Water Problems: Episode One


| 5/29/2015 2:44:00 PM


Tags: Spring Water, Water System, Jennifer Quinn,

Jennifer QuinnOne of the things I loved about my new home was that it has spring water. What my realtor didn’t tell me was that spring-fed systems are usually DIY jobs that require some maintenance on the part of the homeowner. So a few days after moving in, imagine my surprise when the water suddenly fizzled while I was washing dishes! The next morning I went out to the holding tank and hauled off the cover to find the water level almost down to the bottom. There was nothing coming out of the supply line – not even a drop.

Water line in stream 

I discussed the problem with a neighbor and was told the previous owner often had to take an air compressor and blow back through the line to get it unclogged. Another neighbor said the line would periodically get airlocked because there’s a section of it that goes uphill. The grandson of the former owner said his pappaw would use a sump pump to pump water back through the line and unclog it. I found all this quite confusing and, lacking the equipment or the skills, didn’t see myself attempting any of these procedures – especially since I didn’t even know what the problem was.

I knew the previous owner had purchased rights to another spring on a nearby property, and I had wondered why – was there some problem with the original spring? Fortunately a neighbor who also draws water from that spring knew about this, and said my predecessor had put a water line up there and never connected it. The neighbor, whom I’ll call Carl, offered to connect this line up to the barrel he used as a reservoir, and said he could then connect it to my existing line, though this might involve some digging and I’m not sure what else.

First he took me to see my existing spring, as well as the one I was to be connected to. This was quite a novel experience. The first spring, at the back of the “holler,” was in an enclosed box, but to access it required a certain amount of bushwhacking. While we were there Carl cleared quite a bit of leaves and debris out of the box, something I would never have thought of doing. Then he took me up to the other spring – a hike up the ridge that involved passing two waterfalls, following a hard-to-find trail, and sometimes pulling ourselves up by whatever we could grab onto.

Finding the path

appellate
6/8/2015 1:12:22 PM

Hi, Jennifer - Marvelous blog! Love your writing and photos. We remember calling you on Christmas Day about a month after you'd arrived at Panther Hollow when you were still having to fetch water from the crik. Who'd have thought the kid from New York City would become such a successful homesteader! Best, Appellate Squawk


appellate
6/8/2015 1:11:20 PM

Hi, Jennifer - Marvelous blog! Love your writing and photos. We remember calling you on Christmas Day about a month after you'd arrived at Panther Hollow when you were still having to fetch water from the crik. Who'd have thought the kid from New York City would become such a successful homesteader! Best, Appellate Squawk





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