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Old 04-03-2011, 04:05 PM
 
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I've been doing some preliminary searching for a house in Wake county, and noticed that listings for a lot of homes in southern Wake state that the house has "community water."

I tried to search online, and it seems that community water is different than a individual well water system, but I'm not clear on the differences. Anyone have community water that can help?

Thanks!
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Old 04-03-2011, 04:47 PM
 
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A community well is just what it sounds like, a well that serves several houses or a neighborhood.

Theres also alot of houses up in the falls lake watershed served by a corporation known as Aqua inc, which has bought up a bunch of community wells and then sells the water back to the neighborhoods. My impression is this company is a bad actor, so if you are looking at a house served by them be cautioned and do some research.
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Old 04-03-2011, 06:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by toot68 View Post
Theres also alot of houses up in the falls lake watershed served by a corporation known as Aqua inc, which has bought up a bunch of community wells and then sells the water back to the neighborhoods. My impression is this company is a bad actor, so if you are looking at a house served by them be cautioned and do some research.
We've had Aqua for nearly 5 years and have never had a problem. Never heard any of my neighbors complain either.
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Old 04-03-2011, 06:26 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
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After reading the above post, I sent emails to two clients of mine that use Aqua and both responded. Neither of them have had problems nor have they heard of others in their neighborhoods that had problems.

Vicki
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Old 04-03-2011, 06:57 PM
 
Location: Wake Forest
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I am in northern wake county (wake forest) and we have a community well in our neighborhood (we have 36 homes in our development). Aqua owns our well, and yes, we are charged for our water. But, we have been very happy with them! Our water bills run about 20 dollars a month (my sister, also in wake forest but in the city limits, pays an average of 50 per month).

Our well went had difficulties the second year we lived in the neighborhood and they were very responsive. We ended up having to tap into another well in a neighborhood a mile away, and the work was done quickly and efficiently. During that time, we always had water (Aqua brought water to our well every day), and they stayed in touch with all of the homeowners regularly.

Leigh
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Old 04-03-2011, 06:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by NewUser View Post
We've had Aqua for nearly 5 years and have never had a problem. Never heard any of my neighbors complain either.
So in your experience is community water pretty similar to well water (taste, smell, softness, etc) or is it more like city water? I guess my question is whether the community water is just a huge well that replaces the need for a private well, or does a company like Aqua treat the water at all like a city would?
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Old 04-03-2011, 07:05 PM
 
Location: Wake Forest
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They treat the water. I grew up on a private well, and that is just a completely clean water taste (to me) with basically "no taste" if that makes any sense. This water, is more like city water, in that it is treated. It is not as "treated" tasting as the water I had in cary/apex, but it is still treated.

Hope that helps!

Leigh
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Old 04-03-2011, 07:28 PM
 
Location: RTP area, NC
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Our neighborhood has aqua -- and we haven't had an issue with them.

They have serviced the wells fine for the most part. The prior company (heater utilities) did a better job, but they were smaller and had more on their website -- eg: I think you could get to the testing history via their website.

I think the amount of treatment depends on the well. The wells are monitored and it keeps the pH within limits, etc. So, if your community has water that has a low (or high) pH, then it will get treated more than a well in a community that is pretty close. Same goes for chlorine, etc. Our tap water is fine -- very clean tasting. We can't tell the difference between bottled water and our water. I find 'city water' to be undrinkable with the taste.

We get a report in the mail yearly or every other year that describes the testing done with the results.

See: https://www.aquaamerica.com/NorthCarolina/Pages/home.aspx (broken link) You can click on the link for the full list to see all the neighborhood wells they service.

I remember seeing another thread with someone who had a rant against aqua - claiming their 'minimum bill' was $100 then water on top of that. You might be able to find it on a search. I remember it because I remember wondering 'why is the minimum bill so high?' and made a mental note to look at our minimum bill the next time we got one. Never did - forgot about it until now...

In any event, we don't have that kind of high monthly billing rate in our neighborhood -- our water bill runs on the order of $25-$30 'normal use' with 2-4 showers/day and a load of laundry and dishwasher run daily -- and upwards of $40-60 if we add watering a newly seeded lawn/running the sprinklers three times a week.
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Old 04-04-2011, 05:31 AM
 
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Originally Posted by BigMike30 View Post
So in your experience is community water pretty similar to well water (taste, smell, softness, etc) or is it more like city water?
My only experience with private well water is visiting my father-in-law's cattle ranch in west TX. His water is much more mineraly tasting. . . .stains the sinks with iron deposits, etc. But you can't compare west TX water to Raleigh water.

When we moved into our house 5 years ago, the previous owners had gotten suckered into buying a whole house filtration system and softener from Culligan. We used it for a few years, and because of the softener, we did not drink the tap water, preferring to buy bottled drinking water from the grocery store.

Since I knew that the water around here is rather soft to begin with, I had our water tested by an independent lab and it was indeed soft. Last year we stopped using the softener, but kept the whole house filter. We find that there is a fine red clay sediment that we would prefer to filter out. We change our filter twice a year and it is fairly orange/red when we replace it. Unfortunately, we got into the habit of using bottled water and we still do. Writing this response makes me realize that we need to stop spending that $2.50/week and just use the tap water for drinking instead.

I like the taste of our community well water better than most, if not all, of the city waters that I've ever had. City waters tend to be more chlorine smelling to me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigMike30 View Post
I guess my question is whether the community water is just a huge well that replaces the need for a private well, or does a company like Aqua treat the water at all like a city would?
Yes to the first, and I'm not sure for the second. It does replace the need for a private well, but I'm not sure how much the water is treated. My understanding is that most city water is pulled from the lake, and then treated. My water is pulled from an underground aquifer that has already used hundreds of feet of earth to filter it. I'd need to call Aqua to answer that.
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Old 04-04-2011, 07:34 AM
 
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I get my water from Aqua (I live in Johnston). We used to have a community well, and I don't remember any problems. However, when they finally ran county water into our subdivision, they closed the well and tapped into the county water (the lot w/ the well was sold and a house was built there). So I now get county water, but I pay less to Aqua than if I were to get it directly from the county.

Those of us that were on the community system at the time did not have to option to switch over to county water when it came in, only the new houses. I was kinda upset at first until I found out it ws going to be cheaper w/ Aqua (which was Heater Utilities at the time this happened). Prices ahve goe up since then, so i don;t know if I'm still cheaper or not. I've never had a bill over $20 (I live alone), so I'm not complaining.

Edit: we did get the notice about the new proposed overall increase. If memory serves, my bill may be actually going down a little for the minimum charge. The water usage charge is going up, though ($X.XX per 1,000 gallons charge).
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