Noel, No-Well…

When I was little, my dad used to sing us weird versions of Christmas songs. You know the one about “Good King Vince the Louse looked out on the Feast of Stephen, someone busted him in the snout, made it all uneven…” One of those caroles was playing through my head this last weekend. It went something like this, “Noel, noel, noel, no-well, we have no water cause we have no well.”

Now the song was only half right. We have no water and who knows what’s the matter with the well. Before we even moved in, we had work done on it. It was putting out water at a really slow rate, so we needed to make sure it could handle the demands of two teenage girls with long hair and lots of dirty clothes.

While Pierce, the well guy, suggested other work we might want to have done, we were still in the midst of buying this place, and if we couldn’t get the well working, it wasn’t going to happen. So we went with the bare minimum and forged on which was all good and well until last Saturday night. I was making dinner and washing up when I noticed the water pressure was way down. When we lived in town, that was nothing new, but out here we have great water pressure. I checked under the sink, and was pleased to notice no leak. The Mr had replaced the kitchen sink and put in a new faucet last month. I didn’t want troubles with the plumbing upsetting him at the end of a long day. Sometimes I’m so foolish, if only it was a leaky faucet….

When I mentioned it, my sweet, handsome man grabbed his flashlight and was off to the boiler room. Our 1,000-gallon water tank was empty, the well guy was on vacation. Huh, now what? The Mr’s folks packed up and headed off to visit friends a day early. I came to hate the little saying “if it’s yellow, let it mellow….” It was the beginning of three long days.

On Sunday, we tried to get a hold of a company that will come out and fill your swimming pool or you empty water tank. The guy was in eastern Washington fighting forest fires. That’s very noble–I guess I don’t need a shower. At that point, Baby Girl jumped ship. I dropped her off at a friend’s house and stopped by the store to stock up on some H2O.

Pierce the well guy was back that day and came by to take a look.  It could be a lot of things: a hole in the pipe, the propellers broken, the well’s gone dry. He was booked solid but would squeeze us in the next afternoon.

Monday, I saw this beautiful sight.

I don’t know what’s going on down there, but it’s got to be progress. The guys from JKA Drilling pulled the pump to test at their shop. So ended day two without a shower.

The next morning Pierce’s dad, who just had knee surgery, was back scaling our slopes. It was the pump–sounds of cheering filled the air. They could fix it today, but, and this was a big BUT, we would probably need a new one maybe not for a few years, but this well is on its way out.  We had them replace the galvenized pipe with PVC, replace the pump and the faulty wiring, and by 4:30, we had water coming in. By 9 that night, we were able to use the faucets and flush the toilets, but no showers until morning.

Happy Fourth of July, I was squeaky clean again.

There were a couple upgrades we talked about getting–an alarm so we’d notice when the well ran dry–but it had already been an expensive week. The Mr’s “99 F-150 blew its transmission. This was his truck–his baby–it meant a new vehicle way before we’d planned. He’s now driving a new Toyota Tacoma that rides like a dream. It has 4-wheel drive, so we won’t get trapped here next winter; and it’s beautiful. Besides, a truck is a must when you have to take the trash and recycle a couple miles down the road for pick up.

If and when we do drill a new well, we’re hoping to place it just off the driveway. Currently, in order for a truck to reach our well, they have to drive down the steep slope off the driveway, through the tennis court, and down through the meadow. It’s not a trip I’d like to take.

Vehicles have to drive through the shaded area and past the basketball hoop. Notice how the Mr pulled back the fence to make room.

If you ever have troubles with your well and live in this area, the guys at JKA were so helpful. Pierce told me he was working on the Fourth and he’d come out if we needed him–just call. Thanks to Pierce, Dad, and Oscar–you guys rock.

Now that we’ve got water back, I have some clothes to wash. Note to self: make sure your caught up on the laundry before the well goes dry.

Have you ever had water troubles? Been “camping” at home? I’d love to hear your stories.

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6 thoughts on “Noel, No-Well…

  1. Hay, “it’s all good”……….lessons learned, you survived! Nope, fortunately our pump on Shaw Island always was okay……it was the septic pump, the pond, the no sheet rock on most of the house, and only insulation in the baby girl’s nursery, only baseboards or the fireplaces and wood stove to heat. No complaints however…………..we did always have water!!

  2. We have had our share of water issues in our fixer upper. When we first moved in, I went down to the basement to find it flooded with about 2 inches of water – about a 600 square foot room. Ugggg. We have well water, too. And there was a leak where the pipe entered the house through the concrete. What a pain!! DH had to dig a trench and resealed the entry. Unfortunately that hasn’t been our only water issues, but they have gotten better!! With our well water comes a lot of sediment that even ate through our copper pipes. I have never understood how, but they would only spring pinhole leaks in the unfinished area of the basement – still a pain. Evidently DH has replaced all of the problem areas as we haven’t had that issue in a long time (knock on wood). I have more water stories, but don’t want to go on and on…

  3. Pingback: July Recap « bigwhitehouseonthehill

  4. Pingback: In Search of White–New Laundry Soap | bigwhitehouseonthehill

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