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Thread: Broken pipe in drilled well

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member Truckie13B's Avatar
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    Default Broken pipe in drilled well

    I tried to pull my submersible pump from my 400' deep well. The 1 1/2" PVC pipe came loose (didn't break) at a coupling at 30' deep. Naturally, the wires broke also. I can reach the wires with pliers ( 3 feet into the 6" PVC casing) but, the pump is stuck in silt. Is there any way I can DIY to "grab" the pipe to continue? I did pull the pump through the silt about 8 - 10 feet before it turned loose. The reason for pulling the pump was to apply a "patch seal" to stop the silt since the casing did not reach the bedrock. The pump and water are, or was, OK. Well man says I must drill a new well.
    Last edited by Truckie13B; 07-01-2012 at 07:08 AM. Reason: more info

  2. #2
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    I don't think this is a DIY proposition as you may only get one chance at it. What is needed is to flare out the end of a pulling grip with a short 4" pipe to get it to go over the end of the 1 1/2" pipe. Use two ropes, one on the grip and the other on the 4" pipe which is the one to lower the grip with.

    Use a smaller grip for the electric wire to keep it out of the way.

    http://www.lewismanufacturingco.com/...ModelsOH-R.htm

  3. #3

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    Save yourself the headache and risk of losing everything and call in a professional. 400' well is no joke and is a lot to do by yourself without the proper equipment. If I understand what you said correctly, then you will need somebody with a derrick truck to fish out the well line.

    Best of luck to you sir!

    - Joe
    Pump Doctor LLC

    __________________________________
    NJ Well Pump Service & Repair

  4. #4
    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PumpDr View Post
    Save yourself the headache and risk of losing everything and call in a professional. 400' well is no joke and is a lot to do by yourself without the proper equipment. If I understand what you said correctly, then you will need somebody with a derrick truck to fish out the well line.

    Best of luck to you sir!

    - Joe
    Pump Doctor LLC

    __________________________________
    NJ Well Pump Service & Repair
    Yeah I agree with the Doctor. You can slip a rope noose over the pipe and pull up on it and the wire at the same time. But you really need the strength and control of a good hydraulic pump derrick to ease it out if possible. A pump fishing job may not be cheap, but if they get it out it may save the well. However, if this is a bad well and the silt is a problem, you maybe better off to cut your losses, move over and drill a new well. I would also give the pump man a figure of how much to spend on fishing, before you give up and move over.

  5. #5
    DIY Junior Member Truckie13B's Avatar
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    Thanks guys. I am a DIY'er and hate to lose to something like this! I, too, know when I'm beat. The reason I need to try is that the professional I hired pulled the pump about 12' before he lost patience and pulled too hard with the hydraulics. I still believe I can get it out. Yes, this is a bad well. The pump is hardly used and worth several $ so I would like to have it out. He will be out on the 6th to drill a new well and if I can save the pump, I will cut my losses a small bit. I will let you know WHEN I have it out. Thanks again for being here for me.

  6. #6

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    I don't understand.. why drill a new well? That will cost thousands. Esp at 400'. Its usually $2 or so a ft + labor.

    And I don't know what you mean about the last pump guy losing his paitence after 12' and using the hydraulics. I would never attempt to pull a 400' by hand, even with a high water table.

    Get some quotes about fishing it out. Its not guaranteed. If the pro's seem to not be getting anywhere, see if you can slide a pump down next to your existing well lines stuck in there.

    After drilling a new well, new pitless, new lines to the house, new lines down however deep, new wire to the house and down the well lines, new pump, etc, etc, etc. Your talking about a $4 - $5k

    - Joe
    Pump Doctor LLC

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by PumpDr View Post
    I don't understand.. why drill a new well? That will cost thousands. Esp at 400'. Its usually $2 or so a ft + labor.

    And I don't know what you mean about the last pump guy losing his paitence after 12' and using the hydraulics. I would never attempt to pull a 400' by hand, even with a high water table.

