Well issues

rwhite Posted By rwhite, Jan 2, 2017 at 8:32 AM

  1. maple1

    maple1
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    You will do even better (electricity use & pump/tank life) if you drop your pressures even more. I mentioned in the other thread that ours is at 20/35 (or so). It seems to serve us OK. It won't blast you out of the shower, but it's certainly enough to wash the shampoo out. Overall savings likely depends how hard a time your pump has reaching that highest pressure though - our 3/4 hp convertible pump running shallow well mode in a what is likely actually a deep well situation struggles when it gets up over 35. But the one (main?) side effect is that at lower pressures, less water will be wasted in those 'tap left running' moments - which reduces your overall pumping even more. Adding more tank capacity will also reduce your pump cycles & give more reserve for power outage situations - adding another tank is on my to-do list here, somewhere...
     
  2. rwhite

    rwhite
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    Just 1 last check in to say I have no idea. Well blew air for 2 days and hasn't done it since. My only guess is the leak caused the pump to run so much it created a vacuum. One unintended consequence of fixing the leak was the following day the pitless adapter froze up. Probably would have done it sooner had water not been running all the time. For the time being I have a droplight hung inside the casing and insulated the heck out of it and put a trash can covering the well head.. It will have to do until I get the to dig out 4ft of snow and build a well house.

    Thanks!
     
  3. maple1

    maple1
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    I might have missed it - exactly what/where was the leak?
     
  4. rwhite

    rwhite
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    This

    I actually went around to every bare pipe with a stethoscope to find it. I ran the pressure again after adjustments and it held over night. Based on pressure loss and pressure tank size my calculations were about 2-300 gal a day going out the pipe.
     
  5. peakbagger

    peakbagger
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    Sorry that I am coming to this late but you mention at some point replacing the pressure tank. The new approach which is also more efficient is to retrofit a variable speed drive to the well pump. As long as its a three wire with an external capacitor Franklin electric sells a plug in replacement for the capacitor. With a variable speed pump, there is no need for a large pressure tank, just a puny one that can easily be hidden in the house. The pump doesn't cycle on and off abruptly it just speeds up and slows down as needed to supply a constant set pressure. With a set reliable pressure, most folks can lower run overall lower pressure. Franklin and other firms also sell a pump protector that monitors the pump operation and shuts it down if there are unusual operating conditions, like continuous leaks. They can be annoying as they usually kick the pump off when the other issue first occurs but all you need to do is unplug it and then you can diagnose the root cause. The pumps last longer as they are normally running at a lower speed and they don't get deadheaded when the pressure switch trips off. Its also a lot easier on the piping getting rid of the deadheading. There is potentially big electrical savings and if you ever need to run the pump off a generator it cuts the surge load down considerably so you an get way with a smaller generator.

    Obviously if you have low yield well without a lot of storage in the casing a big expansion tank my be preferable.
     
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  6. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot
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    When the time comes, I'd be interested in replacing my well pump with something that has less surge load. My current (deep well) pump is 240 v. - two wires with a ground wire. No capacitor in the house. What do you think would be necessary? Thanks.
     
  7. rwhite

    rwhite
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    I do have a low production well. 7 gal/min Pump sits at 350ft. I think its a 3 wire. The switch at the main power pole is routed into an additional box which may hold the capacitor (never opened it yet). As far as I know my pressure tank is still good but if there's ever an issue I think I will move it under the house.
     
  8. maple1

    maple1
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    This is for submersible pumps?
     
  9. maple1

    maple1
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    Ok, feeling dumb - I don't know what a frost free hydrant is.
     
  10. rwhite

    rwhite
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  11. peakbagger

    peakbagger
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    Sorry, my understanding is that if you don't have a three wire pump, you need to replace the pump.
     
  12. peakbagger

    peakbagger
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    Yes the retrofit is for deep well submersible pumps as long as they are the newer style with the external capacitor. They sell a similar pump for a shallow well suction type pump, but its a replacement pump unless someone wants to go inside and get at the start capacitor leg if one exists. I don't think it would work with jet pump (but I may be wrong).

