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Thread: Low pressure, pump stays on - tank, pressure switch? Replace all?

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  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member applebach's Avatar
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    Default Low pressure, pump stays on - tank, pressure switch? Replace all?

    Hi. I am a new homeowner and thus new to this forum as well. We have been here all of six months and of course the well system has now developed problems.

    Pressure switch meter reads zero, it is not cycling, the pump just keeps running. I would guess there is probably 10 psi at the faucets. Showers are weak at best.

    I had someone just here to look at it, no testing done they just want to replace everything = new pump, bladder tank, pressure switch and also offered to cut out the iron pipe and replace with brass. $1500, seems like a reasonable estimate if not a good price altogether? Two-wire pump with capacitor, bigger tank. Currently an Amtrol 20gal, pump has like SIX wires going to it??? I think it is about a twenty-year old install.

    But I can't help thinking I could get a couple more years out of this system for cheap if it's just the pressure switch. How does one know? If the pump is running OK wouldn't there be better pressure available, or the tank is what generates the pressure?

    Thanks for any help, guys (and gals)!!!

  2. #2
    Test, Don't Guess! cacher_chick's Avatar
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    If the pump is running and you get very limited water, the pipe going to the pump might have a hole in it.

    Without properly diagnosing the problem, throwing a bunch of new parts at it is not a very good solution.

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member applebach's Avatar
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    I mean, a healthy pump should put out more pressure than that, am I right? It might be 20psi, I am only guessing.

    The whole system could easily be 25 or even 30 years old. That is why replacing everything may not be a terrible idea. If it's the pump, you can bet I will go for the whole enchilada anyway, the pressure guage and tank are all corroded and stuff.

  4. #4
    Test, Don't Guess! cacher_chick's Avatar
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    You might be right, but there is also the possibility that you could spend all that money when the problem might be that the well is failing.

    If someone suggests they can replace "everything" for 1500, my guess is that they are trying to get their foot in the door so that they can sell you more as additional "problems" are found.

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    In the trades WellWaterProducts's Avatar
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    It's a fair price but may not solve the problem. This does not sound like a little adjustment. The right pump professional should explain what issues may be encountered up front.
    ----
    Chris Kofer
    h2oguy.com




  6. #6
    DIY Junior Member applebach's Avatar
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    Wow,

    I was really hoping for some more pointed advice. Now that it's the weekend, I trying to do some diagnostics myself. Here is what I found;

    Pressure switch is probably OK, there is 237V on both load and line. I bought a new one but haven't tried installing it yet. It looks like it's the newest piece of the puzzle, last item to be replaced. I began thinking that maybe one leg was bad, giving the pump only 120V and not enough pressure.

    With the low pressure, of course the pressure switch is keyed ON.

    Tested air pressure at the tank: 12psi! So, that's not right. Should be 38psi. It went up to 14.5 psi with the pump running. Should I try to pump it up? I have a pretty good floor bike pump I could use.

    But my most basic question remains - should the pump not produce way more pressure and flow than this? Or could a bad bladder tank cause these symptoms? I know another possibility is a rupture in between pump and tank plumbing. This happened suddenly, like one day we had 40-60 psi and the next day like 10 maybe 20psi. We don't have sediment in the water or sand or hard water, don't think anything is clogged, so is the pump going bad?

    Thanks for any help!

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