Category: News

Cribley Well Drilling Replaces Shallow and Steel Wells With PVC Wells

Today Cribley replaces Shallow and Steel Wells with PVC Wells

By Allison Clark-Dondzila

Cribley Drilling started out constructing wells in 1946. At that time well drillers across the country used steel to construct wells. Years down the road it was found that steel wells have an average lifetime of about 30 years. A steel well will break down over time creating a hole in the casing. Mud, minerals, and sand get into the well making the water supply impossible for household use.

It wasn’t until the mid to late 80’s that well drillers had approval from the State of Michigan to use PVC plastic to construct wells. PVC wells last much longer than steel wells. PVC casings will last 100 plus years.

Some homeowners have installed “point wells” or “shallow wells” in their homes, cottages, or cabins. These wells are hand driven and have an old style “jet pump” instead of a submersible pump, which is what we use today. A submersible pump is located inside the well head, it is submersed in water. These old style wells are usually located inside the home and the jet pump would be visible. They are known to fail because they are outdated and often must be replaced with a more reliable water source. Most shallow wells are ancient and have reached their lifetime. In some counties the environmental health department requires a replacement well for point or shallow wells before home sales or deed transfers.

Overall wells are much like a car: they need regular maintenance, part replacement, and if they have reached their lifetime they need to be replaced with a new one.

Don’t hesitate to call us for a free well estimate. Thanks to the internet we are able to research wells on your road/nearby area to help us choose a probable depth to find water. We would be happy to email, fax, or mail you an estimate for what a replacement well might cost. If you think a replacement well is needed at your home please call our office, we can have someone meet you on site and get started.

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No Water Conditions & Drought brought a Busy Summer to Cribley Well Drilling


No Water Conditions & Drought brought a Busy Summer to Cribley Well Drilling!

Written by Allison Clark-Dondzila

2012 brought us an early spring and a hot, hot summer. There was plenty of heat, but not enough water.

This was the busiest summer for well service and repair that Cribley has seen in at least 30 years. The drought conditions brought us “NO Water” calls from Washtenaw, Livingston, Oakland and JacksonCounties. Keeping our 24/7 emergency crews working around the clock.

The shortage of water was most prevalent in the Saline area. These calls came from subdivisions where homeowners were without water due to the dropping water table. Water tables also dropped in parts of Ann Arbor, Dexter, and Milan.

Once water levels dropped it affected neighbors with wells on the same water table. Substantial irrigation and household water use, without rain, caused water levels to fall below well pumps causing “no water” conditions.

Cribley Drilling ran two service crews to keep up with the demand for well service. The crews got on site as quickly as possible getting homeowners back into water and often worked until midnight.

The drought of 2012 affected some homeowners more than others due to their heavy usage of water. With no rain, plants were dying and homeowners were using more and more water. In some cases we suggested that homeowners stop irrigating if they wanted water for household use.

There is a science to where each pump is set. Pumps are set below the draw down level. With no way to anticipate the unusual weather we experienced or the effect it would have on water tables crews were busy lowering pumps 20-30 feet at each home, putting the pumps back into the water table. Many pumps were damaged and needed replacing.

Of course irrigation wells were in great demand. With so little rain, Cribley had contractors, golf courses, homeowners, home associations, and farmers requesting estimates for irrigation wells to feed their landscapes, ponds, and crops. There was a waiting list just to estimate these jobs meanwhile Cribley installed commercial and residential irrigation wells left and right.

This has been one of the driest years on record (see the chart at top of page).  It’s hard to believe July’s average precipitation was only 3.6 inches in Michigan. Recently we have gotten some relief but more rain is needed to return water tables to normal levels.

In Michigan we are surrounded by the Great Lakes, the largest group of freshwater lakes on Earth. But, we still need rain to maintain our water levels.

It was a successful summer for Cribley; our experienced service teams would tell you they were just glad to be able to help.

A special thanks to Ken Burke and Ben Wheeler for running our main service crew and 24/7 emergency service. More thanks go out to Tod Stevens, Scott Baldus, Dennis Amburgey, and Jack Wynn for working after hours, Saturdays, and emergency service.

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