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Thread: DIY Pump Install Questions.

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member Lobanz's Avatar
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    Default DIY Pump Install Questions.

    Hello everyone. This is my first post. Been reading in your forum off and on for several months. Seems like a lot of smart folks here. When it comes to this stuff, I'm not one of them!

    I've got a well drilled and I'm designing how the pump and stuff goes in (see pic). My pump will be a bout 10' off the bottom of the well and I want it to be shrouded for cooling (exactly how to make the shroud is another question). My question is about torque arrestors. Not really sure how they work. If the torque arrestor is pressed up against the side of the casing, how does water get down below it to the pump? If it's not pressed up against the well casing, how does it stop the pump from "torquing"? I don't want my pump to overheat or not get enough water.

    I'm also wondering.... If I use a 1/8" stainless steel safety cable, can I lift and lower the pump/drop pipe using the safety cable? Spool it up on a trailer winch? Or maybe some sort of frame with a pulley so that I can pull the cable with my tractor in very low granny gear? Am I asking for trouble here?

    Any comments on my drawing are welcome!

    Thanks!

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  2. #2
    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    You are using a Cycle Stop Valve, so you don't need torque arrestors or cable guards. Those things only help when you have a pump that is cycling excessively, which won't be the case when using the CSV. Torque arrestors and cable guards are just something to get stuck in the well, and will make it harder to pull.

    Yes you can use the SS cable to pull the pump, but that cable is again just something else down the well that can cause problems. If you drop or break that cable, it will wedge your pump in the hole and you will need to drill a new well. Better off just using 160# poly pipe and pulling the pump with the pipe. With a static of 36', the pump will nearly float out anyway. You will probably almost have to push it down to get it in the well.

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member Lobanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by valveman View Post
    You are using a Cycle Stop Valve, so you don't need torque arrestors or cable guards. Those things only help when you have a pump that is cycling excessively, which won't be the case when using the CSV. Torque arrestors and cable guards are just something to get stuck in the well, and will make it harder to pull.
    That's good news. But, can you explain? The pump turns on full speed ahead every time. It's not moving as much water, but why is the torque of getting the impellers spinning any less?


    Quote Originally Posted by valveman View Post
    Yes you can use the SS cable to pull the pump, but that cable is again just something else down the well that can cause problems. If you drop or break that cable, it will wedge your pump in the hole and you will need to drill a new well. Better off just using 160# poly pipe and pulling the pump with the pipe. With a static of 36', the pump will nearly float out anyway. You will probably almost have to push it down to get it in the well.
    Didn't think of it getting wedged between the pump and casing. Is this why you mostly see poly safety rope -- less of a wedging problem? Everywhere I read says never to use plastic pipe without a safety rope or cable. And I also read lots of warnings to make sure you use cable guards and a torque arrestor with poly drop pipe so the pipe doesn't chafe against casing, or chafe the power cable against the well pipe.

    Not trying to challenge you. I definitely respect your experience and have read most of what you wrote on your CSV site (ran all the CSV claims past a Phd physicist friend and an electrical engineer friend -- as you said, the engineer was harder to convince, but he eventually came around ). Just trying to learn and get a stronger "warm fuzzy" for not using torque arrestor and cable guards, or even a safety cable/rope. Poly drop pipe does sound much easier.

    EDIT: Oh. Didn't mention this is a 6" casing. 4" pump.
    Last edited by Lobanz; 12-13-2011 at 10:46 AM.

  4. #4
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    A pump shroud is only needed if the pump is top fed or the casing so large that little or no water flows past the motor. Is this in a rock bore or casing?

    The torque arrestor does not block off water flow as it is segmented.


    Rigid pipe has less of a propensity to chafe against the casing but precautions should be taken with the wire how it protrudes from the bulge of the couplers. Run a length of 1/4" poly pipe down to the pump to use for water level checking.

  5. #5
    DIY Junior Member Lobanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LLigetfa View Post
    A pump shroud is only needed if the pump is top fed or the casing so large that little or no water flows past the motor. Is this in a rock bore or casing?
    Casing goes down to 80'. 6" Limestone hole from there. Casing is not perforated. Various places above the pump where water comes in through the limestone, but don't know exactly where.


