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one for the gurus (chlorine injection pump electrical connection)

one for the gurus (chlorine injection pump electrical connection)

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  #1  
Old 02-06-10, 09:32 PM
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Lightbulb one for the gurus (chlorine injection pump electrical connection)

Hi folks:

Spent this afternoon trying to hook up a chlorine injection pump, which is 115 V. My well pump and pressures switch are 240volt.

So, I thought I would take one of the 120 volt input leads and run a separate neutral back to the load center inside the existing conduit. For testing purposes, I just hooked up the neutral to the ground screw on the pressure switch. Yes, I know that's not code, so not something I would leave there permanently, but again it was just to make sure things were working correctly.

I did notice that the input power leads may not be hooked up correctly, but not sure it would make a difference or not. Anyway, I think the input leads are supposed to be on the two outside screws (greatest distance from center of pressure switch) but one is hooked up to the outside screw, while the other one is hooked up to the inside screw, but still on opposite side of the switch if that makes sense. I believe when the pressure switch kicks on the two are joined together, so not sure this would make any difference anyway.

Okay, here's my dilemma. The junction box that powers the chlorine pumps reads 120 volts, when the well pump is running, BUT it DOES NOT power the chlorine pump. Hmmmm.
I tried running a low-voltage lamp, thinking there might not be enough amperage to start the motor, but it won't power that either. Still reads 120 volts though!

I wouldn't think that the neutral hooked up to the ground screw would affect anything, but ran a neutral back to the load center just to double check and got the same results.

So, what am I looking at here? Enough voltage but not enough amperage? The motor I'm using draws less than one amp (.90 Amps, so I can imagine that would be a problem.

This one has got me stumped. I have tried alternating sides on the pressure switch hook-up, and even hooking up the pump to the outside leads (live all the time), but no difference. Again, I am getting 120 V, but apparently not enough amperage to start the motor or at least that's my guess.

The only thing missing from a 240 V line is a neutral to make 120 right? I would think things like dryers would have both present. Granted the well pump does not have a neutral, but if I add one I would think I would be home free.

Damn thing is driving me nuts! I guess I can order a 240 V model, but would like to know why the heck this thing doesn't work.

HELP!!

Troy
 
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Old 02-06-10, 09:39 PM
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Pictures! We want pictures!!
 
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Old 02-07-10, 12:31 AM
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Did you test with digtial voltmeter ?

If so and I know you did use standard 120 volt lamp and it fail to come on.

What gauge size wire it have there now I know typically most well use either 2.5 or 4.0mm˛{ #14 or #12 AWG } but how far is from the load centre it is ??

To order to verify which is the line side just look at the cable when it enter the pressure switch one set is line while the other one is load and you will need a test light to verify it { non concat voltage tester will work if you can understand the function correctly } once you know which one is line supply and load supply sometime the concats are pitted pretty bad you can not get good reading the soluation useally is get new pressure switch.

Really I think you have just more than a basic issue with grounding on this set up let me know what the answer.

Merci,Marc
 
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Old 02-07-10, 03:08 AM
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Originally Posted by french277V View Post
Did you test with digtial voltmeter ?

If so and I know you did use standard 120 volt lamp and it fail to come on.

What gauge size wire it have there now I know typically most well use either 2.5 or 4.0mm˛{ #14 or #12 AWG } but how far is from the load centre it is ??

To order to verify which is the line side just look at the cable when it enter the pressure switch one set is line while the other one is load and you will need a test light to verify it { non concat voltage tester will work if you can understand the function correctly } once you know which one is line supply and load supply sometime the concats are pitted pretty bad you can not get good reading the soluation useally is get new pressure switch.

Really I think you have just more than a basic issue with grounding on this set up let me know what the answer.

Merci,Marc
Yes, I did test with a digital voltmeter. it's pretty easy to see the incoming, supply lines as they are black and red, whereas the pump wires are yellow and white in this case. As I said in my original post, it not exactly hooked up correctly but it still works fine. The house was finished in 2007, so the pressure switch is nearly pristine ( no corrosion).

The wires look like 12 gauge to me, maybe 10 gauge. I have wired my house from the service entrance, down to low voltage thermostats. While I am not a licensed electrician, I do have quite a bit experience with electrical. This one seems like it should work just fine, but as I said it really has me stumped, and it's probably something really simple!

