Recharge wells and why we need them

All about recharge wells


A recharge well helps you return to nature what you have been taking from it but only until you need it again…

Imagine you are enterprising enough to have set up a rainwater barrel and have even convinced your neighbours and friends to set up some.

Moving forward, with a recharge well in your neighbourhood or your apartment complex, you will return to the ground what you took from it — water – for reuse at a later date.

What is a recharge well?

Basically it is the direct opposite of a pumping well. A recharge well pushes back surface water into the groundwater system. Usually, a recharge well is one metre in diameter and six metres deep, lined with concrete rings having perforations. These perforations let water seep from the sides. The rings line the recharge well from bottom to top with a steel or concrete ring closing it.

Rainwater that gushes down terrace drains, and surface water flowing in storm water drains, can be filtered, de-silted and recharged in open wells.

Complemented by an aquifer – an underground layer of water-bearing permeable rock or unconsolidated material such as sand, gravel, or silt – a recharge well helps increase the groundwater table.

How much does a recharge well cost?

Between INR 8,000-12,000 depending on the diameter and the depth.  A recharge well of one metre diameter and six metre depth has capacity to store around 5,000 litres water. What it pushes into the ground varies between 2,500 litres and 10,000 litres daily.

A 3ft diameter and 20ft deep well, can recharge groundwater from nearly 1,000 square metres, which in a year of normal rainfall of about 900 mm means about 1 million litres water. Think about it!

However, before you rush out to get a well digger, do remember that a location has to satisfy certain conditions to have a recharge well. The catchment areas should be clean and free of pollution, and the well should be safe from contamination. There’s also regular monitoring and maintenance involved for water levels and quality. It’s not a ‘fill it, shut it, forget it’ job.

What’s in it for me?

In the larger scheme of things, enough water to never go without this elixir of life. When groundwater levels increase, there is more for bore wells to pull out for basic consumption. According to India Water Portal, in Bangalore alone, as much as 3,000 million litres falls daily as rain during the monsoon. On one acre, this works out to roughly 3.6 million litres annually. If the city manages to recharge even 30%  of the rainwater it gets, it will have more that what the Cauvery River is supplying currently to the city, minus the huge energy bill.

If that doesn’t impress you, what does?

Here’s an interesting video on a home with a recharge well, from Zenrainman (S. Vishwanath) on youtube:


Catch Every Drop is a campaign on sustainable water conservation by The Alternative, sponsored by Arghyam, with partners India Water Portal and Biome Environmental Solutions.

Whether it is the Cauvery river dispute, the unregulated proliferation of bore wells or the death of Bangalore’s beautiful lakes, everyone has a story, an opinion or a question on water. While most people understand and recognize the importance of saving water, not everyone knows how to do it, or even what exactly they can do.

‘Catch Every Drop’ is a showcase of stories of pioneering water conservation work done by corporates, lake restoration groups, Resident Welfare Associations (RWAs) and individuals in Bangalore. These stories, we hope, will inspire you to join this growing community of people who truly care about water, our planet’s most precious resource.

This informati0n has been put together with the help of Biome Environmental Solutions.


  ABOUT THE AUTHOR
The future is not a result of choices among alternative paths offered by the present, but a place that is created--created first in the mind and will, created next in activity. The future is not some place we are going to, but one we are creating. more

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  ABOUT THE AUTHOR
The future is not a result of choices among alternative paths offered by the present, but a place that is created--created first in the mind and will, created next in activity. The future is not some place we are going to, but one we are creating. more

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  • Manoj Kumar

    Nice post and explaining every detail about water recharge method….