    Quote Originally Posted by LLigetfa View Post
    The torque arrestor does not block off water flow as it is segmented.
    Very good. That clears things up. How tight is it against the casing? Hmmm.... Is the limestone bore bigger than the casing ID? I would expect that it is -- 1/2" or so. Wondering of the torque arrestor would do me any good at all. May just serve to keep the pump mostly centered. I still don't understand how the torque arrestor keeps the pump from turning if it is not tight against the bore/casing.


    Quote Originally Posted by LLigetfa View Post
    Run a length of 1/4" poly pipe down to the pump to use for water level checking.
    Can you explain? Being able to check water levels easily sounds like a good idea. Just can't visualize your suggestion.


    Thanks!

  6. #6
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Rigid PVC doesn't flail around as much as poly so there is less need for a torque arrester. There is always a risk that it will jam at the transition from rock bore to casing.

    A pump in the rock bore could very well be top fed so a sleeve (shroud) assures adequate cooling of the motor.

    The 1/4" poly pipe serves to measure the water depth via pressure. A tire valve is put on the top end while the bottom end stays open. Pump some air into the pipe and then read the pressure. The pressure (.433 per foot) will tell you how many feet of water there is above the bottom of the pipe if you do the math.

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    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    A pump will have a softer start and actually have a little less torque when started against pressure, as with against a CSV. However, it is not so much the amount of torque as the number of torque events. When a pump is cycling on and off and slapping the wire against the casing 300 times per day, it will wear off the insulation much faster than if it only cycles 50 times per day, as with a CSV.

    No matter how many times per day the torque event is happening, the more things in the well, the more places the wire touches something. It touches the torque arrestors, cable guards, hose clamps, drop pipe, casing, safety cable, and rocks in the uncased portion of your well. It is best to just smoothly tape the wire to the drop pipe every 10 to 20 feet and not have anything else in the well.

    Poly rope maybe even worse to fish out than SS cable, if it drops or breaks. Again, the pipe is so buoyant it won’t weigh enough to need a rope or cable. Excessive cycling will unscrew a pump from the pipe. This is why so many people think it important to use a rope or cable. But it is repetitive and constant cycling that unscrews a pump, which is another problem you won’t have with a CSV.

    Even if a pump comes unscrewed, I would rater try to pull it out with the wire, or just break the wire and drop the pump to the bottom of the well, than take a chance with rope or cable in the well. A piece of a torque arrestor, cable guard, or hose clamp breaking off would be just as much a problem as dropping the rope.

    Poly is a little easier, but you can screw 140’ of 1 ¼ sch 80 pvc together with galv, brass, or SS couplings, and bend it enough to easily install or remove it by hand. PVC or poly, it is not the weight of the pipe, but being slick from water that makes it hard to handle. A couple of towels can be very helpful when pulling it out.

    That well is probably 8” below the casing. Yes a tight fitting arrestor would seem necessary to reduce the torque, but can also catch on something easier, like the bottom of your casing. They don’t have to be that tight because they have a little paddle action in the water, which probably works almost as good. They just aren’t needed unless you have a cycling problem. Then it is cycling that is the problem, not a lack of torque arrestors.

  8. #8
    DIY Junior Member Lobanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by valveman View Post
    Again, the pipe is so buoyant it won’t weigh enough to need a rope or cable.
    Quote Originally Posted by valveman View Post
    Poly is a little easier, but you can screw 140’ of 1 ¼ sch 80 pvc together with galv, brass, or SS couplings, and bend it enough to easily install or remove it by hand. PVC or poly, it is not the weight of the pipe, but being slick from water that makes it hard to handle. A couple of towels can be very helpful when pulling it out.
    So I don't need any really tall structure with pulley's, block and tackle, or chain hoist or whatever to pull some big heavy thing out or lower it in? I can just pull it out and lower it down by hand? Wow. THAT's a revelation. This is sounding easier than I thought.

  9. #9
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lobanz View Post
    This is sounding easier than I thought.
    Don't stop eating your Weaties! 130 feet of pipe with a big pump on the end of it is still grunt work. If you intend to pull in one piece and not unthread each coupling, you will still need some sort of tall structure to support and ease the bend.

    http://www.darfieldearthship.com/201...ible-pump.html
    Last edited by LLigetfa; 12-13-2011 at 04:51 PM. Reason: added URL

  10. #10
    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    The total pipe, wire, and pump might weigh 200 pounds. With a high static in the well making it more buoyant, it will fell like about 100 pounds. I have a 200’ deep setting on 1” poly pipe, with a 3’ static water level. I can lift the pump up some with one hand. Two people can pull it out with no problem.

