Yet another well/well pump question...

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by MicheleMomof4, Mar 24, 2004.

  1. MicheleMomof4

    MicheleMomof4 Well-Known Member

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    Oh my goodness Im about to shoot my DH. Ok here is the NEW problem for those of you who remember the last one. Which was fixed, thanks to Agmantoo.
    When the water is turned on in the house the pump cycles on and off to deliver the water, causing the water to spurt. When the water in the house is turned off, the pressure builds back up to set amount then clicks off at which point the pressure drops down to about 4-5 pounds shy of clicking on again. Now here is the part that TOTALLY confused me....when you turn on the water hose outside just slightly it will do it BUT if you turn the water hose all the way open it does not have any of these problems. Further more if you turn the power off to the pump and turn on the spiket next to the pump it only has about 5 gallons of water at most come out before its empty. Which seems to mean thats the only amount of water in the tank????
    Give you some info on our system, we have standard tank shallow well water jet system. The pump, foot valve and check valve are all new, were replaced about 3 months ago when we had the first problem. It has worked like a charm since the fix.
    Any ideas? Any direction you can send us in before I dig a hole not for water but for my DH's grave LOL
    Thanks!
    Michele
     
  2. JWH123

    JWH123 Well-Known Member

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    My first guess would be that the air cushion that is in your well tank is not big enough.

    Water is an incompressible fluid - you cannot compress it. So, if you had NO air at the top of your tank, every time you took a drop of water out of the spigot, the pump would have to turn on, because the pressure in the system would have gone down to zero as soon as you took the tiniest bit of water out of the system. And then, the pump would immediately shut off, because it would only have to pump for a fraction of a second, because as soon as that one drop gets put back into the system, your pressure would be high again.

    When you have an air cushion in the tank, you can draw a good bit of water out until the AIR pressure (which is exactly the same as the water pressure) drops below the cut-in value of your pressure switch. The air will compress while the pump is running, until it reaches the cut-out value of your pressure switch, which will turn the pump off. Again, you can draw water out of the tank and the aire will expand and get lower in pressure until the pressure switch cuts in again and turns the well on.

    The spurting is what makes me think you don't have enough air in the tank.

    As for how much air you should have, I have no idea.

    Good luck, and put the gun down! :)

    John
     

  3. Windy in Kansas

    Windy in Kansas In Remembrance

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    John is correct in my opinion that you are needing more air in your tank. What you have is what has always been called a water logged pump in my area.

    When the outside hose is on, the pump is running continually providing the flow, not the tank.

    With the pump shut off there is plenty of water in the tank, but with a lack of air pressure to force it out, no more comes out than the 5 gallons you mentioned.

    I would recommend shutting the pump off. Withdraw some of the water from the tank, usually there will be a spigot on a lower portion of the tank itself. Then add some compressed air to the air fitting on top of, or on the side of the tank. Then turn the pump back on. See if that doesn't make a difference. In my opinion it should.
     
  4. Kung

    Kung Administrator Staff Member Supporter

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    Agreed with the others....I actually just HAD this happen about a year ago, and had to replace my bladder tank because I had an older model that couldn't be fixed.
     
  5. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    Refresh my memory, is this a bladder tank? I think it is. Provided I am correct, set the air in the tank to 2 pounds lower than the cut on pressure (typically 20 or 30 lbs, watch the gauge on the system to verify the cut on pressure.) of the pressure switch. This 2 lb below cut-on is set using the schrader valve in the top of the bladder tank and with the tank empty of water. (Turn the power off and empty the tank as you mentioned above when you got the 5 gallons to get this condition.) Restart and the system should now perform correctly.
     
  6. fordy

    fordy Well-Known Member

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    ............Some benchmarks to use when evaluating your problems: Your pressure switch should be activated at 40 psi on the low side to activate the pump to Refill your Tank. Take a Regular Air gauge for tires that will go to at least 80 psi and CHECK the pressure of the Air Bladder at the Lowest psi JUST PRIOR to the Pump being Activtated. IF.....the psi gauge says 40 when the pump is kicked ON then You should have 40 psi inside the airbladder . IF the psi is LOW, TURN the pressure switch OFF and then reinflate the airbladder to 40 psi. Now Turn the Pressure switch Back ON and allow the pump to complete fillup the Pressure Tank. AFTER the Pump shuts off the Pressure Should remain Constant....untill you turn ON a fawcett. If, the pressure starts to DROP, .......the CHECk VALVE is Probably Faulty and is allowing the Water in the tank to BACKFLOW back into the PVC pipe and into the casing . There are several different types of pressure switches with VARYING Pressure Setups. It very well maybe that YOUR pressure switch is SETUP for a 30\60 psi OFF and On settings. I used 40\60 in my discussion because that is what my values here are for MY water well. .......fordy... :) Post back after you've evaluated your pump !!....the Valve stem to check the pressure on your (new) pressure tank is Usually on TOP of the tank......it may have some kind of plastic cover to protect IT....fordy
     
  7. MicheleMomof4

    MicheleMomof4 Well-Known Member

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    Its not a bladder tank, the tank itself is fairly old but I do have a way to pump air into it..just need to add a fitting. Tell me how much do I put in it?? And the fitting for us to add air is at the bottom of the tank not the top, is this going to matter?
    Thanks guys, you saved my DH's life.....for now LOL
    Thanks again,
    Michele
     
  8. fordy

    fordy Well-Known Member

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    Momo , if there is any conceivable way , you need to chuck that OLD style tank. They are so MUCH trouble to maintain an air bubble in the TOP of the tank that they are virtually worthless in my opinion. You need to procure a 100 gallon tank and hook it into your system. They are really easy to hookup. You should beable to order one from either Lowes or Home depot. ....fordy.... :eek:
     
  9. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    Michele,
    If you have a typical 40 gallon tank, add air and run the pump until it cycles off. When you get a full 5 gallon bucket of water during drawdown you will have enough air. That will be 5 gallons of water delivered, under pressure, from where the pump cycled off to where the pump cycles on again.
     
  10. Wanda

    Wanda Well-Known Member

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    Michele
    Turn the pump off and open the hydrant to relieve the press. Open a line below the level of the tank and remove the plug located on the top of the press. tank. When you remove the tank plug this alows air into the tank as water drains from the bottom!! Drain out 5 gal. or so and put back the top plug, close water drain and restart the pump. This is the only easy way to restore the air for head in a nonbladder pump. It will be second nature to do it when you have cycling problems, this was second nature to people before the bladder type tanks came on the market :)
    Mr. Wanda
    Mike
     
  11. Farmer Brown

    Farmer Brown Well-Known Member

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    When set up as intended and not cobbled together they give super service. Last up to 30 yrs. I had a bladder tank. Lasted 5 yrs. Went back to old style. Never have to add air as the setup does this automatic for me. Those who run these down have little experience in water systems. FB