    Get some quotes about fishing it out. Its not guaranteed. If the pro's seem to not be getting anywhere, see if you can slide a pump down next to your existing well lines stuck in there.

    After drilling a new well, new pitless, new lines to the house, new lines down however deep, new wire to the house and down the well lines, new pump, etc, etc, etc. Your talking about a $4 - $5k

    - Joe
    Pump Doctor LLC
    $2.00 a foot to drill ?????? Can't believe that !

  8. #8
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boston1 View Post
    $2.00 a foot to drill ?????? Can't believe that !
    Prices will vary. It's $48 per foot here.

  9. #9

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    I'm sorry, I meant $20.00 a ft. My company doesn't have a drilling rig, but a buddy of mine has an older one.. the guy must me 70yrs old, still drilling well's. But yeah, he charges around $20 a ft.


    - Joe
    Pump Doctor LLC

    ________________________________
    NJ Well Pump Service & Repair
    Joe -- Pump Doctor LLC
    NJ Well Pump Service & Repair

  10. #10
    DIY Junior Member Truckie13B's Avatar
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    The pump is completely encased in silt, above and below. He pulled on the thing using hydraulics and was able to move it up about 12' in an hour and a half. Thats when he lost his patience and pulled too hard. The pipe broke at a coupling twice, The last break was approximately 30 - 40' doown. Nothing left to pull on but the wires. The guy I use is really good, He charges $12 per foot and that includes labor. Pump, wires, materials are extra. I'm going thru this because the guy who originally drilled the well did not set the casing down to bedrock thus allowing the silt to enter the shaft. This is a 5 year old well located in northwest Georgia. Thanks for the replies, keep them coming. I'm getting there using all the advice. PS He didn't charge me a dime to try and pull the pump......Really good guy!

  11. #11

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    Yeah you met a good guy it seems. I'm gonna assume that the pump was hung on galvanized steel pipe and they really are a disaster waiting to happen. I don't want to say its common to lose a pump, but it happens. In fact, we lost a 600'+ well pump hung on 1 1/4" gal last week. There isn't much you can do. Sometimes you need the gal because of the weight, but eventually the water will eat the threads away at the couplings and you'll lose it. Especially if its brass on gal. Good luck with everything, you'll probably have to pay a pretty penny for this one but seems like you have your heart set out on it. Hopefully you'll have the pressure your looking for when its all said and done!
    Joe -- Pump Doctor LLC
    NJ Well Pump Service & Repair

  12. #12
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Truckie13B View Post
    The 1 1/2" PVC pipe came loose (didn't break) at a coupling at 30' deep...
    Quote Originally Posted by PumpDr View Post
    I'm gonna assume that the pump was hung on galvanized steel pipe and they really are a disaster waiting to happen. I don't want to say its common to lose a pump, but it happens. In fact, we lost a 600'+ well pump hung on 1 1/4" gal last week. There isn't much you can do. Sometimes you need the gal because of the weight, but eventually the water will eat the threads away at the couplings and you'll lose it.
    PVC is lighter but steel is stronger. As for rusting at the threads, a couple dollars spent on electrical tape to cover the threads would go a long way to prevent that.

  13. #13

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    I thought he said it was connected to/with PVC?

  14. #14
    DIY Junior Member Truckie13B's Avatar
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    Got the wires out including the splice at the pump. At least I saved that much. I made a tool to "grip" the PVC pipe and attached it to a 3/8" cable and will try it out today. I have a skinny nephew to lower into the well by his ankles, just kidding. The New well is going in on Monday. Hope it doesn't have tp go 400' for lots of water. Thanks for all the "well" wishes....LOL.

  15. #15
    In the Trades Texas Wellman's Avatar
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    If it was hung on galv. pipe then he would have been able to get it out. Any well man worth his salt knows not to mix brass and galv. That's always a big no-no unless you know before hand that the water quality is very good.

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