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Old 04-25-2008, 05:08 PM
139 posts, read 543,372 times
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Hi, wondering everyone's opinion on Septic & well water, vs. public sewer and water...pros? cons? I have been researching houses in the area and find E. Hampton has mostly septic. I have lived most of my life in NYC and westchester and have not had to deal with it personally. Any info or advice?
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Old 04-25-2008, 06:48 PM
Location: New Milford, CT
104 posts, read 336,963 times
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I have both here in Maine. Make sure the well is an Artesian well (drilled) and not just dug. When I bought my house here I didn't know the difference (I'm from NYC what did I know) and the house came with a dug well that was only 30 feet deep. By July I was running out of water. I put an artesian well in which is 450 ft deep and I get a great flow of water and good tasting as an added bonus. The bad part of a well is when you lose power you lose water. Electricity runs the pump so unless you have a generator you are not going to have water. The good part is you don't have to pay for the water. I would make sure you find out if you can how old the pump is on any house you might be interested in.

As far as septic systems go I have had no problems with mine and I put a new one in when I bought the house 10 years ago. Again, make sure it is big enough to satisfy the number of people in your family and make sure it is empied by the sellers before you move in. There are obvious things you don't want to put in your septic system and I do put a box of RID down mine every month. I don't know if it helps or not but it can't hurt. I would ask how old the system is on any house you are looking at and find out where the leech fields are located. You want them accessible if need be.
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Old 04-26-2008, 06:42 AM
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We have a septic system. New leeching fields were put in 11 years ago when we bought the house; the previous owner in 30 years had emptied the tank once, so there was a draining problem. It needs to be emptied every few years, which costs about $200.00. There aren't too many rules about septic systems, but you shouldn't poor vegetable oils down the kitchen sink, use cleaning products containing bleach, or run the washing machine at the same time as the dishwasher. Our septic guy told us that it wasn't necessary to add products such as RID. So far we have had no problems with our septic system. It's actually been a relief, in our last house we had a public sewer system, which was always clogging. We had to hire a plumber on a few occasions to unclog the pipes, and our surrounding neighbors did as well.
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Old 04-26-2008, 07:33 AM
Location: Earth
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We lived in East Hampton and had both well and septic. I loved having a well. The water is the best tasting anywhere. You may find that you will need a filtration system. The area of East Hampton that we lived in had iron in the water. We put in a system to filtrate the iron and soften our water. Some of my immediate neighbors didn't have systems at all. It depends on what you may have in your water and how much of it there is. Some of it depends on personal preference as well. Some of my neighbors didn't have much and didn't mind the metallic taste. The systems will usually run you about 1 to 2 thousand dollars to have installed, depending on what you need and choose. Then you will have maintenance. We had our system serviced once a year at the cost of $75. We also had to add bags of potassium chloride about four times a year. The potassium chloride can be purchased at your local nursery, hardware store, etc. for about $20 dollars a bag. Our water had the perfect texture and taste and I never found a bottled water that could even come close. Again, some of it is personal preference and the house you buy may not need a filtration system at all. This is just something that may come up when you have a well. As far as how deep your well is, that all depends. You could have two houses side by side and one home has a well that is 6 ft deep and another is 12 ft deep. I actually saw this in my neighborhood. If you are building a new home then this can become a big expense as they charge you by the foot after a certain point. Just remember, if you have a pool don't try to fill it with a hose and don't leave a hose going all day and night. One of my neighbors inadvertently left their hose going for about 24 hours and drained their well. If you have children then their dentist will most likely prescribe flouride pills due to the fact that city water usually has flouride and your well won't. We have since moved and now have city water. I can't tell you how much I miss my well. The city water smells and tastes funny to me, even with filtration. I'm getting used to it but it will never be the same as well water.

In regards to the septic system. We had ours pumped every 1 1/2 to 2 years to avoid any problems. Some people will go as long as 3 years. If you do move to East Hampton I would highly recommend the two local companies, I can't mention their names as it would be advertising. It usually cost us about $150. As the other poster mentioned, it is important that your system is large enough for your home size and family size. Newer homes should be in compliance as the zoning laws are strict in this respect. You really should have a septic inspection as part of your home purchase contract. When the septic is emptied (paid for by the seller) the company doing so can tell you if the septic is the appropriate size. As part of the upkeep of your septic they suggest using finer toilet paper such as Scotts not the fluffy stuff like Charmin Ultra. I was also told to NEVER put bleach down the drain or toilet, such as the bleach cleaning tablets you can buy for your toilet. You should also use bleach in your laundry as little as possible. Bleach kills the good bacteria in your septic system.

I have seen the sewer bills that friends of mine have to pay in surrounding towns and I was always thankful I didn't have that expense. The same goes for water bills. You may have to pay for maintenance but I believe it all evens out in the end.

On a final note, East Hampton was my absolute favorite town to live in CT. Please feel free to DM me with any questions you might have about the area. Best of luck to you!
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