Bad jet pump or well problem?
We have a cast iron red lion rjs-50, not sure how old but probably more than 15 years. It pumps from an old shallow well for the horse tank. It's been a dry winter, and over Christmas when we were out of town the fuse to its power outlet blew. Jet pump was only electrical item on circuit. Now the pump runs but doesn't deliver. Prime is held, and both pressure gauges register 0 pressure, and the pressure tank does not fill if I open the valve between pressure tank and pump. If I remove the top priming bolt when pump is running, no water comes out. Seems like pump just isn't working while it runs. Could it be clogged?
I'd like to know if this is a pump or well problem. I don't have any experience with the well (or any other)-- it is at least 60 years old and I don't know how deep, but definitely quite shallow. I think the problem may have started with water table dropping too low, as well as the pump needless running due to poor adjustment of horse tank float. After I replaced the fuse, the gauges did show pressure the first time I powered up the pump, and some water did fill the pressure tank. Later that day, however, the pump was running constantly without delivery, prime still held.
We've had enough precipitation and above freezing ground since Christmas that I would think the shallow aquifer would have recharged if that was the problem.
The cost of a replacement pump is not much more than a visit by the professionals, but I am reluctant to pull apart the well unless I need to. Any suggestions on how I could test the pump in place before I open that can of worms? I also have a mobile 1hp jet pump that I might be able to use for testing well if it comes to that.
Thanks for any suggestions!