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  • submersible pump keeps cycling

    I have a well, not sure how deep. The pump is a submersible pump, and it comes up to the bladder tank in the crawl space. I have noticed I can hear the pump kick on pressurize to around 55 psi then it shuts off. With everything off in the house the pump pressure decreases and the pump kicks back on. This happens about every 10 minuets. I went down and checked the guage and the differential pressure switch seems to be kicking on and off when it is required so I assume the problem is in the well or the line going to the well. Any suggestions on what my problem might be?

  • #2
    Tap on your bladder tank with a metal object. If it's full of water it will make a thud and that means that the air has been lost in the tank due to a leak. If it makes a ting ting hollow sound it's fine. If the tank is full, you can try to drain out the tank. Start by shutting off the pump's power. Then hook up a hose to it, (there should be a valve for a garden hose connection on your tank's piping) drain it, and turn the power back on the pump. Check all over the tank to make sure there are no leaks, Some tanks have plugs that can lose their seal over time. How old is the tank? If the tank is not full of water you are losing pressure in the system somewhere. Check for leaky fill valves or flappers on toilets they are the easiest culprit. If you have any leaky faucets or showers they will cause it too.

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    • #3
      i'm more of a city slicker than a country boy, so wells are a little off topic for me.
      is there a check valve or foot valve that might be leaking and causing the pressure to go back into the well?
      you can start by letting the pump come up to pressure and then shut off the pump power. then shut off all valves to isolate the pressure on the inlet and outlet. once you open the proper valve, you will be able to determine which side is leaking.

      hope this gives you an idea.
      i don't see too many wells. last one was a twin 600' deep well supplying a golf course and 1/2 million gallon storage tank. this then feeds the booster pumps to irrigate the golf course. doesn't seem to make too much sense with all the expense of maintaining these pumps, and paying for all the power to run this system. they have a 4'' main coming from the city domestic meter. seems cheaper to just buy water from the city?

      rick.

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      • #4
        Plumber Rick probably hit your diagnoses right on the nose with the foot valve. As soon as the pump shuts off at high pressure turn of the feed valve to the house. Watch your pressure guage (if one is installed, if not silently curse the so and so who installed your system and install one)If the pressure in your system falls back to where it has to refill your bladder tank you probably have a faulty foot valve or a leak in the pipe between your foot valve and the pump.

        Theron was also correct that the bladder in your tank may have failed leaving no room for storage, in which case event the smallest leak as from a faucet drip or bad flapper will cause your pump to cycle constantly.

        One other thing to consider would be a very old system that simply relied on the air being compressed on the top of the tank and not a bladder. Usually these are upright cylinder type of tanks. These have an air chuck which can allow for more air to be reintroduced into the system. This is not to be confused with the smaller bladder tanks which also have air chucks to properly charge the tanks to within 2 psi of the desired high side pressure.
        Work hard, Play hard, Sleep easy.

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        • #5
          Rick,

          With the water situation out west the golf course is right to not use the treated water from the city just to dump on the ground to make the grass a few shades greener.

          Lawn irrigation in this country is my biggest peeve with regards to water use and conservation. Americans cannot use more than 1.6 gallons of water to flush their fecal and other sanitary waste away from their homes, yet they can dump 50 thousand gallons of treated water on the ground every single month just to make their yards "pretty". The lack of common sense with regards to this contradiction confounds rational thought. IMHO
          Work hard, Play hard, Sleep easy.

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          • #6
            You may also have a leak in the house system- whether it be in the crawler or under a slab. Old galvanized pipes installed in the 60's are wore out and will start to leak- ususally on the hot side. Is your gas/electric bill higher trying to keep the water hot?

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