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Thread: Pump Loses Pressure When Faucet is On!

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    DIY Junior Member StevenW1969's Avatar
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    Apr 2013
    North Muskegon, MI

    Default Pump Loses Pressure When Faucet is On!

    Hi all I'm new too the forums. I just bought an old home. It was originally owned by an old couple who built the house in 1948. As of 5 years ago the husband died, then the wife was taken to a retirement home. The grandson of these folks bought the house and trashed it then lost it because he couldn't make the payments. The house was vacant for 9 months. All the plumbing in the house froze at one point and shattered (white PVC). I found the pump well in the front yard it is in a round brick walled hole that was about 36 inches deep. The well hole has a 3-piece cement cover. It had a sand floor which had roots and junk in the bottom of it, so I dug it out to about 46 inches deep and filled it with about 4 inches of dolomite so it somewhat of a solid bottom to it and still drain if it gets wet. The pump itself is a 115 volt shallow well pump it was in the hole when I opened the well for the 1st time. The power to the well was run underground with the water main to the house with a breaker switch for the on and off. This was a pain in the butt so so I added a 30 amp disconnect in the well hole mounted to the cement wall with a vapor proof whip connected to the pump. That corrected the electrical issue. So then I tried to prime the pump which did not take much effort. The problem I found was that the pump would only hold pressure if the pressure relief faucet was closed (the gate valve to the house was in the closed position). The pump will only pump up to 15 lbs 5 lbs. Then when I open the pressure relief faucet that I had a garden hose hooked too and run out the yard away from the well hole to keep the moisture out of the well hole. When the faucet is closed it holds the higher pressure but as soon as it was opened it went right to zero. The pump has a 7 gallon bladder tank under it so I checked the air pressure and it was set at 13 pounds. I figured the bladder was ruptured so I filled it to 40 lbs and checked for leaks it sounds hollow on one end and water filled on the other so I ruled the tank was just low on air. I read online somewhere that for the size home and number of water faucets the 7 gallon bladder was way too small so I bought 30 gallon tank and re-plumbed all the pipes from the output of pump to the line going into the house. I used 3/4 PEX for the new tank install. I have added photo's of my work. After adding the the larger bladder tank into the system I only get 40 lbs of line pressure and it drops to nothing once I open the valve. Same issue but I did notice that the new bladder tank doesn't have any water in it it is empty even after I run water thru the system. The bladder tank is setting lower than the pump and the house line but is because I had drop it a few inches so it inside the well hole as it is quite tall. I did add a second check valve coming out of the pump, I figured the well head had one but there should be one after the pump also. I did add a new faucet and a new gate valve to the house when I re-plumbed.

    Now that you know all that I know and you are totally confused by my poor explanation. I'm hoping that you can help me and figure out why the well won't build pressure. Below are also a couple videos I posted on YouTube that might give a better description of my setup.

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