You can hear your submersible pump grinding? How deep (shallow) is it?
I am curious also how you know that the pump is using more electricity to start up than it did before. Pumps always require a jolt of electricity to get them going and then taper off--the turn on is what wears a pump, not the running.
A leak in the line or the failure of the check valve would not cause a noise. If you have a faulty check valve, the water in the line will run back into the well and you will have air in your line.
I'd be maybe more inclined to believe that it may be a bad bearing in the pump. The submersible pump business is different from the plumbing business--so, I don't know a whole bunch about submersibles. You may need to call a pump person.