well Pump variable flow control??? What to call it?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by MikeJoel, Mar 8, 2005.

  1. MikeJoel

    MikeJoel Well-Known Member

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    Not knowing much about well pumps (but learning quickly) I began thinking about the
    well. It has about a 190 gallon reserve when it is full.

    I am wondering if there is a device that you can attach above the pump (submersible) that
    would allow the pump to pump at its highest flow rate until the well water level reached
    the control's level and then would slow the pump down to a preset rate so it wouldn't
    empty the well.

    I figure it would be great to have such a device because then you could really make use of
    that reserve. I figure if my pump is running at 4.2gpm then no matter how much water is
    above it is going to run at that rate, while if there is such a device it could pump at 15gpm
    until the water level reached (say 10 feet above the pump then it would cut to the 4.2gpm
    so the well could slowly refill (even if the pump continued to run). This would allow us to
    use that big water reserve when we just have to have it.

    Is there such a device? What should I look for (calling it) if it does?

    Thank you
    Mike
     
  2. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    There is no such device! If you will reread my posts I have given you a workable solution. You will get the full draw down of whatever bladder tank you install and then you will have the capacity of the well until H*** freezes over without damaging the pump. You are trying to make this too hard and too expensive. I told you I have 5 rental units on 1 such setup. Renters complain if there is an inconvenience, I have no complaints regarding the water and I have less output from the well than you do but my well is somewhat deeper.
     

  3. Oilpatch197

    Oilpatch197 Well-Known Member

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    SouthEastern Illinois
    there IS such a device.

    Think about a toliet.....
    all you need is a Float and a stiff bar going to the top of the well, at the top the well you have a switch, when water level rises, it bypasses the pressure switch and turns pump on, that's the easy part, and when levels drop, pump shuts off.

    NOW THE HARD PART.
    how do you maintain 40p.s.i. to the water network and still have the ability to remove excess water?

    a HIGH FLOW, pressure release valve, something that will release the extra pressure, but yet shuts when your back to the normal pressure.

    000000000000000000000000000000(<--a plug with a 45# spring
    0...............................................Pushing against plug, when
    0].......\-lever and on/off switch.....Pressure exceeds 45 the valve
    0]..............................................will open and let out the excess
    0]
    0]
    0]
    0]
    0]
    0]
    0]<---stiff wire
    0]
    0]
    0]
    0Ofloat
    0
    0
    0
    0pump
     
  4. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    The well is 145 feet deep. It is going to take a loooong rod
     
  5. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I think you are trying to Rube Goldberg this thing. Keep it simple.

    Also go pricing pumps. A 4-5 gallon pump might be plenty $$$ for you. :)

    What did that 4.2 g/m actually measure, anyhow? It is a nice average number.... But, in dry periods your well could be slower. Likely, you can draw down your well rapidly at first, but as you get near 'empty' it will be refilling itself rather quickly and perhaps be providing 6 g/m. Kinda depends on who did the test & how.

    As I mentioned in the other thread, I have a 260 foot well with a pump below it. I don't remember the rating of the well, or the rating of the pump. I was 4 years old when it was dug. Anyhow, I have a cistern for the livestock, and a manual valve to fill the cistern. I forget it in the 'on' position - the well has run full bore for 6-10 hours at time. It will work best with a 4 g/m pump. You could go for a 5 I suppose, figuring it will cycle some (that's one reson you always want a pressure tank as I suggested) and give it time for recovery. A 5 gallon bucket of water in a minute is pretty fast. Test your current system now, see what you are 'used' to recieving for flow.

    You don't need to get so complicated. Fancy controls mean more breakdowns & more fuss.

    Me, I would be more worried about regulating pressure between all the different houses. That will be your biggest pain, houses on a hill vs houses in a low spot.....

    To keep everyone satisfied with their portion of the water, instead of trying to push up more & more flow, you can put flow restrictors on each house - use 3/8" copper pipe in each (I've seen pipe that small in basements!), or a flow restrictor at the main enterance - it's just a washer with a certain sized hole in a pipe coupling. This will give _everyone_ a somewhat slower water supply, but something they will become accustomed to and familiar with, and 'just how it is' so won't bother as much as water pressure variations. People are generally happy with less flow as long as the pressure stays the same. So design your system for a good trade off - keep pressure stable, even if it means less flow. People won't mind that trade.....

    --->Paul
     
  6. wy_white_wolf

    wy_white_wolf Just howling at the moon

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    I actually feel like Rambler too that it would be more hassle than its worth But:

    I've never seen a variable rate pump motor for AC. If you wanted to go DC, Shurflow's 9300 series can work at 12 or 24 volts. You would just need some kind of float/level switch that would control the voltage. The flow would be about 1/2 in 12V as it is in 24. Also the flow is affected by the amount of head a pump has to push. The specs for this pump are available all over the web.
     
  7. MikeJoel

    MikeJoel Well-Known Member

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    Hi

    Nope haven't forgotten anything in the posts :)
    I thought there was a device made that did that, because I ran across something like that the other day and could find it again.

    The well was drilled in late fall/early summer (about the dryest season in maine) and the water level was the same as it was two weeks ago when I checked 11 feet.

    If there is no such thing just forget it. Thought there was.
    Really I don't want to make it complicated. I was just bouncing and idea out to see if there was such a device.

    Actually I am finding that the pump wasn't as expensive much as I expected. The most expensive I was looking at was $450 for a 3/4hp (lowes having some Water Ace's for $319 3/4hp I know it isn't the best brand).

    Happily all the trailers are within 50 feet of the well on a gently slope (the lowest trailer probably 5 feet lower then the highest). I plan to use pressure control valves during the plumbing process.

    Thanks
    Mike
     
  8. moopups

    moopups In Remembrance

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    As far as a name goes I would call that a two stage pump system, does it exist for water supply? Not that I know of. I would place a bigger capasity water storage tank in line, if you need more pressure add a second pump that is triggered by low pressure after a few pounds are drawn off the main storage tank's pressure. Doubleing a water lines size increases the flow times 4.
     
  9. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    Remember the mentioning of the charts for selecting a pump. I do not think you have consulted a source with your specific info. IMO you will not need a 3/4 HP but I have not referenced a chart either but would if I were installing the pump. My intent is not to hound you but for you to have a viable and reliable system at a modest price. Buy a good brand pump, get a big bladder tank, plumb as was suggested, have a functioning water system that will last. Be Happy!

    PS...here is the chart and you do not need a 3/4HP I looked!
    http://www.aquascience.net/goulds_sub_5gs.htm
     
  10. MikeJoel

    MikeJoel Well-Known Member

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    Yeah. While I hadn't consulted a chart, looking over pumps I knew a 1/2hp would do the job but family members told me to look at 3/4hp just in case we either end up bringing the driller back to go a little deeper (they also think getting a higher rated pump will make it last longer since it is doing less than it was designed to max at).

    Your not hounding me :)
    I understand what you mean.

    Mike
     
  11. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    Provided you had an over abundance of water a larger pump could be an advantage but not in this case. A larger pump will only empty the well faster while delivering the same volume of water as the small HP pump. This is not a desireable feature as it would lead to the pump running without water and self destructing. Sizing the pump to the task is critical in your application. You are not going to have a supply problem with the well you have if you design the delivery system correctly.