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Old 05-23-2009, 09:32 PM
 
Location: Hawaii
48 posts, read 121,522 times
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Default Pahrump Water issues?

I've found myself looking more and more at Pahrump and kind of liking what I see. However, I keep hearing different things about water issues. House's are sinking? PLENTY of water (or not)? OK, plenty water but is it BAD water or what?
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Old 05-23-2009, 10:12 PM
 
Location: NW Las Vegas - Lone Mountain
15,757 posts, read 20,280,033 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SharkyV12 View Post
I've found myself looking more and more at Pahrump and kind of liking what I see. However, I keep hearing different things about water issues. House's are sinking? PLENTY of water (or not)? OK, plenty water but is it BAD water or what?
The water table in much of Pahrump is sinking at about two feet per year. When you buy a house or a lot there you will get a disclosure that says exactly that. Required disclosure. So you dig you well 100 feet too deep and you are set for 50 years. You won't live forever so that should do it.

What happens in a 100 years or so is left for the student.
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Old 05-24-2009, 12:00 PM
 
Location: Hawaii
48 posts, read 121,522 times
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Because the water table is dropping I assume this is the cause of some homes sinking. If/when I buy there it would be helpful to know what questions to ask! I'm thinking, how deep is the well, when it was drilled, might be a good place to start. I would also assume some areas have a greater sinking syndrome than others. Is there a web site or other place to "drill down" and do some deeper research on these issues?
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Old 05-24-2009, 01:25 PM
 
Location: NW Las Vegas - Lone Mountain
15,757 posts, read 20,280,033 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SharkyV12 View Post
Because the water table is dropping I assume this is the cause of some homes sinking. If/when I buy there it would be helpful to know what questions to ask! I'm thinking, how deep is the well, when it was drilled, might be a good place to start. I would also assume some areas have a greater sinking syndrome than others. Is there a web site or other place to "drill down" and do some deeper research on these issues?
I believe there are a couple of localized areas that have had problems with subsidence. It is not wide spread. Get hold of an RE Agent that has been working Pahrump for a few years and they will know all about it.

I do not believe it is a big problem in Pahrump.

On a well you want to know the water level, the pump location and the depth of the well. Should all be avialble.
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Old 05-25-2009, 01:54 PM
 
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I know of only 2 houses in ALL of Pahrump that have sunk.. both in the same area.

The water issues are no where NEAR as bad as might be reported.. lots of anti growthers are now creating this water issue out of thin air.. because they do not want more people moving here.

FWIW our entire street here has septic and town water.. not well. Not really a huge issue. I would have liked to have a well.. but its ok.
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Old 05-25-2009, 04:11 PM
 
Location: NW Las Vegas - Lone Mountain
15,757 posts, read 20,280,033 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chinga View Post
I know of only 2 houses in ALL of Pahrump that have sunk.. both in the same area.

The water issues are no where NEAR as bad as might be reported.. lots of anti growthers are now creating this water issue out of thin air.. because they do not want more people moving here.

FWIW our entire street here has septic and town water.. not well. Not really a huge issue. I would have liked to have a well.. but its ok.
The problem is your town water comes from a well. The water table thing is pretty well known.. hard to do anything about as there are permits galore around...date to when they grew cotton in Pahrump...the aquifer is likely oversubscribed 3X.

The disclosure is required by Nye County I believe and is a standard disclosure in all Pahrump transactions. So I suspect it represents reality.

If Pahrump gets a lot bigger it could turn into a real problem. If not you wait for 200 years and then do something...or shut her down.
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:28 PM
 
Location: Hawaii
48 posts, read 121,522 times
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Heck by then Lake Mead will be dry and the whole state will be in serious trouble!

Thanks for the advice all around, I appreciate it. I DON'T expect to buy a place in Pahrump and make a big profit down the road. I'm thinking more about where I want to retire FIRST, investments second.
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Old 05-26-2009, 08:20 AM
 
Location: Sheridan, WY
355 posts, read 957,890 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by olecapt View Post
T

If Pahrump gets a lot bigger it could turn into a real problem. If not you wait for 200 years and then do something...or shut her down.
Pahrump doesn't need to get bigger for there to be a real problem. As rapidly as the water level is dropping, there's real potential problem now, depending on where you are in the valley, and there's going to be a huge problem later.

The cost of deepening wells is substantial, but that's not the full story. As the water table moves deeper, the quality of the water can change, as well as the amount of water that can be extracted. One example: We had an irrigation well that produced quite nicely for years; the water level was dropping, so we looked at deepening the well.

Below the bottom of the existing well at 245 feet, however, was a 250+ foot layer of solid clay. Clay strata in wells are very, very poor water producing formations. So putting 250+ feet of hole through that clay at $100/foot (this was an irrigation well and the costs of drilling are much higher) was just not a financially sound option. Where are clay strata in valleys? Well, that requires some work with a drill rig to find out.

People who are near the edges of the valleys in Nevada can lose their water entirely when the water level deepens in the middle of the valley. I'd need to draw a picture of the geological formations to give you the full explanation, but think of many valleys in Nevada as being a "bowl" that is filled with alluvium that has decayed/eroded off the mountains on the sides of the bowl. At the edges of the bowl, you have hard rock, which is often not a water-producing formation either.

The water in Nevada valleys is a result of snowmelt and precip on the surrounding mountains that runs down into the valleys. Once the valley is pumped down faster than the sustainable recharge rate, you can start running into problems at the margins.
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Old 06-05-2009, 11:16 PM
 
Location: Toronto
17 posts, read 5,887 times
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I think water issues are every where. At some places abundance of water troubles and at some places scarcity of water.
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Old 06-06-2009, 01:08 AM
 
Location: Hawaii
48 posts, read 121,522 times
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The bowl idea reminds me of the aquifer we have on Oahu, as do many islands around the world. The fresh water floats on top of a salt water layer, in the "bowl". If you drawn down the fresh water faster than our local rainfall can recharge it, the fresh water becomes contaminated. If that continues to long, to much, it can take decades for the aquifer to become useable again.

I remain somewhat skeptical, but a news report I saw said the rain that falls TODAY will take 20 years to reach the aquifer. I wonder how long it takes in Nevada for the snow melt to make it to the "bowl"? What happens if the Nevada bowl is drawn down to low? Contamination of some kind?
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