water level monitoring
Application

Water Level Monitoring

Measurements of water levels in wells provide the most fundamental indicator of the status of this resource and are critical to meaningful evaluations of the quantity and quality of ground water and its interaction with surface water.

The Importance of Groundwater Level Monitoring

Groundwater is among one of the most precious natural resources. Measurements of water levels in wells provide the most fundamental indicator of the status of this resource and are critical to meaningful evaluations of the quantity and quality of ground water and its interaction with surface water. Effective groundwater management protects the quantity of groundwater and ensures a dependable and affordable supply of groundwater into perpetuity. It also protects the water quality to ensure that groundwater remains suitable for domestic, industrial, agricultural, and environmental uses and prevents land subsidence that can damage expensive public and private infrastructure such as water conveyance and flood control facilities, and water wells.

Monitoring groundwater levels can:

  • Help establish baseline requirements for annual and long term changes of groundwater in storage
  • Estimate recharge rates
  • Determine direction and gradient of groundwater flow
  • Help understand how aquifer systems work
  • Give insight for well construction and where to set pump bowls for efficient extraction

Types of Water Level Meters

Three types of devices are available to measure groundwater levels: Metal tapes, electrical well sounding devices and pressure transducers. Metal tapes can be used to measure groundwater levels by inserting it between the well casing and pump column until it contacts water. The use of chalk on the lower part of the tape improves the visibility of the water line and helps verify that it has contacted the groundwater surface.

The depth of water is then determined by subtracting the length of tape that was submersed in water from the total length of tape inserted in the well. Electrical well sounding devices are simple continuity detectors. The length of cable lowered down the well when continuity occurs is then noted as the depth to groundwater. Pressure transducers can be connected to a datalogger and, due to their cost, are typically only used for aquifer characterization and longer, continuous groundwater level measurements

Examples of Water Level Meters