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Country Discussion Topics
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Springs/ springhouses
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Michele Russell    Posted 06-11-2003 at 15:55:19       [Reply]  [Send Email]
My springhouse is at the nadir of several hills that are grazed by cattle. Before I bought the house, the water failed an ecoli test. So they installed a 5 micron filter and a uv light thingy to kill germs. Paranoid, we boil any water we take into our mouths still. Nonetheless, the situation with the spring is this: The springhouse is cinderblock, roofed well. The footvalve inside it that sucks up the water (pump is inside my house) is only about two feet from the bottom of the springhouse which is covered with sediment, or maybe it's just earth. Don't know. So, when I pump water, I think it stirs up the sediment and I have to change those 5 micron filters every 3 or 4 days at $2.50 apiece.

Should I excavate the spring by hand this summer? I read in another message (by glen sw wi)that if you excavate through the rockbed the water runs on, you could lose the spring. Should I try to deepen it? there are some big rocks in there. Do I dare throw them out? Will the bottom fall out of it and I'll be cast into an underground sinkhole?! This is my only water source.

Richard Chandler    Posted 07-02-2006 at 10:53:57       [Reply]  [Send Email]
view my springhouse, the only one in Florida. come drink the purest water in the world.

Michele Russell    Posted 10-10-2003 at 14:27:39       [Reply]  [Send Email]
A follow-up to the spring problem. My real
estate agent, sent from heaven, got into the
springhouse, stirred the water up and
dumped it out of the house in a 5 gallon
bucket. The spring filled back up real fast,
though, and the water still seemed dirty.
Turns out, between the cinderblock of the
house and the rock of the land, there was a
gap and the puddle of water surrounding the
springhouse was backing up into the
springhouse. The puddle was there because
our watercress had grown so thick it had
choked the downhill progress of the water.
Anyway, with the puddle and the crack, dirt
seeped back in immediately. So my sweet
boyfriend, a stone mason, used hydraulic
cement (?) to fill in the gap and the water
stopped coming into the house from the
puddle. Then we cut back the watercress
until the water flowed downhill again. So now
the water is twice or thrice as clean and I am a
happy lady. Thank you to you all for your

buck    Posted 06-11-2003 at 23:15:24       [Reply]  [No Email]

We have a very good spring on the place and at one time it served 3 homes. It is the head of a stream that provides water for a number of peoples cattle. When used for the homes there was an occasional need to clean by brushing the silt from the stones and removing some silt build up in the bottom. My uncle later installed a pump with footvalve as you have but then he drilled a well as the spring would not test well.(co. engineer insisted that a septic field be placed 150' UPSTREAM of the spring). Anyway what Grandma and Grandpa would do is vary the level of the water in the spring to fit their needs.The had boards with notches that would allow the water to be held at different levels. Like on butter making day Grandma would remove the boards to allow the water to lower so she could work with the crocks and pots better and later replace them to have the crocks an pots sitting in more water to keep them cooler.I point this out so that you may get he idea that raising your water level and foot valve could solve your probem of stirring up the silt. We also have another neighbor who provides water to two homes from a good spring and what he has done is to pipe from the spring by gravity with a 2" pipe to a concrete holding tank that holds about 2000 gal.Overflow is provided back to the stream originating from the stream. Each home has a pump in the tank that sends water to the home.

markct    Posted 06-11-2003 at 21:16:53       [Reply]  [No Email]
my grandparents are on a spring that they own, but due to some agreement years ago,three other houses have water rights to it also, a few years back they had the exact same problem you are having, we were able to start a siphon with a long piece of pool vacumm hose(the spring is on a hillside) and we vacumed out all the sediment and junk that had acumulated in the bottom, this helped the problem tremendously, they still had a few water test problems but for the most part it was very pure. then about a year ago they finaly had a guy come in and build a new springhouse, the new one was a much tighter buildning, and they changed the drainage on the hillside to keep out surface water, since then they have had zero problems with there water tests, so those are some things to consider

TB    Posted 06-11-2003 at 16:43:36       [Reply]  [No Email]
I would try cleening it first
Most spring houses and spring boxes were made with drain plugs for cleening. Look around for one. broom it down and flush it out.

If not maybe you could rent a small portable pump so you could vacume the bottom with it.

Before I would start diggen I would install a low cost canister filter ahead of the rest to catch the bigger stuff. So there isn't as much to plug the other filter

I would dig only as a last resort.

Michele    Posted 06-11-2003 at 16:46:21       [Reply]  [Send Email]
thanks. i will try sweeping and vacuuming the floor of it first, as you recommended.

TB    Posted 06-11-2003 at 16:55:29       [Reply]  [No Email]
If you have too just keep it stirred up intill the current carries it away. Good luck

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