Radium in well water


  #1  
Old 02-07-17, 07:16 AM
W
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Radium in well water

So when purchasing the house a couple years ago we were told a radium test was not necessary for the area as the rates were low.

After having our baby and having minerals added to the well we got a test done just for peace of mind.

The radium levels were quite high
Parameter Results
Gross Alpha 58.3 +- 5.5 pCi/L

Is anyone familiar with the options available? A new well was quoted at 18k, which in the end may tap right into the same problem. And with a price that high we'd be taking food off the table.

I'm trying to find a safe go-between that will help treat the entire house, as it's not just drinking from the tap, but also a baby chewing on his toys in the tub.

May be a shot in the dark here, but if anyone has any experience with this it would be greatly appreciated.
 
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Old 02-07-17, 09:37 AM
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I'm guessing you mean radon....a lot different than radium.

Radon is fairly easy to remove from well water, either with an aeration system or a good activated carbon filter system. Either should cost you a *lot* less than a new well, which very likely would not solve the problem.

If you go the filter route, I suggest you look at a dual filter system with backwash, so you always have a filter on line and its effectiveness is not so dependent on you remembering to change the element.

I suggest you consider having an airborne radon test done as well, since obviously there is radon in your area.
 
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Old 02-07-17, 09:56 AM
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The test was indeed for Radium.

I called the county health works and they told me that for the levels I have a water softener will get it to an acceptable level. They recommended a reverse osmosis device be put on the kitchen sink as well to double up.
 
  #4  
Old 02-08-17, 07:17 AM
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hi whaturmuvaĖ

If it were me I would get another radium test just to be sure. Iím very cynical and distrust test results from anyone who can profit from remedial action. I donít know whether that would apply to your case Ė but I would get another independent test just to be sure anyway.

I get my annual water test from Penn State Agricultural Dept. Ė they never try to sell you equipment. I just checked all my reports however, and it seems that they donít test for radium. They test for lead and a lot of other things Ė but not radium.

Maybe you could check the U. of Maryland and see if they could do a radium test, or maybe try another school somewhere.

My understanding is that a whole-house water softener can correct a radium problem but I know thatís not a cheap solution. However I guess itís a lot cheaper than a new well Ė and as you say a new well might not correct the problem.

I donít know whether this is possible, but in principle it seems like it should be; Is it possible to take a water sample and treat it to a softening process and then get the result analyzed. In other words, take a sample before softening and another sample after softening, to know what the results of a permanent installed softener would be, rather than installing a whole-house softener only to find out that it did not have the necessary impact on radium.

It seems like that would work, but maybe itís not that simple to try some kind of temporary makeshift softener. But If it were me I would explore that a little bit.
 
 

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