Things to Expect at a Well Inspection

Covered well

Well water and municipal water systems aren’t the same thing. If you’ve recently moved into a home with a well, one of the first things you may have been told is that you should get a well inspection. This is good advice. Components might need to be replaced, or there could be contaminants in the water itself. You won’t know until the work has been done. Before you finalize any paperwork or move into the home, it’s worth knowing the condition of the well and related equipment.


Many people assume the worst. They think the inspection will take forever, or they’ll have to wait weeks before they get to see the final results. Today, well inspections are quite a bit faster. Most inspections don’t take more than a couple hours to complete. You won’t have to take vacation time, miss work, or wait by the phone. From start to finish, it shouldn’t take more than 1-2 hours for the inspection process to be finished.


An inspection shouldn’t be incredibly costly. It varies from region to region and from one company to the next, but the average cost is between $300 and $500. It’s not free, but you could easily spend more on a cell phone or car repair. Considering how important your water supply is, it’s more than worth the expense. Obviously, the hourly rate will vary, but parts are a consideration as well. If a part needs to be replaced or a repair needs to be performed, this cost could easily increase.


This is one of the most crucial part of the inspection. Your water tank, fittings, valves, well, and pump all have to be carefully and thoroughly examined. Fittings and valves can become lose or damaged over time. Pump do an awful lot of work, and they can’t last forever. A well-maintained well can run for years with little issue. The condition of your well largely depends on how the previous owners cared for it and maintained it.


For most homeowners, this is easily the biggest concern, especially if you have children or elderly relatives in the home. Contaminants can spread disease or exacerbate already existing medical conditions. Water is always tested for iron, sulfur, and hardness. It’s not uncommon for water softeners to be used, since well water is sometimes harder than people would like. This is something you can consider after the inspection is done.

Water pump


The inspector will examine the components, remove the well cap, run the pump, check the water level, and test the water. Running the pump is always done for a period of time, so any changes or abnormalities can be identified. After all these steps have been completed, the inspector should present you with their findings.

The inspector may make recommendations as well. There could be repairs that are recommended but aren’t an immediate emergency. If it’s an older well, newer parts could prove to be more reliable or efficient. Obviously, these are recommendations, and you aren’t obligated to agree to anything. However, if your well fails the inspection, you will need to remedy any issues before the next inspection is conducted.

An inspection is critical before you move forward, but well maintenance is what matters most in the long run. Contact Environmental Testing and Research Laboratories, Inc., at 800-344-9977 if you have any questions or require a well inspection, testing, or maintenance.