How to Disinfect a Well
To disinfect your home water system, you must completely spread chlorine throughout the well and plumbing system. Disinfection can be done by pouring non-scented household bleach (5.25% available chlorine) into the well.
While you are disinfecting your well, use bottled water for drinking and cooking.
To disinfect your well:
- Rinse the well casing and any other equipment inside the well with chlorine.
- Turn on all the water faucets in the home until you smell a strong chlorine odor.
- Turn the faucets off and let the chlorine stand in the well and plumbing system for at least 24 hours.
- Connect a garden hose to an outside faucet, and run water away from the house foundation and septic system until the chlorine smell is gone.
Note: Do not pump the highly chlorinated water into a septic system. Do not drain the chlorinated water into a natural water system or sensitive environmental area.
After the disinfection process has been completed, contact your local health department to have the water sampled. Continue using bottled water or water that has been boiled at a roiling boil for 3 minutes until sampling shows no contamination.
Since boiling water concentrates levels of nitrates in water, young infants and pregnant women should use bottled water instead of tap water for drinking and cooking.
For more information, visit the North Carolina Department of Natural Resources Division of Water Resources.