I know sometimes people use some 320 grit sandpaper on the contacts, but honestly they really look clean to me. If there was a ground issue, wouldn't running a direct line back to the load center solve that issue? The distance from the pressure switch to the load center is 6 to 8 feet at most.

One thing worth mentioning is that the wires are not wrapped completely around the screws, but rather laid in straight. I suspect this could cause a little bit of voltage loss, but would it be enough to completely stop an appliance from working?

I can try a tester with a light and experiment further. I certainly have seen instances with DC where you have current going through a wire, but the circuit still fails to work.

The actual well pump is over 115 feet from the house + another 140 feet down the well, so if there was a major problem with the wiring I would think I would see a problem there--don't you think? The pump is super strong (11gpm) and has no issues. I would think running a small motor that's less than an amp would be no issue whatsoever, but obviously that's not the case!

Any additional comments you have would be appreciated. As I said, this one has me stumped. Everything I know about electrical tells me it should be working fine, and it just feels like I'm overlooking something obvious.

Troy
 
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Old 02-07-10, 04:40 AM
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Have you tried to temporarily hook this pump up to verify that it even works? Even if it's new, someone could have let out the magic smoke, took it back to the store and wasn't honest as to why they were returning it.

Is there some kind of control within the pump and it has a delay of some sort and you're expecting it to work immediately?

If your meter has ohms, you can ring the pump motor and see if it may be open or not.

P.S. I would just put a cord on it and plug it in to a receptacle to verify it works in the first place.
 

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Old 02-07-10, 08:50 AM
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Does the load center have a neutral run to it?
 
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Old 02-07-10, 10:01 AM
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Is there an on and off switch on the pump?

I agree with checking the pump first. Verify that the pump is good by hooking it up to a known, good circuit or ohm out the motor.
 
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Old 02-07-10, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by wirenut1110 View Post
Have you tried to temporarily hook this pump up to verify that it even works? Even if it's new, someone could have let out the magic smoke, took it back to the store and wasn't honest as to why they were returning it.

Is there some kind of control within the pump and it has a delay of some sort and you're expecting it to work immediately?

If your meter has ohms, you can ring the pump motor and see if it may be open or not.

P.S. I would just put a cord on it and plug it in to a receptacle to verify it works in the first place.
The pump is brand-new, and yes I have verified it works. Yes, I double checked that the switch was in the on position. The chlorine pump turns on immediately, no delay. It's made by Stenner, a very reliable brand.

Troy
 
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Old 02-07-10, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Bill190 View Post
Does the load center have a neutral run to it?
Of course! As well as a grounding busbar. As I said, the house was built in 2007, so all of this is relatively new. I also tried grounding it directly to the water line with a cooper strap--no difference.

Troy
 
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Old 02-07-10, 04:41 PM
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Just wanted to thank all those who responded. I solved the problem this afternoon. It turned out to be a bad ground. Not sure which connection was bad, but essentially just went back and redid all the connections one by one, and when I finished it worked! Can't say I've ever had this kind of problem before, but there's a 1st time for everything I guess.

Cheers,

Troy
 
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Old 02-07-10, 05:00 PM
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I was just about to post that somewhere your neutral was not bonded to the equipment ground but you beat me to it.

I thought you were going to exchange that pump for a 240 volt model? You might be able to find a surplus control transformer with a minimum of 150 VA rating that has a 240-480 volt primary and a 120 volt secondary for a decent price. That would allow you to properly connect the Stenner to the well pump circuit.

BTW, those Stenner pumps are a good product but you should probably change the internal tube at least every other year.
 
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Old 02-07-10, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by furd View Post
I was just about to post that somewhere your neutral was not bonded to the equipment ground but you beat me to it.

I thought you were going to exchange that pump for a 240 volt model? You might be able to find a surplus control transformer with a minimum of 150 VA rating that has a 240-480 volt primary and a 120 volt secondary for a decent price. That would allow you to properly connect the Stenner to the well pump circuit.

BTW, those Stenner pumps are a good product but you should probably change the internal tube at least every other year.
Thanks for the response. Yes, my original plan was to return the 120 volt model but the vendor wanted 25% restocking fee plus shipping, so decided to try to make it work after all.

It was a fairly easy project to run a separate neutral, just surprised how sensitive it was to getting a good attachment.

It's all good now, and the next step will be calibrating.

Cheers,

Troy
 
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