Measuring the static head in an artesian bore

Measuring the static head in an artesian bore


An artesian bore is a bore where the water
flows to the surface without needing to be pumped. The static head is the maximum pressure
your bore recovers to when it has been shut down. If your bore has a static head of 10
metres it means that, if a pipe was installed vertically, water would rise to 10 metres
above the bore headworks. Your artesian bore is one of the most valuable
assets on your property. It is recommended that you measure and record the static head
in your bore at least once a month. An easy and accurate way to take a static
head reading for an artesian bore is to install a pressure gauge on the bore’s headworks.
Select a pressure gauge with the appropriate pressure units. For example if the static
head is 20 metres then a gauge that reads up to 25 metres would be required. You will also need fittings to connect the
pressure gauge to the headworks. Install the pressure gauge on the pressure
tapping point of the bore’s headworks. If you don’t have a pressure tapping point
available then you may have to install a T piece before one of the gate valves on the
headworks to create a new pressure tapping point. It is preferable to install a small gate valve
immediately before the gauge rather than connecting the pressure gauge directly to the pressure
tapping point. When installing the pressure gauge fittings
you need to open all gate valves so that it is easier to connect the fittings. Position the pressure gauge in a vertical
position so that it can be read easily. Use good quality thread tape to ensure there are
no leaks at joins of any of the pipe fittings. Any leaks in the set up will give a false
pressure reading. Measure the height of the centre of the pressure
gauge above ground level and record the measurement. If possible the bore should be shut off for
at least 12 hours before taking a static head reading. This gives the bore time to recover. The pressure gauge reading is 9.2 metres pressure.
This means water would rise to 9.2 metres above the gauge if a pipe was installed vertically. Record the actual time and date the bore is
shut off and the actual time the measurement is taken. If you make sure you record your
static head measurements, then it will be easy to check on any changes over time. You can submit the data using the ‘My Groundwater
Monitoring’ website. This inputs the data directly to Queensland’s groundwater database. Here is the link to the website. You can also submit your manual record sheet.

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