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Thread: Constantly running well pump

  1. #1

    Default Constantly running well pump

    I have a well with a submersible pump. The well is approximately 70 feet from my home. The well tank is buried about 3 ft from the well about 4 ft below ground level. There is a 4" PVC pipe rising from the well tank that houses my pressure switch. My pump runs constantly which is great for the pressure inside the house but horrible on my electric bill. This has been going on since the well tank and pressure switch were replaced 1 year ago for the same problem. I was told that the old tank bladder probably had a leak in it. I have lived with the problem till now but it seems incredibly wasteful for the well pump to run constantly plus I wouldn't want to burn it up. I suspect that this is related to the pressure switch. The line from the tank to the pressure switch is filled with antifreeze so it doesn't freeze.

    If I replace the pressure switch do I need to take any special precautions because of the anti freeze?

    How do I correctly set the pressure since I can't tell if the well tank is empty?

  2. #2
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Default

    You probably have a leak in the pipe up from the pump or from the well to the pressure tank/switch. That assumes the points in switch aren't burnt shut or the switch isn't adjusted wrong.

    I don't know how you are keeping antifreeze in the line to the switch but if there is a check valve used to do that, that will prevent the pressure getting to/from the switch. That may be why the pump runs constantly.

    A broken bladder can not cause a pump to run constantly.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
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  3. #3

    Default constantly running well pump

    Thanks for your reply. I went out there this afternoon and checked the pressure switch. The contacts are not fused together. There is a pressure meter that is on the same block as the pressure switch and that read 0. I decided to try pressurizing the block (which has the pressure hose on it from the well tank) when I applied pressure it immediately went to over 70psi and shut the pressure switch down. It also of course shut the pump down.

    It's almost like the line between the tank and the pressure switch is frozen.

    Any suggestions?

  4. #4
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    What is this block you mention?

    How did you pressurize this block?

    If the switch contacts are open, and the pressure gauge reads 0, then the pump isn't running.

    Yes freezing is a problem if water lines etc. aren't protected from freezing. Freezing breaks pipes etc..
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  5. #5
    Porky Cutter,MGWC Porky's Avatar
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    Default You must have a leak!

    Pumps should not run all the time! Find the leak then I recommend that you replace the existing tank and pressure switch with a Pside-Kick http://www.cyclestopvalves.com/products.html#domestic . The Pside-Kick will give you constant pressure, is small, can be located in a closet or crawl space in the house where it can all be serviced easily.

  6. #6

    Default constantly running well pump

    There is a metal block that the pressure switch, the pressure meter, and a schreader valve for pressurizing the tank are attached. This block also has the line from the well tank going to it. The block says Hydro Air on the side.

    I assume that the line going to the tank is for air so I don't know why it would be froze up.

    The pressure meter reads 0, the pressure switch contacts are closed, and the pump runs constantly, which I would expect.

    I assume that I am going to have to dig up the tank and replace the line going from the tank to the switch. It probably makes sense to build a pump house that I can insulate and heat and abandon burying the tank to prevent this from happening again.

  7. #7
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Sorry I misread the fused contacts part as they were open but, a regular pressure switch won't work on air, so the block should have water in it.

    If the pump is running and you have 0 lbs of pressure, do you have water in the house?
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  8. #8

    Default constantly running well pump

    yes we have water in the house.

    I guess I don't understand how this works.

    I thought that when you were pressurizing the "tank" that air surrounded the bladder in the tank, so there would be air in the line going down to the tank.

    Are you saying that the line to the tank is filled with a fluid?

  9. #9
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    I can't see what you are describing but, if the line you put air in goes to the tank, then that's connected to the schrader air valve stem on the top or side of the tank and that's ok. The air in the tank can only be checked when there is no water on the tank. The air is over or around and over teh 'bladder' in the tank. Water is in/under the bladder. The switch and gauge is on the water line attached to the tank.

    The air in the tank has to be 1-2 psi less than the turn on the pump switch setting, with no water in the tank.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

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