It would not hurt to have a new cap on hand. Capacitors do not last forever.
If it is a metal case then it may be oil filled for one that old, and they last a long time, as long as they don't rust thru.
If a cap leaks or is bulged, then it is time to replace it. When they dry out inside they will normally open.
Theory only works perfect in a vacuum.
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I remember a client who had three or four huge conventional galvanized tanks in a separate room, presumably so a sprinkler system wouldn't short-cycle the pump. They were so big that they would never fit through a door, so they must have been put in place as the house was built.
I have seen several applications where the building was constructed over a huge pressure tank or two. We just disconnected the big tank, installed a CSV (Cycle Stop Valve) and a little bladder pressure tank at the end of the huge tank(s). Now there is plenty of space to put in a bedroom or at least a tool shed. But somebody is going to need to torch that old tank into small enough pieces to get it out the door first.
We even have small cities where the water tower has been replaced with a CSV and a little 80 gallon size tank. But removing the old water tower, especially because it is covered in old leaded paint, would cost so much they just leave the water tower standing as a place for some kid to spray paint a defense to his sister’s honor.
Here is a graphic to show the CSV system compared to the old pressure tank system. Notice that the pump with the CSV runs continuously no matter what or how much water is turned on while the old style system cycles on and off repeatedly. Cycling on/off is the biggest killer of pumps/motors.
So which becomes a more expensive investment over say the (modern version) 15 year life of the pump ?
It would appear the pressure tank in the CSV setup is only an air bladder that amplifies water pressure. Why not do away with a tank altogether and then install an overrated submersible pump that runs the moment a set residual line pressure drops? There's plenty of water-hammer arrestors out there.
Last edited by michla; 10-16-2013 at 07:40 AM.
As for energy consumed, it varies by pump maker as to how the impellers are fixed or floating, but a pump moving less water uses less electricity up to a point. As I said, standard practice is to match your sprinkler system to the pump wherever possible.