Buying Tips: Water Wells
Water wells have been around since 7500 BC and are obviously a tried and true utillity. The oldest known water wells are in Cyprus, but wells for home drinking water go back to 1820 in the United States. Wells are very common around Breckenridge. Summit County's rural character and low population density favor a distributed water system like this because many homeowners have purposely built outside of town for the solitude, privacy or quiet. Buyers shopping for real estate may be surprised to find their potential Breckenridge home has a well and that the town water services cover a very small radius and are just not available.
When a home is located off municipal water and sewer systems, well water is a great and proven alternative. Many well water users think their water is superior in taste to the nearby town water. In the long run, it's also cheaper.
The depth and quality of water wells can vary greatly, but most of those established in Summit County are quite deep. This means their reservoirs are not easily affected by surface contamination but are more expensive to drill.
For homes using water wells, often the waste water option is an Onsite Wastewater System (OWS) or a Septic System. State laws and county laws protect homeowners by requiring that wells are located a significant distance away (50 feet from a septic tank or sewer line and 100 feet from any leach field).
Breckenridge well permits are recorded with the Colorado Division of Water Resources, 303.866.3447. To obtain information on a water well and forms, visit the Colorado Division of Water Resources website.
BEFORE YOU BUY
Before purchasing a home, another advisable test to ensure that you have adequate water is a well pump test showing how many gallons per minute the well pumps and the recovery rate of your well.
Contact these well water inspectors for testing:
- Blue River Home Inspections (Roger Hollenbeck), 970.389.7006
- Blue Valley Water Specialists, 303.567.4128.
The buyer in a residential real estate transaction that includes the transfer of a registered/permitted well must complete a Notice of Change of Owner Name/Address Form with the Colorado Division of Water Resources prior to or at closing. The Title Company handling the closing will usually provide the Notice of Change form that the buyer signs and mails to the Colorado Division. If the subject well is not of record with the Colorado Division of Water Resources (no well permit), an application to register must be completed by the buyer in lieu of a Notice of Change of Owner Form.
Testing is the only way to identify the presence of contaminated groundwater. There are three main reasons to test your water:
- To ensure safe drinking water.
- To evaluate the need for treatment.
- To select an appropriate treatment device.
The Summit County Department of Health suggests that you should test your water for bacteria and nitrates at least once a year
For more information contact the Summit County Environmental Health Department, 970.668.4070