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Thread: Water level in an air over hydro tank

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member SilverFox52's Avatar
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    Default Water level in an air over hydro tank

    What, approximately, should the level of water be in an 83gal air over hydro tank? My water level at pressure shut off is approximately 16" from the bottom and my tank is 60" tall. Should the water level be somewhere around 1/2 to 2/3 tank volume? I have pinpointed my water level with an infrared thermometer and the temperature change is right at 16".

    I'm going to remove the plug at the top of the tank and raise water level (with the plug out) but I don't know if air should be 50% of tank volume or 33% of tank volume.

    Appreciate any insight.

  2. #2
    DIY Junior Member SilverFox52's Avatar
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    Got it figured out. I drained the tank to empty through an outdoor faucet, removed the plug to release any residual air pressure (just a puff), reinstalled the plug, and turned the pump back on. Water level is now at 49" and I am sure I won't have any more air in my lines after this.

    This post talks about the problem I was having a few years ago - http://www.terrylove.com/forums/show...g-storage-tank

    The air issue would come and go, but lately had gotten to be more consistent. Probably have some defective components/valves in the bleed system (if it exists), but if this works for any length of time, it only takes about 15 minutes to correct.
    Last edited by SilverFox52; 07-27-2012 at 03:19 PM.

  3. #3
    In the Trades Texas Wellman's Avatar
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    Your air release is bad.

  4. #4
    DIY Junior Member SilverFox52's Avatar
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    Where is the air release located - above ground or on the down pipe in the casing?

  5. #5
    In the Trades Texas Wellman's Avatar
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    Should be on the side of the tank roughly in the middle. If you don't have one then that's your problem.

    Also, please note that when a system has a built in bleeder that the bleeder and air release work in tandem. If you don't have a built in bleeder then I would say that you have something else wrong with your well, like a hole in the drop pipe or bad check valve and should get it checked out by a pro.

  6. #6
    DIY Junior Member SilverFox52's Avatar
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    Thanks for the feedback.

    Valveman's sticky topic about pressure tank maintenance was very helpful in understanding how these systems work. Just wanted to confirm air release and AVC were the same thing. My system does not have an AVC, never has.

    As mentioned in my post a couple years back, the system had worked fine for 19 years with no maintenance whatsoever, so I'm willing to take a chance that draining the tank and re-establishing the correct air volume will work for awhile. If not, I'll get a pro out to diagnose it.

  7. #7
    DIY Member bcpumpguy's Avatar
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    If you system has no air volume control, it has no air release. the 16" level was probably just about right as it would have been about 1/3 of the tank. I'm guessing you are talking about a bladderless steel tank, if you no air is coming out of the tank on a pumpcylce while running a hose or a tap your aircharge is just fine. I usually charge these type of tanks to about 5 to 10 psi under the cut in point run some heavy water when the water system has recharged and make sure no air comes out when the pressure switch turns on. remember you can't compress water but you can compess air, its there for a purpose.

  8. #8
    DIY Senior Member craigpump's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Texas Wellman;351241]Should be on the side of the tank roughly in the middle. If you don't have one then that's your problem.

    Except if he has one of those fiberglass tanks with the AVC that drops in from the top.

  9. #9
    DIY Junior Member SilverFox52's Avatar
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    Here is a picture of my tank, as installed in 1970 or 1971:



    We bought our house in 1990, and to my knowledge, the tank and pump are original. I know for a fact nothing has been changed since we took ownership.

    Quote Originally Posted by "bcpumpguy
    If you system has no air volume control, it has no air release. the 16" level was probably just about right as it would have been about 1/3 of the tank. I'm guessing you are talking about a bladderless steel tank, if you no air is coming out of the tank on a pumpcylce while running a hose or a tap your aircharge is just fine. I usually charge these type of tanks to about 5 to 10 psi under the cut in point run some heavy water when the water system has recharged and make sure no air comes out when the pressure switch turns on. remember you can't compress water but you can compess air, its there for a purpose.
    Yes, it's an air over hydro steel tank. My problem was air coming out of all my faucets, taps, showers, toilets, washer, dishwasher exactly as Valveman described in his sticky post on pressure tank maintenance. I could hear air leaving the tank before cut in because the water level was so low the pressure charge in the tank was actually down to outlet level. The inlet is higher than the outlet, and the dark band at the bottom of the tank is where the water level was after draining through the outlet. Since re-establishing the air cushion, my system has been working the way it always did before and I have no air in my lines. Problem solved.

    Maybe my system should have an AVC in it, but one was never installed, and I'm reluctant to add one now. Like I said earlier, if I ever need to address this in the future, it's a 15 minute job now that I know what needs to be done. When my pump finally dies, I'll ditch the steel tank in favor of a bladder design. I have an impulse sprinkler running on my vegetable garden right now. When my pump cycles on it runs for approximately 2 1/2 minutes, with a 10 minute draw down before cycling on again. Better than it has been for a long time. I'm happy.

  10. #10
    Moderator valveman's Avatar
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    You need an Air Volume Control (AVC) screwed into that 1 ” hole where the pressure gauge is now. I don’t know why it hasn’t been doing this before. Maybe you never had a bleeder system and now you have a hole in the pipe?

  11. #11
    In the Trades Texas Wellman's Avatar
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    For clarity purposes, around here AVC = Brady AV-80 or similar to be used with jet pumps, and an air release has a float of some sort to let the excess air out.

    I agree with valveman, you have a problem down hole letting excess air in.

  12. #12
    DIY Junior Member SilverFox52's Avatar
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    I'm going to run it as is for now and see what happens. If the air in my lines returns, I'll call a pro. Thanks for all the feedback and I'll update this thread if anything changes.

  13. #13
    DIY Member bcpumpguy's Avatar
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    must be a check valve right at the top of the well with a hole somewhere below it, everytime the pump shuts off it will let in air and push it into the tank when it starts again.

  14. #14
    DIY Junior Member SilverFox52's Avatar
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    Worked fine for a couple days but the air returned yesterday.

    If I pull the well cap, would I be able to see the bleeder valve/s? If there is a hole in the down pipe, it would have to be above the static water level right? If so, shouldn't I be able to see water escaping during a visual inspection?

    I don't have a problem calling a pro, but I want to know it's beyond my ability to correct before I do, so I want to pull the well cap and inspect first. Other than hosing it off, what else do I need to know about removing for inspection? Any other helpful advice?

    I could add an AVC, but if there is another problem in the downpipe, it would only treat a symptom not the cause and would be constantly releasing excess air pressure. This is the AVC recommended in my 02/2009 post - http://www.drillspot.com/products/33...Volume_Control Is that still a good recommendation assuming I can correct the source of my excess air?

    Here's the cap over my casing...

    Thanks much!

    Phil
    Attached Images Attached Images  

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    General Engineering Contractor ballvalve's Avatar
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    I would say its unlikely you will get that 1.5" bushing out of the tank. But if you did, I would add the avc before disturbing the well. If you have a hole in the down pipe you should have water hammer and a big air inrush that you can hear when the pump starts. Where is your schrader valve? Should be right at the tank on the check valve.that lets the air IN when the pump runs. You could cap that for a few days and see if you still have air - then get into the well.

    If you pull the pump you should go to poly pipe and a diaphragm tank. Amazon has some at amazing prices, us made.

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