    Even Sch 80 PVC will bend more than you think. Just can’t be a really cold day and try not to bend it at the couplings, as it is weakest at the threads above and below each coupling. Two guys lifting it out while another person pulls the top joint across the yard is all you need.

    Either type pipe will go in easy enough. Being wet and slick makes it a little harder to pull out. But I have never needed a tower or block and tackle to do this. It would be much harder with cable guards and torque arrestors dragging through the water, and even worse if they hang up on anything.

  11. #11
    DIY Junior Member Lobanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LLigetfa View Post
    The 1/4" poly pipe serves to measure the water depth via pressure. A tire valve is put on the top end while the bottom end stays open. Pump some air into the pipe and then read the pressure. The pressure (.433 per foot) will tell you how many feet of water there is above the bottom of the pipe if you do the math.
    So you pump air in it until you hear it bubble (no water in the pipe only air), and then you measure the pressure. Is that right? That's quite cool.

  12. #12
    DIY Junior Member Lobanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LLigetfa View Post
    Don't stop eating your Weaties! 130 feet of pipe with a big pump on the end of it is still grunt work. If you intend to pull in one piece and not unthread each coupling, you will still need some sort of tall structure to support and ease the bend.

    http://www.darfieldearthship.com/201...ible-pump.html

    Yes. Read that article already. THIS one is really good too.

    This sounds totally doable. I think I am leaning toward Schedule 80 PVC because you can thread off each section when you pull it out, making it easier.

    Here's the pro's and con's of PVC and poly as I understand them now. I would love to hear from folks who have opinions one way or the other on PVC vs Poly.


    PVC Pro's:
    • You can take it apart making it easier to pull out
    • You don't have to worry about kinking it when putting it in or pulling it out
    • It's more rigid so it will stay in the center of the bore better and not flop around
    • Threaded joints seem stronger than clamped joints, but I don't know if this is actually true


    PVC Con's:
    • Since it's threaded, the threads might work loose more when motor torques
    • More pieces involved means more points of failure



    Poly Pro's:
    • One long piece with no joints (except if you have an extremely deep well) means less points of failure.
    • No threads to come undone under motor torque load.
    • Has a tighter bend radius than PVC so it may be easier to pull out than PVC if you don't take the PVC apart.
    • Is more freeze proof than PVC, but this really isn't an issue for drop pipe.


    Poly Con's:
    • May flop around in the bore more than PVC when the motor torques it.
    • Have to worry about kinking it when setting the pump and pulling it out.
    • Clamped joints don't seem as strong as threaded joints, but I don't know if this is really the case.

  13. #13
    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    At only 140’, it is not going to make much difference.

    If you take PVC apart, you will need a tower that will lift over 20’. With seven joints of pipe, you will have seven more chances of dropping the pump. PVC is more rigid, and will “flop around” less, but more rigid makes it more likely for the pump to come unscrewed from excessive cycling.

    With long insert fittings and two hose clamps on poly pipe, the pipe will stretch until it breaks before you pull the insert fitting out.

    The rule of thumb is,
    Shallow well and DIY, use poly pipe.
    Deeper well and/or using a hoist, use PVC.

  14. #14
    General Engineering Contractor ballvalve's Avatar
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    Your 12 year old kid can pull and set that rig on poly pipe by hand. I have done 330'.

    You must not have a ballvalve at the well head unless you have a pressure relief valve in front of it, for when some kid shuts it off and smokes the pump.

    I feel torque arrestors dont arrest anything but are glorified standoffs. Rope and wire has saved me a few times, and standoffs, I think are essential because holes are not straight, no matter the problematics with getting buggered up. for my well, I ran the wires in 1/2" poly, and havent seen the pump in 25 years.

    160 poly does not kink, unless you are a gorilla. Can even drive over it - not with a loaded dump truck.

    I would reconsider your drawing to use some 3-way ballvalves Might cost less and not need a printed instruction book to operate when you are away. You have some issues as shown with backpressure, I believe.

  15. #15
    DIY Junior Member Lobanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ballvalve View Post
    I would reconsider your drawing to use some 3-way ballvalves Might cost less and not need a printed instruction book to operate when you are away. You have some issues as shown with backpressure, I believe.
    Great info. Thanks. Didn't know there were 3-way ball valves. That would make it much easier. Will look into it.

    Pressure relieve ahead of the ball valve is a GREAT idea. What PSI should it be? 100?

    What issues with back pressure?

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