haines, we offer a range of well services to homeowners across Connecticut seven days a week and 365 days a year. We’re here to help you get ready for the rigors of winter and tackle any issues that arise during the coming months. Read on to learn more about common winter well system complications and how you can avoid and address them!

The Importance of Well Inspections & Repairs Ahead of (and After) Winter

The end of autumn is a perfect time to have your well system thoroughly inspected and tackle any necessary upkeep before the onset of winter. That’s partly because of the demands that winter weather can impose on your well, and partly because the frozen ground and heavy snow make maintenance challenging.

Let’s also look ahead and emphasize the importance of checking on your well water pump and filtration system. An early spring checkup, including water-quality testing, can identify damage incurred during the winter season and pinpoint potential contamination from snowmelt flooding or road-salt seepage. Check out this Greco & Haines Learning Center article to learn more about the value of post-winter tests of your well water quality.

What Are the Biggest Problems?

We identified the three most common and significant issues well owners face during the Connecticut winter.

Frozen Pipes

Frozen pipes are probably the first things that come to mind when thinking about winter well problems. Fortunately, much of the typical well system is protected from freezing temperatures because the bulk of it lies underground. Your well and the submersible pump lie below the frost line (about 42 inches down), as well as the supply pipe connecting the well to your home.

However, your aboveground water pipes are vulnerable to cold snaps and deep freezes if they aren’t properly insulated. The smaller-diameter pipes associated with your pressure switch are especially prone to freezing up. Frozen pipes can burst (given water expands when it turns into ice) and cause major leaks or impede water flow.

If they aren’t located in a heated part of your home, insulate pipes with foam sleeves, thermal blankets, heat tape, or other means. If frozen, pipes can be thawed with heat tape or a hairdryer. Open your taps upon discovering a freeze-up to relieve pressure and encourage water flow as you attempt to thaw the frozen section. You may need professional assistance if you can’t thaw out the frozen pipes or if you can’t locate the problem section.

Winter Well Water Pump Issues

Jet pumps can be similarly vulnerable to freeze-ups, potentially leading to expensive damage, water leaks, and interrupted flow from your well. If it isn’t already in a heated part of your home, you should enclose the jet pump in a well house or other insulating structure. Some use a heat lamp within this housing to provide additional protection from freezing temperatures.

Dealing With Wintertime Power Outages

Whether it’s a nor’easter bringing down trees or the ravages of an ice storm, we all know winter weather can wreak havoc with power lines. If you’re unprepared, a power outage can leave you with a cut off water supply.

It’s a good idea to invest in a generator, so you can power your well pump when the electricity is out. We also recommend acquiring a manual hand pump as an additional backup, as this can allow you to draw water in the event of generator failure.

Keep bottled water on hand for emergencies as well. This is standard practice for maintaining a disaster kit, as recommended by FEMA. At a minimum, a three-day supply of water should be a part of this stockpile, which helps you weather a variety of emergencies.

Turn to Greco & Haines for Help With Winter Well Problems & Well System Inspections

Has it been too long since you had your well system thoroughly inspected? Are you waking on a frigid winter day to discover weak water pressure—or no water coming from your well at all? Wondering how to repair a well pump in the midst of an ugly blizzard?

For any and all well concerns ahead of and during this next New England winter, don’t hesitate to contact Greco & Haines, your go-to Connecticut well water company! Since 1963, we’ve provided well owners all around the state with best-in-class service, and we do so each and every day of the year.You can get in touch with our team at 203-735-9308, 203-777-2256, or (toll-free from any Connecticut area code) 1-800-922-2958, or reach out via our online contact form.