Hillside Water Wells

Question from a Reader: What is the best way to shut off your water in case of emergency? Answer: Flip off the breaker switch!
Unless you have lived for decades with a water well, or experienced a 3 AM emergency, you know it is often difficult to remember that it takes electricity to pump water.

To flip off the breaker, you must have a 30 amp (perhaps as high as 50 or as low as 20 amp) breaker specifically dedicated to your well pump. You must also know where that breaker panel is located. Some homes will have two or three panels.

Take time to locate the breaker that controls your well. Make sure that it is well marked and easily visible, preferably by a bright, legible sticker. Remember that, in an emergency, everyone should know the location of this panel, both family and house sitters when you are on vacation.

Occasionally the breaker panel for the well is in the crawl space. If this is the case, or if your panel is not very accessible in the middle of the night, it is wise to move it to an accessible location.

Other high-amp draw appliances should also have their own separate breakers, especially for emergencies like fire or earthquakes. It is also important that there is nothing else on these breakers, so that each high-amp draw appliance (such as your well and stove) are separated.

All residents should know how to turn off their water and gas at the source and should walk through these emergency procedures at least once a year.
Do you have a question about your well? Email Wayne at w44west@gci.net and he will answer in next month's issue! Opinions expressed in these articles are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect Municipal policy.