    The reason for the remote capacitor is that it is the most failure prone part of a pump motor. If it fails with a two wire pump the well string has to be pulled. With an external capacitor, its just unplug the old one and plug in a new one. I also think the capacitor can get damaged by power surges
     
  13. brenndatomu

    brenndatomu
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    This could have lead to an amusing situation. (assuming no injuries/damage)
    Say it was some sort of gas leak...WOOOOF...fire! "911? Yeah, my water well is on fire!" ;lol
     
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  14. Highbeam

    Highbeam
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    If you held a balloon over it and filled it, would the balloon float? If you inhale it does your voice change? I would figure out a way to put a tire inner tube on it so that it made a three hour long fart sound!
     
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  15. Highbeam

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    Another solution to this is to install an unpressurized tank on the surface. Well pump just keeps it full, booster pump draws from tank and provides domestic pressure. This trick allows even a low producing well to provide fire flow for sprinklers, irrigation water, and satisfy other high demand uses so long as the storage tank is big enough. Also allows some interesting water treatment possibilities.
     
  16. peakbagger

    peakbagger
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    This happens down south, I knew someone in eastern tennesee who needed more water and was going to have the well drilled deeper. The driller would not do it as there was shallow gas seam in the area, apparently some of the people in the area had methane in their wells and they could light their water on fire. This happens in area where fracking is occurring where the contractors do bad job sealing the casing. If a neighbor complains they put in an air stripper which is same thing used to take radon out of water.
     
  17. peakbagger

    peakbagger
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    A lot of the folks with off grid wells do this, they have a small DC pump that pumps water while the sun shines. It fills a large storage tank preferably at a higher elevation then the house. They then either run the house on gravity or with a small booster pump. If the water needs to be purified they can put a UV lamp in the tank. It also can be done with tank in the attic but that adds a lot of structural and seismic load on the framing.
     
  18. rwhite

    rwhite
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  19. rwhite

    rwhite
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    Interesting. My parents did something similar prior to having a well. 1000 gal water buffalo that would gravity feed to 1500 gal of storage in the house. Jet pump would fill the pressure tank. Worked well but required an entire other building to house the tanks and keep them from freezing. I could envision a bladder under the house if i ever had volume issues but the 7 gal/min is adequate for my needs.

    Is there a dc pump capable of 350' pump in a 4" case?
     
  20. rwhite

    rwhite
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    Did quite a bit of research on this when a few NG well proposals came across my desk. From what I could gather was because of the expense of putting in the well the investors wanted a quick payload and would frack above the water table (along with poor sealing). Seemed that quite often fracking above the table in close proximity to water wells created some problems.
     
  21. Highbeam

    Highbeam
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    They call them cisterns.
     
  22. rwhite

    rwhite
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    And the difference is?
     
  23. Highbeam

    Highbeam
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    In the olden days, they used to build these concrete/brick tanks under the house or under the porch that held a lot of water for domestic use. The cistern could be filled by a well, a gravity spring, or buckets, but like your rubber bladder idea they acted as a reservoir to satisfy demands in the home.
     
  24. rwhite

    rwhite
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    There ain't a lot of digging that happens on this pile of basalt I live on. I could probably dig a 20 gal storage:). And a 3x4 hole is my only access under the house so a bladder ( technically a cistern) would be the only possibility. Either way i dont have any issues now to warrant such a system.
     
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  25. Lake Girl

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    A friend of ours had a cistern in their basement of a old home they bought ... eavestroughs/gutters were tied in to the cistern to bring rainwater in off the roof into the cistern. As I said ... old house and they did finally reclaim that part of the basement by removing the cistern and rerouting the eavestrough. The rainbarrels that can be bought now are the same idea only the water is used for watering gardens and grass only; not for human consumption.

    rwhite, glad you found the leak. As I was reading, I was wondering if it was the underground tank and fittings that were giving you grief. Tough to repair any of that in the winter.
     

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