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Shelly

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For the last ten days or so, we've been dealing with a major water problem. Somewhere underground, the line has sprung a huge leak. If we leave the pump in the well on, it completely drains the well, so every day we run back and forth, turning on and shutting off the pump. The guy has finally showed up today with the backhoe and is searching for the leak, so far haven't found it yet. I'm thinking this is going to take a couple of days, so from now on it's ration the water that I do have saved in the bathtub and kitchen sink. This sucks! You never really know how much water is used in a home till you're without it. How did they manage in the olden days????? :???:
 

Shelly

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Booo! Hiss! :lol: :lol: :lol: Lo and behold, I think they've found it! I have water again! Whoohoo! Before I get too excited, though, I'd best go check and see if it's not just a temporary fix.
 

Mike

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Dear Shelly, I would be glad to fill some "Tangle Ridge" bottles with water and send them to you. :wink:
 

Heifer

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Shelly
We had that exact thing happen here in spring one year, and because of our rock and gravel, the water wouldn't come to the surface, so we couldn't find it either.

So we phoned a neighbour who grabbed two metal coat hangers, bent them a certain way, and went to "witchin.'" If I hadn't seen it with my own eyes, I wouldn't have believed it.... we turned the pump on, he walked our 420 foot line, and told us where to dig. The hoe started working, and three feet down the ground was getting wetter and wetter. When we got to the line, 8 feet down, he was within a foot of a big crack in the hose!

Maybe you need to go to the local coffee shop and ask around to see who witches. It can't hurt if your just guessing anyway. :D
 

Faster horses

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I can verify, 'witching' does work. My husband can do it, but our neighbor lady in W. Montana was very good. I never could do it, but she put her hand on my shoulder and it was amazing!! We had a forked stick and I felt it pull down on my hands...
 

Shelly

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Guess what folks? After two days of digging, found a hole, fixed it, buried everything again, and this morning.....WE HAVE NO WATER!!!!!!! I'm on the verge of losing it!
 

Maple Leaf Angus

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Shelly, how long is this water line? If it's that hard to fix wouldn't it be cheaper to dig a new one in? If the line is getting old , it might be better in the long run to replace it.
 

Shelly

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That's what I want them to do, but no one else seems to think it's a very good idea. It's a looong line. Goes from the watering bowl in the heifer pen to the watering bowl at the bull pen, and then through the trees to my house. This water line was put in the late 70's, and the moronic ex-brother-in-law dug the trench for it 16 feet deep! The guy is coming back Monday to start digging all over again. I believe my hair has turned white in the last couple of hours from all this! And I'm warning everyone I know that one little thing could set me off, and I very well could go postal!
 

Cowpuncher

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If your line is buried 16 feet deep, that is a major problem.

If you know exactly where the line is, you can drive a steel rod a couple of feet into the ground and put your ear to it. You can hear the water hissing when you get close to it. Don't know if it would work 16 feet deep, though.

Also, depending on the size of the line, you can insert a smaller line inside of it and push or pull it through. For example, you can put and 1 1/4 inch through a 2 inch line. Works for several hundred feet if you get a good place to work from.

Once in California, we had a leak from the water main in the street. Once they located it (by listening), they slipped a cable through the line. Attached was a spear shaped connector with blades. They hooked the new line on the spear and pulled the new line under the sidewalk and street. The spear split the old pipe and spread it out so the new pipe slipped right through the hole.

Also helped a neighbor slip a new black plastic pipe through an old steel pipe which went under a building and concrete.

If none of the above works:

We do our own pipelining. We rent a trencher (usually a Vermeer 8550 for $500/day) and dig a new trench. They will dig about 6 feet deep so that might not be enough depending on frost line. Depending on the soil, it will dig a mile a day.

If the water is for domestic, it won't be likely to freeze since there is usually warm water going through it every day.
 
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Shelly, if you are able to, I would abandon the old line and get a trencher like Cowpuncher said to trench a line. It would be a lot cheaper in most cases than using a backhoe to do the job. If you are having problems, or more than one problem, it would be easier to do away with the old line than to have problems when your ground gets froze. Jeez, I have never heard of a 16 foot deep line. I would abandon it as fast as I could. :!: Especially if it is old steel line.

If it is just around your buildings, then it can't be so terribly long, maybe just unhandy to do anything with. I would have to figure it out, but I know we have way over 100,000 feet of waterline here, and that is just typical anymore around here. No runoff you know.
 

Hanta Yo

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Shelly,

When we got here, almost 13 yrs ago, all the trenches were dug, lines put in place for all this water to go to different pastures. Since 13 yrs ago, we've dug up countless leaks. Our best investment was purchasing a skid-steer with the backhoe attachment. Not only can we attend to our own leaks, we rent out to the neighbors. WIN WIN situation. Can you talk your hubby into buying one? FWIW

Hanta Yo
 

Shelly

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The worst part about this is, because the line is 16 feet deep, the water will never rise to the surface. I almost have my husband convinced a whole new line is the way to go, trenched in at a normal 8-10 feet deep. Now if I can talk the guy who is doing the digging into it, all would be good. I did find out, a friend is bringing over another of his friend's this morning to see if he can find the leak by witching. I'll try anything at this point!
 

Denny

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You Better tell them winter is coming maybe they did'nt remember in a week or two the ground could be quite stiff...
 

HAY MAKER

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Shelly,you never did say how long that line is but.............if I were you I would insist on laying something temporary above ground till it was fixed right,I dont know how cold it is there now,and you might have to drain your temporary line at nites but at least you would have water............good luck
 

Manitoba_Rancher

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Shelly I really feel for you. Wish we were closer and we would come and try to help you out. I think the best would be to trench in a new line. And make sure you use nylon fittings, and stainless steel hose clamps for any joints. We ran into the same problem a couiple years back. When we finally found what was wrong the hose clamp and fitting had eaten away in the ground. Seems somebody used a steel fitting and a steel hose clamp..... :roll: ... Luckily around this place we only bury the waterlines about 8ft deep. Better get it done fairly soon as the weather coming doesnt look too great!!! Heres hoping for the best!
 

Shelly

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Well, one interesting thing came out of all this. I found out I have the ability to witch water. Who'da thunk it?!? I told my husband he could live with a witch or a b****, said he had the choice. He said he's lived with both for years now. A-hole! :lol:
 

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