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Thread: Irrigation pump loses prime overnight

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member sschnei's Avatar
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    Default Irrigation pump loses prime overnight

    Hi, new to forum and have a pump priming issue.
    I have a 1 HP Sears pump to pull water from lake for lawn and landscape irrigation. This summer, the pump began losing prime overnight. When I refill the housing, the pump runs fine.
    There are no visible signs of water leaks. So, suspecting a leak somewhere on the intake, I inspected and replaced the all the PVC intake piping, even though I found no evidence of a bad joint. I inspected the swing check located on the inlet and it is clean and clear, but it still loses prime overnight.
    Now Iím thinking the shaft seal may be badÖ but it does not leak water during operation???
    I canít think of anything else to look for. Does anyone have suggestions?
    Many thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Plumbing Contractor for 49 years johnjh2o1's Avatar
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    A bad foot valve.
    John

  3. #3
    DIY Senior Member craigpump's Avatar
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    Hook up an air compressor and charge the pump and suction line with air. Your leak will be where the bubbles are.

  4. #4
    DIY Junior Member sschnei's Avatar
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    Thank you for the responses. Interesting that in the 5+ years it has never had a footvalve on it.

    Based on your input, I have already purchased a footvalve. I'll keep you posted as to how it works out.

    Thanks

  5. #5
    Jack of all trades DonL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sschnei View Post
    Thank you for the responses. Interesting that in the 5+ years it has never had a footvalve on it.

    Based on your input, I have already purchased a footvalve. I'll keep you posted as to how it works out.

    Thanks

    A Foot valve is a good thing.

    It will keep the pump from needing to run dry every time you start it.

    You probably have a small leak on the pump seal. Or the suction connection at the pump.

    The foot valve should help to mask that problem.


    Good Luck.
    Theory only works perfect in a vacuum.

    Cyber Security Protection for Windows C:\ > WWW.WinForce.Net

  6. #6
    DIY Junior Member sschnei's Avatar
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    I recieved my footvalve yesterday, plan to install today. Had an interesting thought overnight.

    After I install the foot valve how do I drain the intake piping before winter to prevent freezing the pipes?

    Many thanks in advance.

  7. #7
    Jack of all trades DonL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sschnei View Post
    I recieved my footvalve yesterday, plan to install today. Had an interesting thought overnight.

    After I install the foot valve how do I drain the intake piping before winter to prevent freezing the pipes?

    Many thanks in advance.

    You should be able to start the pump and pull the inlet out of the water and raise it up high, until water stops coming out of the pump outlet. It is best not to let it run dry for very long.


    Good Luck.
    Theory only works perfect in a vacuum.

    Cyber Security Protection for Windows C:\ > WWW.WinForce.Net

  8. #8
    Sprinkler Guy Wet_Boots's Avatar
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    PVC suction piping can include a union, to allow you to pull out the section of pipe with the foot valve. The O-ring seals in the unions are reliable enough to not be a source of suction leaks.

  9. #9
    Jack of all trades DonL's Avatar
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    Seems like just removing the Valve would be easy enough.

    That can be easier said than done, depending on the pipe type.
    Theory only works perfect in a vacuum.

    Cyber Security Protection for Windows C:\ > WWW.WinForce.Net

  10. #10
    DIY Junior Member sschnei's Avatar
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    Update...Installed foot valve on Saturday, primed pump and let it sit overnight. Sunday morning I started the pump and water came out the sprinklers without delay. I like that! My lawn and garden like that!!! Hopefully winterizing will prove to be no big deal.

    Thanks for all the input from the forum.

  11. #11
    Jack of all trades DonL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sschnei View Post
    Update...Installed foot valve on Saturday, primed pump and let it sit overnight. Sunday morning I started the pump and water came out the sprinklers without delay. I like that! My lawn and garden like that!!! Hopefully winterizing will prove to be no big deal.

    Thanks for all the input from the forum.


    Good Work.


    Enjoy.
    Theory only works perfect in a vacuum.

    Cyber Security Protection for Windows C:\ > WWW.WinForce.Net

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